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Mary’s Visit to Elizabeth in Hebron

Written by Noreen Jacks. Posted in

The gospel writer, Luke, portrays a wonderful story that recounts the reunion of two expectant women, both of whom were unlikely candidates for pregnancy. The teenage Mary, who knew not man, was a kinswoman of the elderly, previously-infertile Elizabeth. Mary is informed by an angel that she will bear the divine Son of God. The angel also tells Mary about Elizabeth’s miraculous conception in old age, prompting her to make a visit to Hebron where Mary’s cousin Elizabeth lives with her husband, Zacharias, the priest:

39Now at this time Mary arose and went in a hurry to the hill country, to a city of Judah, 40and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. Luke 1: 39-40

The two cousins greet each other with exuberant joy and numerous blessings in accordance with the custom of the day. Imagine their animated conversation! Thankfully, some of their spirited dialogue has been recorded for our benefit. Both women are gloriously filled with the Spirit of the Living God, and both are bearing sons that were miraculously conceived. Listen to the profound words of Elizabeth as the babe within her aged womb leaps for joy, a most unusual phenomenon that is recorded in the following passage:

Prophetic Fulfillment of Luke 1:15: 41When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42And she cried out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43And how has it happened to me that the mother of my Lord would come to me? 44For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy. 45And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord.” Luke 1:41-45

There is much to learn from the dialogue that ensues between the two kindred spirits, both of whom are with-child. The greatest blessing in Elizabeth’s life occurs when the Holy Spirit reveals to her that Mary is carrying the Messianic hope of the ages within her. Elizabeth’s honor is beyond comprehension! She responds with fervent words of worship and prophetic blessings: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! Elizabeth is in the presence of the Savior of the World! Can you feel her joy? No doubt the supernatural revelation that Elizabeth has just received fills Mary with blissful elation, reassurance, and comfort. The angel’s prophetic words came to pass exactly as spoken (Luke 1:26-38). Hallelujah!

What can we learn from this ancient narrative? We serve the God of the impossible!

*This article has been excerpted from my workbook: Barrenness in the Bible – Curse or Blessing? If you have any barren areas in your life; you will find encouragement and hope in this Bible study, available from noreenjacks.com. ($14.00 plus $4.00 shipping and handling, tax included)

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