Mary's Hymn

Mary’s Hymn

Mary’s Hymn

Mary’s Hymn

Fourth Sunday in Advent

Luke 1:39-56

Divine Service

Lutheran Service Book (LSB) hymnal

You may purchase a copy here.

Opening Hymn    

768 To God The Holy Spirit Let Us Pray

The Service of the Word p. 184


The Confession of Sins

The Absolution

The Psalm 111                 

The Gloria Patri

The Kyrie p. 186

The Salutation and Collect p. 189

      Deuteronomy 18:15–19                   I Will Raise Up A Prophet

15“The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen— 16just as you desired of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God or see this great fire any more, lest I die.’ 17And the Lord said to me, ‘They are right in what they have spoken. 18I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers. And I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. 19And whoever will not listen to my words that he shall speak in my name, I myself will require it of him.’”


Philippians 4:4–7       Relief for Your Hearts and Minds

4Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Luke 1:39-56                          Mary's Song – The Magnificat

39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, 40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”

46 And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, 47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.  For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; 49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.  50 And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. 51 He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts; 52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate; 53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty. 54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, 55 as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”  56 And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home.

Glory be to Thee, O Lord!

Praise be to Thee, O Christ!

The Nicene Creed p. 191

Hymn of the Day

    357 O Come, O Come, Emmanuel     

The Sermon (see below)

The Offertory p. 192

Prayer of the Church

The Service of the Sacrament


Sanctus p. 195

The Lord’s Prayer p. 196

The Words of Our Lord p. 197

The Pax Domini

The Agnus Dei p. 198


Distribution Hymn 572 In The Shattered Bliss Of Eden

Distribution Hymn 332 Savior Of The Nations Come

Distribution Hymn 345 Hark! A Thrilling Voice is Sounding

Distribution Hymn 350 Come, thou precious ransom come

The Nunc Dimittis p. 199

The Thanksgiving p. 200

The Salutation

The Benedicamus p. 201

The Benediction p 202

Closing Hymn

384 Of The Father’s Love Begotten

Grace and mercy to God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  Amen.

It is written: My soul magnifies the Lord,  and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.  For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed.  Thus far the text.

Let us pray: Gracious Father, who looked on the humble estate of the Virgin Mary, look also on our humble estate and grant us faith in Jesus, too.  In the name of Jesus. Amen.

The Lord created you.  He made everything that is you.  And now, by faith in Jesus, your Savior, you are also God’s dear child.  Young or old - you are God’s child. Male or female - you are God’s child by faith in Jesus.

Our text for this morning is a hymn.  It is Mary’s hymn; Mary’s song. It is also known as the Magnificat.  Mary breaks into song after the angel Gabriel and Mary’s cousin Elizabeth speak of The Child Mary is about to bear.

Our Father spoke of this Child in Genesis.  To the serpent, God said “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; the Child  shall crush your head, and you shalt bruise his heel.”  But it was not yet revealed how this Child shall come to us or how He will crush Satan’s head.

Our Father spoke of this Child in more detail by the prophet Isaiah (7:10-12)).  Syria was about to make war against King Ahaz in Jerusalem. King Ahaz was scared.  His army was small. His country was small. How could he defend Jerusalem against the mighty Syria.  So, the Lord promises to do battle the Syrians Himself. To comfort King Ahaz, the Lord is going to do a miracle.  Moreover the Lord spoke again to (king) Ahaz, saying, “Ask a miracle for yourself from the Lord your God; ask it either in the depth or in the height above.” King Ahaz can decide what the mighty miracle will be.  The more unrealistic the better! Maybe make the sun shine in rainbow colors instead of yellow.  Maybe make the moon actually be made out of cheese. Or, maybe let whales fly without wings. Maybe make men fly like birds.  King Ahaz is being commanded by God to ask for a farout, unreasonable, unrepeatable, miracle that man could never do. It will be a sign of God’s faithfulness to His creation just like the rainbow in the sky is a miracle and a promise to you.

But Ahaz said, “I will not ask, nor will I test the Lord!”  King Ahaz is dead in his unbelief.  The Lord has commanded Ahaz to name the miracle.  Unbelief says I will not ask. The Lord tests Ahaz only to name the miracle.  Unbelief says I will not test the Lord.

14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give (King Ahaz and) you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.

Unlike King Ahaz, Mary believes the Lord.

30 Then the angel (Gabriel) said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus.

Unlike King Ahaz, Mary believes the Lord.  But Mary does not know a man?

And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.

Mary believes the Lord.

And Mary sings My soul magnifies the Lord,  and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.

Mary is a young Jewish woman.  Nothing about her would make you think that God would favor Mary over all the other Jewish women.  God could have chosen the daughter of a chief priest such as Caiaphas. But God didn’t do that. God could have chosen any other woman in Israel.  But God didn’t do that. God favored Mary to give birth to God.

What does this have to do with you?  I don’t see highly exalted people gathered here this morning.  No children named Trump or Obama. No one who has an article about them on the front page of the Wall Street Journal.  No even someone above the front page fold of the Muscatine Journal.

Like Mary, you are people of no significant importance.  

But God has looked upon you in your humble estate and has had favor upon you.  Of all the people in this world that don’t believe in Jesus, God gave you faith.  Of all the Christians in the world, God knows you by name and delights in you.

