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Wesley's Notes / Commentary on Luke 1:26-38 (Annunciation to St. Mary)

From Wesley's Notes. John Wesley (1703-1791).

26. In the sixth month - After Elisabeth had conceived.

27. Espoused - It was customary among the Jews, for persons that married to contract before witnesses some time before. And as Christ was to be born of a pure virgin, so the wisdom of God ordered it to be of one espoused, that to prevent reproach he might have a reputed father, according to the flesh.

28. Hail, thou highly favoured; the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women - Hail is the salutation used by our Lord to the women after his resurrection: thou art highly favoured, or hast found favour with God, ver. 30, is no more than was said of Noah, Moses, and David. The Lord is with thee, was said to Gideon, Judg. vi, 12; and blessed shall she be above women, of Jael, Judg. v, 24. This salutation gives no room for any pretense of paying adoration to the virgin; as having no appearance of a prayer, or of worship offered to her.

32. He shall be called the Son of the Highest - In this respect also: and that in a more eminent sense than any, either man or angel, can be called so. The Lord shall give him the throne of his father David - That is, the spiritual kingdom, of which David's was a type.

33. He shall reign over the house of Jacob - In which all true believers are included.

35. The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee - The power of God was put forth by the Holy Ghost, as the immediate Divine agent in this work: and so he exerted the power of the Highest as his own power, who together with the Father and the Son is the most high God. Therefore also - Not only as he is God from eternity, but on this account likewise he shall be called the Son of God.

36. And behold, thy cousin Elisabeth - Though Elisabeth was of the house of Aaron, and Mary of the house of David, by the fathers side, they might be related by their mothers. For the law only forbad heiresses marrying into another tribe. And so other persons continually intermarried; particularly the families of David and of Levi.

38. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord - It is not improbable, that this time of the virgin's humble faith, consent, and expectation, might be the very time of her conceiving.

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