God involves humanity in the redemptive plan of His creation.
- What are your most and least favorite things about the Christmas season?
Most of us look forward to the Christmas season. We look forward to seeing family and friends, but the Christmas season can also be lonely. We can be in a crowd but still be alone. The good news of the gospel is that God has a place for everyone in His redemptive plan; He uses ordinary people in that plan. Mary’s story reminds us that God invites people to be a part of bringing about redemption.
- How can the Christmas season heighten anxiety and produce fear?
- How can a person feel lonely even in the middle of a large crowd?
Read Luke 1:26-29, while listening for the angel’s message and Mary’s response.
- How do we begin to see God’s plan for Mary through the angel’s greeting?
- How did Mary react to the angel’s greeting?
Her greatest qualification was not her own righteousness but the fact that “the Lord” was with her.
- What is it important to remember that a person’s involvement in God’s plans is based on grace rather than merit?
It is no wonder Mary was “troubled” as she struggled to understand the
magnitude of Gabriel’s greeting.
Read Luke 1:30-33, while listening for all the details concerning the promised Messiah packed into Gabriel’s words.
- How does the name given by Gabriel point to the purpose and role of Jesus?
- How do the phrases “Son of the Most High” and He “will reign over the house of Jacob forever” influence the view of who Jesus is?
The angel had shared some profound, yet stunning, news with Mary.
Read Luke 1:34-37, listenings for the angel’s incredible response to Mary’s “how” question.
Compare the news that angle brought to Zechariah in last week’s lesson to the news brought to Mary. Both Zechariah and Mary were surprised by the news they heard.
- What was similar about Gabriel’s news to the two of them? What was different?
- What do you think Mary found most difficult to comprehend?
The angel said nothing is impossible with God—why would it be so important for Mary to believe that as the mother of Jesus? Why is it so important for us to believe that today?
- How was Jesus a demonstration of God’s power to redeem?
- How does the announcement by Gabriel support that teaching that Jesus was fully God and fully human?
Read Luke 1:38, looking for evidence of Mary’s obedience to God. Notes that Mary was afraid, yet she believed the angel’s message.
- When have you experienced fear and faith at the same time?
God places people in positions to be used by Him. Jesus is the promised Messiah who will reign eternal. God’s power is seen in His redemptive plan. Believers are to humbly submit to God’s purposes.
- How is God using your past and position to open doors for you to be involved in His redemptive plan?
- What are some of the costs a person may face as a result of following God’s direction?
- How do those costs compare to the blessings of following God’s direction in our lives?