I love the popular Christmas song, Mary, Did You Know by Mark Lowry and Buddy Greene, sung first by Hayley Westenra and since by others. The song speaks to my "mother-heart," that place in me that cherishes my children beyond human comprehension. That whole process of carrying them in my own body for nine months (ok 10 with one of my sons!), feeling them kick, watching them grow as my belly stretched out, the birth process (intense) and then nursing, gives moms something we ourselves cannot even comprehend. Many times, we are told that Mary "pondered things in her heart." I can relate.
Did Mary know? As she saw her pregnancy progress, did she comprehend the magnitude of the life growing inside her? Did she realize the full and eternal implications of that life? Did she know? The song asks.
The Scriptures tell us: Mary did know. Luke 1:46-56 tell us what Mary knew.
Mary knew the Lord. Verse 46 tell us she said, "My soul doth magnify the Lord." She knew His Lordship. She knew Who He was and she magnified Him with her soul. Her soul was lifted up to Him. She knew exactly Who she was magnifying. She magnified Him because He lifted her up to Himself.
Verse 47 tells us she knew she needed a Savior. She said, "My spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior." This is a clear acknowledgement of her own recognition for the need of salvation. She knew the coming Messiah was coming to deliver even her. She knew He was a personal Savior and she shows us that by using the pronoun "my."
She recognized her own low estate. She recognized that she was just an average Jewish girl to whom the world paid no attention, but she also recognized her position in Christ as she knew she could now count herself among the known. She went from an unknown girl to highly blessed woman and she knew it was He Who made her that way. She claimed that all, not just some, but all generations would call her blessed. Indeed. This shows us that Mary knew her theology. She may have been a humble Jewish girl, but that didn't stop her from knowing God's Word and proclaiming it.
In verse 49, she recognized His great Name and His holiness, while at the same announcing His personal relationship with her. "He has done great things to me." The use of that personal pronoun is not a small thing. It's personal; Mary knew it.
In verse 50, Mary talked about His mercy that was shown from generation to generation. She saw how He fulfilled His mercy toward man and brought them a Savior, as yet not born when she proclaimed this. She knew her conception was the fulfillment of the mercy that generations had looked forward to.
She shows her political prowess in verses 51 - 53 by realizing that the proud have been scattered and the mighty have been put down from their seats. This is a massive recognition. She did not say "they will be," she claimed "they have been!" This is huge. She knew He had already come...and was already growing within her and she knew the fulfillment of mercy this represented. Mary was very theologically strong. Realizing what she knew is literally breathtaking!
In verses 54 - 56, she acknowledges His mercy toward Israel and the fulfillment of that mercy. She spoke of the fathers of the faith and specifically of Abraham.
Indeed, Mary knew Messiah had come. Indeed, Mary knew the full implications of the Child she carried.
As you look at Mary in Scripture, you don't see a shy, withdrawn Jewish girl/woman with little to say. You see a bold woman who is not afraid to speak out, to stand up to naysayers and proclaim her own need for the Savior she carried in her womb.
Indeed. Mary knew. Sing the song with great understanding and turn that question on yourself.
Do you know Who He really is?