Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

THE THREE WISE . . WOMEN
Luke 1:26-48 & Luke 2:36-38

Luke 1:26-48
26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee, called Nazareth, 27 to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And coming in, he said to her, "Hail, favored one! The Lord {is} with you." 29 But she was greatly troubled at {this} statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. 31 "And behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. 32 "He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David;

33 and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and His kingdom will have no end."

34 And Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?" 35 And the angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy offspring shall be called the Son of God.

36 "And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. 37 "For nothing will be impossible with God." 38 And Mary said, "Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her. 39 Now at this time Mary arose and went with haste to the hill country, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it came about that when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 And she cried out with a loud voice, and said, "Blessed among women {are} you, and blessed {is} the fruit of your womb! 43 "And how has it {happened} to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 "For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy.

45 "And blessed {is} she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord." 46 And Mary said: "My soul exalts the Lord, 47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. 48 "For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed. (NAS)
 

Introduction Christmas Humor Received from the Christianity Net Connection Newsletter (a service of Christianity Today):
The Rowandale church band was meeting for their Christmas service practice. The female pianist, Melanie, was getting more and more flustered as she flipped through her music. Finally, she exclaimed to the other five male band members, "I can't find 'Good Christian Men"!

To which the drummer quipped, "You have a choice of five right here." - Cheryl Liessens, Winnipeg, Manitoba

I have gotten some attempts at humor as I mentioned this sermon title. But just as there were three wise Men there were three Wise Women. Please follow.
 
 

1.    The Wise Woman . . Mary


A.    Mary Was Wise In Her . . Behavior. Luke 1:26-34
26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee, called Nazareth, 27 to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And coming in, he said to her, "Hail, favored one! The Lord {is} with you." 29 But she was greatly troubled at {this} statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. 31 "And behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus.    32 "He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; 33 and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and His kingdom will have no end." 34 And Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?"

        1.    Behavior in the . . Pondering. v 29
        2.    Behavior in the . . Plan. v 34
        3.    Only Question she ask.

B.    Mary Was Wise In Her . . Beliefs. v 35-38
35 And the angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy offspring shall be called the Son of God. 36 "And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. 37 "For nothing will be impossible with God." 38 And Mary said, "Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.

        1.    Beliefs About the . . Power of God for Her. v 35
        2.    Beliefs About the . . Power of God for Elizabeth. v 36
        3.    Beliefs About the . . Plan of God. v 38

C.    Mary Was Wise In Her . . Blessing. Luke 1:46 - 48
46 And Mary said: "My soul exalts the Lord, 47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. 48 "For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed. (NAS)

        1.    Blessing to . . God. v 46-47
        2.    A Blessing to . . Generations.. v 48

Illustration
In 1962, the Sawi people of New Guinea still lived in relative isolation. They were head-hunting cannibals. Their culture could not be more different from that of Don and Carol Richardson, and yet this missionary couple attempted to share Christ with them. In fact, two rival Sawi tribes, fascinated by the Richardsons, moved their villages right around the missionaries' jungle home.

But Don became frustrated by his inability to find a point of contact. He was also discouraged by the 14 civil wars he had already counted right outside his front door now that the two tribes lived side by side. Eventually, the Richardsons decided to leave. However, the Sawi response surprised them: "If you'll stay, we promise we'll make peace in the morning."

The next morning the Richardsons awoke to see the most amazing ritual they had ever witnessed. The two tribes were lined up outside their houses, on either side of the clearing. Finally, one man dashed into his hut, grabbed his newborn son, and began to run across the meadow towards the other tribe. His expression betrayed absolute agony. His wife ran after him, screaming and begging him to give the baby back to her.

But her husband wouldn't stop. He ran over to the other tribe and presented the boy to them. "Plead the peace child for me. I give you my son, and I give you my name," he said. Moments later, someone from that tribe performed the same agonizing sacrifice with the same intensity and passion. Richardson found out later that as long as those two children remained alive, the tribes were bound to peace. If they died, then literally all hell would break loose--cannibalism, murder, civil war.

