The Annunciation of Our Lord

March 25, 2023

Today's Reading: Luke 1:26-38

Daily Lectionary: Gen 49:29-50:7, 14-26, Mark 14:1-11

Luke 1:28–29: “And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be.”

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Two angels visited young women. One was evil. The other good. Both made promises of greatness. One promised a life of freedom, hidden knowledge, and independence. The other promised a cross. One pointed to something that would be so easy to take. The other spoke of something all but impossible. One offered options. The other never gave the young woman a choice.

If you were to ask the world which was good and which was evil, the answer would be near unanimous, but it was the evil angel Satan who spoke lies to Eve promising independence from God, knowledge of good and evil, and whispered of “free will” right within her grasp. Gabriel told the truth.

You shall conceive and bear a son, and you shall call His name Jesus – He shall save His people from their sins. As crazy as it sounds, nothing will be impossible with God. There is no choice. No free will. This is your blessing. The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy. The Son of God.

The Annunciation marks just one pregnancy until Christmas, almost always in the middle of lent. They’re as joined together in the grand narrative as the two angels. The tree of the garden revealed sin. It was always meant to be answered by the tree of the cross that reveals salvation. The cross lets us call evil, evil and good, good. It lets us acknowledge our sin, and in repentance, be not afraid.

Nothing is impossible with God. That’s not for you to do. It’s for Christ to do for you. Even the part where we acknowledge our sin, and in repentance, be not afraid. He will descend from heaven to become a fetus, born of a virgin and walk the road to the cross to undo death itself and then rise again just to save you. This isn’t just an arbitrary connection. It’s the presence of hope among so much that seems strange, terrifying, and upside down. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

O Lord, as we have known the incarnation of Your Son, Jesus Christ, by the message of the angel to the virgin Mary, so by the message of His cross and passion bring us to the glory of His resurrection; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.