it happened like this

The birth of Jesus happened like this.

Zacharias was performing his priestly functions, when an angel of the Lord appeared on the right side of the incense-altar. When Zacharias saw him, the angel spoke to him,

“Do not be afraid, Zacharias; your prayers have been heard. Elisabeth your wife will bear you a son, and you are to call him John and he will make a people fully ready for their Lord.”

But Zacharias replied to the angel, “How can I know that this is true? “I am Gabriel,” the angel answered. “I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and tell you this good news.

Then, six months after Zacharias’ vision, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a Galilean town, Nazareth by name, to a young woman who was engaged to a man called Joseph.

The girl’s name was Mary. The angel entered her room and said, “Greetings to you, Mary. O favored one! – The Lord be with you!” But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; God loves you dearly. You are going to be the mother of a son, and you will call him Jesus. He will be great and will be known as the Son of the most high. The Lord God will give him the throne of his forefather, David, and he will be king over the people of Jacob forever. His reign shall never end.”

Then Mary spoke to the angel, “How can this be,” she said, “I am not married!” But the angel made this reply to her – “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, the power of the most high will overshadow you. Your child will therefore be called holy – the Son of God. Your cousin Elisabeth has also conceived a son.

With little delay Mary got ready and hurried off to the hillside town in Judea where Zacharias and Elisabeth lived. She went into their house and greeted her cousin. When Elisabeth heard her greeting, the unborn child stirred inside her and she herself was filled with the Holy Spirit, and cried out, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is your child! What an honor it is to have the mother of my Lord come to see me! Why, as soon as your greeting reached my ears, the child within me jumped for joy!

Then Mary said, “My heart is overflowing with praise of my Lord, my soul is full of joy in God my Savior. The one who can do all things has done great things for me – oh, holy is his Name!

Mary was engaged to Joseph, just before their marriage, she was discovered to be pregnant.

Joseph (her future husband) was a good man and did not want to see her disgraced. He planned to break off the engagement quietly. While he was turning the matter over in his mind an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife! What she has conceived is conceived through the Holy Spirit, and she will give birth to a son, whom you will call Jesus.

When Joseph woke up he did what the angel had told him.

Joseph married Mary. Mary gave birth to a son and they gave him the name Jesus.

The song “Mary Did You Know” (written by our friend Buddy Green) is the fulfillment of the message Gabriel delivered to Mary the night he visited her. I hope you can pause and listen as you reflect on the birth of our KING.