Read Luke 1:26-38
Confidence in God’s Promises
When Mary was visited by the angel Gabriel, she was called “highly favored” and “blessed…among women” (Luke 1:28). Mary’s reaction to seeing an angel was the typical one: “she was troubled” (Luke 1:29). Throughout the Scriptures, when an angel appeared to a person, that person was generally troubled or afraid. Thus, Gabriel said to Mary, “Do not be afraid, for you have found favor with God” (Luke 1:30).
Then the angel told Mary why she was “highly favored” and “blessed”: she was the woman through whom God would bring “the Son of the Highest” into the world (Luke 1:32). Mary questioned the angel further, saying, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?” (Luke 1:34).
Was Mary exhibiting doubt in the word of Gabriel here, or was she simply seeking clarification? We must be very careful that we do not impugn upon her doubt when we do not have the full story. Mary was well aware of how babies were made, and she was also aware she had not participated in such activities. How then could she bring a child into the world?
A prophet of old said, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). Indeed, as Gabriel said, “For with God nothing will be impossible” (Luke 1:37).
After the angel’s explanation, Mary did not ask any further questions. She accepted the message and showed great faith, saying, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38).
Are we as confident as Mary in the promises of God? He has promised many things contingent on our faithful obedience, but how often do we doubt and search for loopholes? This is not to suggest that we should never seek further information or clarification; when we do not fully understand something that God says, we certainly should ask questions! But when we receive the answer, are we satisfied that God will deliver on His promises?