Monday, February 15, 2010

A True Servant

Luke 1:38
(38)  And Mary said, "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.

(38)  εἶπεν δὲ Μαριάμ, Ἰδοὺ ἡ δούλη κυρίου· γένοιτό μοι κατὰ τὸ ῥῆμά σου. καὶ ἀπῆλθεν ἀπ' αὐτῆς ὁ ἄγγελος.

I think that in our fear of committing some of the Catholic mistakes with Mary we Protestants move too far away from her.  However, she is a hero of the Bible as much as any of the big Old Testament guys.  In fact, she generally went without any major sins, unlike most of them.  Of course, there was the matter of questioning her Son's sanity, but overall she was incredibly faithful.

This profession of her faith encourages me greatly.  As you have probably heard, the word ἡ δούλη could also mean "slave."  We tend to shy away from that word in America because of the horrible oppression against slaves in the South, but I think that is a better word than "servant."  Mary saw herself as completely submissive to the Lord's will.

On top of that, she adds γένοιτό μοι κατὰ τὸ ῥῆμά σου, which I think was translated perfectly in the ESV.  Are we that submissive to God's Word?  Do we believe it no matter what?  Do we see it as perfect and completely worthy of trust?  Or do we run it through the filter of what we think is best?  Do we look at it through the eyes of our culture or do we take it for what it says?

Taking God's Word for what it says makes it a lot easier to come up with doctrine, but it makes it much more difficult to live authentic Christian lives.  God's Word holds us to a very high standard.  Let's act as if we believe this.

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