Monday, December 31, 2007

Mary’s Magnificat and the Book of Isaiah

These past two Sundays, in my adult SS class, I taught from Luke 1:46-55 on Mary’s Magnificat. I had just finished my series on Guarding the Gospel and these lessons were designed to be a short Christmas SS series, filling the gap until I could start my next series on the Book of Isaiah in January. Remarkably, it dawned on me (literally, as I was waking last Sunday) how closely the Magnificat parallels the general structure of Isaiah.

Isaiah begins in chapters 1-12 detailing the sin-sick condition of God’s people and ends up with several chapters regarding the promised Messiah. Chapters 13-39 present God conquering all the surrounding nations, showing God’s trustworthiness to His people. Chapters 40-66 show Israel’s ultimate salvation through the work of God’s servant. That is just a very rough 3-part outline but it matches up surprisingly well with Mary’s Magnificat:

Isaiah 1-12: Lowly condition of the people and the promised Messiah
Luke 1:46-49: Mary’s lowly condition and the great blessing of giving birth to the Messiah

Isaiah 13-39: God conquering all the surrounding nations
Luke 1:50-53: God’s mighty acts of mercy and judgment

Isaiah 40-66: Salvation through the work of God’s Servant
Luke 1:54-55: God helps His servant Israel in remembrance of His promises

This was a real blessing to me because for the longest time I didn’t know what I was supposed to teach on in January. I finally came to think that God was leading me to start back up with a series in Isaiah that I began shortly after our church first started. When I had a couple weeks to fill before I commenced with Isaiah, the Lord led me to the Magnificat and low and behold it provides the perfect introduction to our longer study in Isaiah.

It is just amazing how the Lord works these things sometimes.

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At 8:09 AM, Anonymous Todd Wood said...

The Book of Isaiah . . . excellent.


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