While this amazing scene unfolded before him, Don suddenly realized that this was the analogy he needed to communicate Christ. The next time he spoke to the Sawi elders he told them of the perfect Peace Child, Jesus. Eventually, droves of Sawi became followers of Christ.

Several years later, on Christmas day, hundreds of Sawi from every tribe - tribes that had warred and cannibalized each other for many years - gathered together for a feast for the first time. A Sawi preacher stood up and read in his own language a scripture that few people in the history of the world have ever understood so clearly: "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulders, and He shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Later, the Richardsons would write that it was the best Christmas they had ever experienced. It was the best day the Sawi had ever known. Adapted from Peace Child by Don Richardson (Regal, 1976) in Mars Hill Review, Fall 1994. Pages 62-63.

Application

Yes Mary was a wise woman.
 
 

2.    The Wise Woman Elizabeth. Luke 1:39-45


A.    Elizabeth Was Wise In Her . . Awareness. v 39-41
39 Now at this time Mary arose and went with haste to the hill country, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it came about that when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

        1.    An Awareness In Her . . Womb. v 41 a
        2.    An Awareness In Her . . Witness. v 41 a also Rom 8:16
16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, (NAS)

Illustration
There is sensitivity In the Womb, Fathers Talking to the unborn Child. They measured impulses.
 

B.    Elizabeth Was Wise In Her . . Announcements. v 42 - 44
42 And she cried out with a loud voice, and said, "Blessed among women {are} you, and blessed {is} the fruit of your womb! 43"And how has it {happened} to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 "For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy.

        1.    Announce about Mary. v 42
        2.    Announce about Jesus.. v 42
                a.    My Lord to an unborn Fetus, In the first Trimester.

C.    Elizabeth Was Wise In Her . . Affirmations.. v 45
45 "And blessed {is} she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord." (NAS)

        1.    Affirmed Mary's Faith. v 45

Illustration
I recently read a story of a missionary team that had been invited to Russia to teach Christianity. It was Christmastime, and as they taught the story of Christ's birth at an orphanage, everyone listened in amazement. None of the kids or the staff had ever heard it before.

One of the missionaries wrote: "We gave the children some materials and instructed them to create the manger scene that they had just heard about. All went well until I got to one table where little Misha sat; he looked to be about 6 years old and had finished his project.

"As I looked at the little boy's manger, I was startled to see not one, but two babies in the manger. I called for a translator to ask why. Looking at his completed manger scene, the child began to repeat the story accurately, until he came to the part where Mary put the baby Jesus in the manger. Then Misha started to ad-lib his own ending to the story.

"He said, 'And when Mary laid the baby in the manger, Jesus looked at me and asked me if I had a place to stay. I told him I have no mama and no papa, so I don't have any place to stay. Then Jesus told me I could stay with him. So I got into the manger, and then Jesus looked at me and he told me I could stay with him forever.'

"Putting his hand over his face, Misha's head dropped to the table and his shoulders shook as he sobbed and sobbed. He had found someone who would never abandon nor abuse him, someone who would stay with him forever."(7)

Application

Elizabeth was a wise woman.
 
 

3.    The Wise Woman . . Anna. Luke 2:36-38


Introduction
Tradition says that the tribe of Asher was noted for the beauty and talent of its women, who for these gifts, were qualified for royal and high-priestly marriage

A.    Anna Was Wise In Her . . Service. v 36-37
36 And there was a prophetess, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with a husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. And she never left the temple, serving night and day with fastings and prayers.

        1.    Served in Her . . Presence. v 36-37 a
        2.    Served in Her . . Prayers. v 37 b

B.    Anna Was Wise In Her . . Sharing. v 38
38 And at that very moment she came up and {began} giving thanks to God, and continued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. (NAS)

        1.    How are Old Testament People Saved?

Illustration
James Dobson Story, a boy severely retarded. Hugged a man and he cried. No one has hugged me in 20 years.     Father said "Our boy shares more than we do."
 
 

Application

Anna was a wise woman in her Service and her sharing.
 

YES THERE WERE THREE WISE WOMEN

1 . The Wise Woman . . Mary

2. The Wise Woman Elizabeth.

3. The Wise Woman . . Anna.