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Mary and Elizabeth
by Wayne Blank
"For with God nothing shall be impossible"
As described in the verses above, the elderly parents of John the Baptist were childless, and would have remained so, "because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years," if not for The Lord's miracle. At about the same time, another miraculous conception was about to occur, not to an elderly lady, but to a young virgin. The angel Gabriel was The Lord's messenger in both cases; he had already appeared before John the Baptist's father (i.e. "I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God," Luke 1:19), and then to Mary.
"And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.
Mary did not understand how this could be. She was just an ordinary girl, not accustomed to either appearances by angels, or their announcement that she would become the mother of a King.
"And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
Mary was amazed; how could a righteous young girl be with child?
"Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?" (Luke 1:34 KJV)
The Lord's answer, as delivered by Gabriel.
"And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible.
Fact Finder: Both Jesus Christ and John the Baptist were born from miraculous conceptions, first John, then Jesus. What was the purpose of John the Baptist, a man who would not have otherwise existed?