Faith to Receive Christ

While reading Scripture in my personal worship time this week, I was reading about the angel declaring God’s message to Mary about her being chosen to be the mother of the only begotten Son of God sent to be the Saviour of the world. As I was reading it and meditating on it, I was struck by the reality of the faith Mary had to exercise in the message God sent to her in order for her to experience the promise God was offering to her. She had to listen to the message of God from the messenger God had sent to her in order to know what God had planned for her. This is exactly what any person had to do in order to know they were a sinner in need of a Saviour who is Christ the Lord; they had to listen to the message of God offered by the messenger God sent to them. The messenger may be simply reading the Scripture or a Gospel tract; it may be a believer being obedient to God’s will to share the Gospel with others; it might be a preacher preaching God’s Word in a worship service; but no matter how the message is being offered, it must be listened to in order to bring conviction and convincing into the heart of the one receiving it. However, not only did Mary have to listen to the messenger of God deliver the message of God, she also had to understand what was being said. She expressed her confusion and asked for some clarification in regards to the message she was hearing. When we witness to someone or offer counsel to someone from the Word of God, we must make sure they understand what is being said and we need to ask if they need any clarification. Even at this point nothing had changed in her situation. It was not until she exercised faith in what she heard and she agreed with what was being said to her and she submitted to God’s will for her did she experience Christ coming into her. The same is true for any person to be saved. They are not saved until they exercise faith in the Gospel message that has been communicated to them. They will not exercise that faith until they agree with God about what His Word is saying to them about their need. And they will never agree with God about what is being said if they do not understand the truth of it by listening to it. When Mary said, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word”, did anything change for her and in her. When we submit to the will of God and the message of God about our need of Salvation, then we receive the gift of God of forgiveness of our sins and that is when the Spirit of God comes within us to make us born into the family of God. Which is very similar to what happen to Mary when she became pregnant with the only begotten Son of God, Emmanuel, the Christ, our Saviour!