Chapter # 1 Paragraph # 4 Study # 1
February 29, 2004
Lincolnton, N.C.

<055> Thesis: The reality of the characterization of one as "bondservant of the Lord" comes out when that one is faced with an awareness of significant need in another. Introduction: This morning we are going to begin our consideration of a new thought-unit in Luke's record. The big-picture issue in this new paragraph has its identifying marks in both Elizabeth's and Mary's persistent references to how the Lord has so highly exalted Mary. Clearly Luke wanted Theophilus to understand how God deliberately focused upon a "nobody from nowhere" so that she became "the" somebody that she has become in the recognition of fellow-believers throughout the centuries. There is a grave danger is presenting this activity of God -- it is seen in the deification of Mary by those who are called "the devout" -- but there is an equal danger in not presenting this activity of God -- the failure of men to adequately grasp their future in the plans of the God-of-this-activity. It is rather like Moses lifting up the brass serpent in the wilderness: there was the ever-present danger of men turning the gift of God into a god; but, there was the equal danger of all dying who did not have any remedy if the serpent isn't lifted up in the camp. Generally, this razor edge is everywhere because the hearts of men are inclined to worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator, but those same hearts will remain unconverted if God restrains Himself simply because of the probability of perversion.