You have much in common with Mary.

You gather together and sing hymns of praise to our gracious Father.  

You are invited to the Lord’s Holy Communion and delight in Him.

You remember His Word and let it ruminate in your heart.

There is no mariology in Mary’s hymn.  

Mary does not magnify herself that God chose her.  She magnifies God.

Mary does not rejoice in herself that she will bear Jesus.  She rejoices in God.

Rather, Mary rejoices that her long awaited Savior is to be born and that by means of a young woman without any claim to significance.

There is no mariology in the hymn’s you sing.

Rather, you rejoice that your long awaited Savior has been born and that He saves folks such are yourselves.  

For we are the ones, like St. Paul, who are humbled.   For even now, we are reminded of St Paul’s words in Romans chapter 7: what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do...O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!

You are the ones the Lord favors by faith in Jesus who forgives you all your sins; in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

The grace of God, which passes understanding, guard and keep you in body and soul through Jesus Christ, our Savior.  Amen.

Bible study notes - Jesus raises Lazarus

Bible study notes - Jesus raises Lazarus

Bible study notes - Jesus raises Lazarus

Bible study notes - Jesus raises Lazarus

John 11:38ff

Sunday, January 6, 2017

Martha Believes

38 Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.  39 Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.   40 Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?

It is not Martha’s faith that will accomplish the resurrection of Lazarus.  The Word of Jesus will accomplish this miracle.  Martha’s faith, however, will acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God and the miracle is the work of God.  Martha does believe.  Martha will confess her belief after the miracle.

Lazarus has been in the tomb four days.  Spices and wraps may delay but will not prevent decomposition of his body.  The smell is from the decomposition.  Thus, Lazarus is dead.  There is no room for a swoon theory (he was unconscious until he woke up in the tomb but never dead) or a theft theory (someone stole the body) and other theories to calm our inquiring minds.  

Jesus Prays

41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.  42 And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.

Lifting up eye during in prayer is an enduring posture throughout the ages.  Even Hollywood depicts this prayer posture.  It is as common as looking down with closed eyes.  Prayer begins with faith and ends in faith.  Jesus thanks His Father for listening.  He praises His Father because His Father always listens to Jesus.  However, Jesus ask His Father to raise Lazarus from the dead.  The Father sent Jesus for this purpose: that many believe the Jesus is the Son of God and that by believing they might have life in His name.  Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead.  Jesus was sent by His Father to do this for all people, even if all people do not receive it.

Many Believe in Jesus

43 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.  44 And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave clothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go.  45 Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him.

It is not the volume of Jesus’ voice that raises Lazarus.  It is the voice.  God voiced, Let there be light and there was light.  Here God voices Lazarus, come forth and he that was dead came forth.  The voice did it.  The Word of God did it.

The same is true for us in Holy Baptism.  All people are spiritual dead to the Lord.  We can do nothing from our own strength to have eternal.  So also Lazarus could do nothing from his own strength to regain his life.  However, in both cases Jesus speaks.  The Word is spoken and Lazarus is alive.  The Word is spoken in Holy Baptism and you are alive.  

Lazarus comes out of the tomb.  Generally, when we think that someone is mummified we think of Egyptian mummies.  The Israelites did not bury their dead in the same manner as the Egyptians.  Lazarus was able to stand up and walk.  (Albeit not very well).

Loose him.  It is a phrase that is also used of unbelief.  Forgiveness from God is the loosing of the cords of death from sinners.  Martha’s friends are loosing the burial cloths from Lazarus.  Once loose, sins and burial cloths drop off.  And let him go.

What is the effect?  Many believed in Jesus.

The Council does not Believe

46 But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.  47 Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles.  48 If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.  

Some of them that believed that Jesus was the Son of God told the religious leaders.  They see Jesus as a dangerous false teacher.  A teacher who does many miracles.  A blasphemous prophet who is stealing the faith of the people.  They see Jesus as a threat, therefore, to the people and to the nation.

The High Priest’s Prophecy

49 And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, 50 Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.  51 And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; 52 And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.   53 Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death.

Caiaphas, motivated by evil, speaks the Word of God.  He is correct.  It is expedient that Jesus be the atoning sacrifice for your sins.  Jesus will gather together in one the children of God.  Jesus will accomplish this to the glory of God even though Caiaphas does believe that Jesus is the Savior.

Jesus Is Quiet

54 Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews; but went thence unto a country near to the wilderness, into a city called Ephraim, and there continued with his disciples.  

Jesus will act at the proper time.

The Lord’s Passover Draws Near

55 And the Jews' passover was nigh at hand: and many went out of the country up to Jerusalem before the passover, to purify themselves.  56 Then sought they for Jesus, and spake among themselves, as they stood in the temple, What think ye, that he will not come to the feast?  57 Now both the chief priests and the Pharisees had given a commandment, that, if any man knew where he were, he should shew it, that they might take him. (Jn. 11:38-57 KJV)

This takes place just before Holy Week.  Many travel to Jerusalem to celebrate the Lord’s Passover.  The ecclesiastical leaders are seeking to kill Jesus.  The people are wondering:  Will Jesus observe the Lord’s Passover when power people seek to kill Him, or not?

And that will be our question next week.

If you want to do some homework, read John chapter twelve.

But most importantly, receive the forgiveness of your sins by faith in Jesus.