Sermon Series: The First Christmas
Sermon 4: Mary (Luke 1:26-38)
Date: December 24, 2023
Some view doubt as something that harms faith. The thinking suggests that possessing any level of doubt is a sign of small faith and a belief in a small God. One application of this idea is this; earnest prayer requests go unanswered because the problem is a lack of faith. To say it another way, God didn’t heal, provide, or intervene and it was all because the one praying couldn’t muster up the right amount of faith. But this is not what is recorded in the Scriptures. The Bible is full of doubters. One of those doubters is right there in the Christmas story- Mary. Mary seemed ill-equipped for the task laid before her and because of this she showed a measure of doubt. But as we investigate Luke’s account of her story, we can discover her doubt was not the opposite of faith. But rather her doubt was a critical step in
her journey of faith.
Doubter vs Cynic
There is a difference between being a cynic and a doubter. A doubter is one who pauses his/her
confidence long enough to discern the truthfulness of a situation or teaching. In this pause we seek understanding, and patiently wait for clarity. A cynic, on the other hand is one who expresses blind faith in his/her agnosticism or unbelief. This person has closed his mind to other possibilities.
1. She discovered that God knew her story, her name, and where she lived (Luke 1:26-27)
2. She learned that accepting God’s plan does not erase all questions.
a. For Mary…
i. Was “greatly troubled” (1:29)
ii. “wondered what kind of greeting” (1:29)
iii. Was full of questions “how will this be?” (1:34)
iv. ‘Astonished” and “Anxious” (2:48)
When we face uncertainty, we can be certain of God’s presence.
This Christmas story shows us that doubt is a healthy part of faith. Bring your doubts to the person of Jesus.