Ave Maria

Notes & Details

Service Date
Sunday, December 3, 2023

The 5 Hymns Of Christmas

Scripture Featured
Luke 1:42-45

Speaker Preaching
Cody John Simpson


  • Luke 1:39-45
    • This is called the Ave Maria (it is actually the only canticle that is disputed because it lacks a poetic feel).
    • Mary has already become pregnant with Jesus after being told by the Angel Gabriel of God’s plan for her to become the mother of Jesus. She is on her way to her cousin Elizabeth who is pregnant with John the Baptist (which was also announced by Gabriel). This is an exciting time. 
      • What makes this moment incredible though is that the unborn John and his elderly mother are both filled with the Holy Spirit. In this OT context, filling by the Spirit is rare and exceptional, pinpointing both God’s unique work at play. 
      • Luke doubles down on Elzabeth’s announcement – “exclaimed” & “loud cry”
      • The Holy Spirit has filled Elizabeth so that her announcement or beatitude would be prophetic, and the unborn John leaps in her womb, a leap of worship. They are in the presence of the Messiah. 
    • This is as good a place as any to do a little aside: we don’t talk a lot about Mary. Its an anti-Catholic thing, because the medieval church abused and amplified Mary far beyond what the Bible ever points to, and in effect Mary is a figure of worship, second to God (or as some say the 4th person of the Trinity). So as Protestants we can be afraid to talk about Mary. 
    • But Mary is a remarkable person we need to recognize. The last line of Elizabeth’s song gives it away: v45. Blessed is she who has believed. Mary was a woman of exemplary faith, and I mean exemplary. There are few in the Bible to match. 
  • Luke 1:26-38
    • This is reasonably frightening for Mary
      • Her age
      • Form of address by the Angel
    • Unlike Zechariah, she responds in great faith and acceptance.
  • Does Christmas evoke messages of faith to you?
    • Christmas is actually a difficult time of year for many people, and the longer you live you do accrue painful Christmas memories. Christmas very well be a time to learn again how to trust God.
  • Ultimately, we know that Jesus came into the world to save us and set us free. Through His death for our sin and brokenness we can have forgiveness from God, if we have faith. If we trust. Christmas sets this off. 
    • Christmas starts with a leap of faith. Trusting in God, even though the events that will unfold will be painful.
      • What an honour Mary was given, but look at the life – gave birth in a barn, raised her children in obscurity and then had to suffer the death of her Son. 
    • But this pain is bursting with the fruit of blessing. Not only for her but for all of us. Jesus came from it. We benefit, and as we come together as a community in faith, we can grow in supporting and blessing each other with the faith that God is growing in the tough spots of our lives.


How is God using a present challenge in your life to grow in your trust and faith in Him?