The Songs of Christmas and Mary's Shame

John York and RUBEL SHELLY: The pregnancy of an eighth-grade girl in Nazareth of the first century would outdo any shame we could imagine in a similar situation today. Would her mother have believed her story? Would her family have been engulfed in shame? Was it Mary's family who suggested that - possibly for her own safety - she go to visit her cousin Elizabeth?

"As co-editor of Wineskins brother Cope published Andre Resner's vulgar article characterizing the Lord's mother as "another sexually questionable woman." In the April 1993 issue of Wineskins Cope wrote an especially shameful piece entitled "Cheers: A Minister's Fantasy Ending." This was shocking because Cheers glamorized illicit sex and perversity from its debut in 1983 through the final episode in 1993.

"Apparently the Fifth and Highland elders (including Royce Money, president of ACU; Randy Becton and Glen Owen, of the Herald of Truth) approve brother Cope's writing and sermonizing. Resource

"In recent letters addressed to Royce Money, president of Abilene Christian University; Jack Reese, chairman of the department of graduate Bible and ministry at ACU; and Ian Fair, dean of the College of Biblical Studies at ACU, fawn before the president, diminish themselves, deceive the board, and insult a trusting brotherhood as they undertake the defense of the indefensible.

Read how Jack Reese, "Among the Scholars" is NOT PERMITTED to speak the truth because they have rejected truth. And Carroll D. Osburn who cannot shoot STRAIGHT. And how C. Leonard Allen and Richard T. Hughes pervert the Bible and history to REWRITE the history of the Restoration Movement.

"The matter at issue, again, is the infamous Resner article denying the virgin birth of the Son of God. In the November 1992 issue of Wineskins magazine Andre Resner calls Matthew "sneaky" and says Mary was "another sexually questionable woman." Resner, an ACU professor, compares the virgin mother of the Lord to two adulteresses and a prostitute. he asks, "Why should not Messiah be born of similar circumstances?

"Resner explains, according to the Fair statement, he was writing to those born after 1945. He did not realize that some of us born before 1945 would read the article. He claims that he wrote in a style and manner baby boomers would understand but that would offend older brothers and sisters

"Several baby boomers have told me they understand "sexually questionable" to mean "sexually questionable." How odd! Resource

See how Mike Cope uses several CODE WORDS when dancing on the rim: a homosexual image among the Greeks and those who PIPED hoping to get Jesus down and dirty in the Dionysus song and dance.

We begin this review by reminding the reader that Rubel Shelly uses Narrative Theology to turn the terminal sin of musical idolatry at Mount Sinai into a "pattern for Christian worship and community." Furthermore, the theory declares that the later-remembered writings were used by John and the philosophical sieve of Greek thought and his own personal agenda to write his material.

Dr. Shelly admits "taking liberties" with the resources and advises those at Woodmont to go thou and do likewise.

Therefore, it is probably intentional that the stories in the Bible are reconstructed in Narrative Theology form to make up a story to fit our own human condition. While the motives may be pure, Peter declared that that which had been written was not open to "private interpretation" which means "further expounding." The Word of Christ does its work only when we teach it "as it has been taught." Indeed, "giving heed" to the Word is the principle "worship" word for the assembly.

It is one thing to accuse Mary of shameful conduct and quite another to say that she was considered worthy of shame by her society. However, it is still another to teach as fact that she was shamed. Mary was espoused which was more than an engagement.

While taking liberties with Scripture may be heart felt, we do not believe that it is consistent with the claims of Scripture or 2,000 years of faith that the "document" of Christianity is the Bible. John Locke would say that rejecting the Bible as the basis of faith and practice constitutes a different religion as Catholicism is a religion different from most Protestant churches.

The Songs of Christmas (Luke 1 & 2)

We count the word "shame" 13 times.

[Note: This sermon was preached as a dialogue with John York.]

The rejection of inspiration naturally gives rise to questioning whether the story of Mary might not have been Luke's later "sieving" the somewhat-forgotten facts through the developing theology, philosophy and Luke's personal agenda. Therefore, we will look at a few "out takes" from the above linked sermon which you should read fully to make sure that I have not misrepresented the preachers.

The Issue of Christmas Music:

John York: Luke is the Gospel writer who must have liked music because he includes four different songs in his telling of the birth narrative. We know them as Mary's Song (1:46-55), Zechariah's Song (1:67-79), the Angels' Song (2:13-14)

No! That is a lie. These were prophesies: a Prophet often chanted his prophesies as a Judgment. In the case of 2 Kings 3: Elisha Prophesying with a Harpist. We have never read of Luke the Great Musician. The SECTARIANS people at the time were rhetoricians, sOPHISts (the serpents or sorcerers in te book of Revelation), singers and musicians. Flute players were normally prostitutes, male ad female. They were regulated in Athens by the same officials who regulated "casting out" of Dung and dead bodies. That is why Jesus CAST OUT the minstrels or "Musical Worship Teams" more or less violently as one casts out dung. They are part of the Prostitute church of Revelation 18 where the performing artist under Apollo will be again cast back into hell.

The word "music" is the Greek "sumphonia." The poetry here is not remotely connected to "music." And certainly not similar to "the twelve days of Christmas" which may be more pagan than Christian.

Arnobius wrote:

32. But let there be, as you wish, honour in wine and in incense , let the anger and displeasure of the deities be appeased by the immolation and slaughter of victims:

are the gods moved by garlands also, wreaths and flowers, by the jingling of brass also, and the shaking of cymbals , by timbrels also, and also by symphonious pipes ?

[Symphoniae. Evidently musical instruments; but while Isidore speaks of them as a kind of drum , other writers call them trumpets and pipes.]

What effect has the clattering of castanets , that when the deities have heard them,

they think that honour has been shown to them, and lay aside their fiery spirit of resentment in forgetfulness?

Or, as little boys are frightened into giving over their silly wailings by hearing the sound of rattles , are the almighty deities also soothed in the same way by the whistling of pipes?

and do they become mild, is their indignation softened, at the musical sound of cymbals?

Mary extolled or praised God by reciting familiar Biblical statements. Hannah as "proof text" proves that she would not have "sung the song in church."

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, Luke 1:68

And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; Luke 1:69

Mary never "sang a song" because singing in our sense of the word simply was not done in the synagogue or school of the Bible.
And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, Luke 1:46

The Greek epo can mean anything from "speak" to "write." Since her soul magnified the Lord we have no evidence that her voice was heard any more than Hannah's. Furthermore, Mary was speaking to God and not SINGING a SONG. Neither was Hannah "singing."
And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Luke 1:47
Jesus said that the Father seeks only those who worship IN SPIRIT. That means the PLACE of the mind. Mary was "jumping for joy" or "exulting" IN HER SPIRIT. Mary goes on to quote Scripture because she had, as with all children, memorized many passages of Scripture in the synagogue where "THERE WAS NO PRAISE SERVICE" but learning long passages so that she could SING in here SPIRIT.

Mary was quoting Hannah so we doubt that this is an honest "proof-text" for a MUSICAL PATTERNISM:
AND Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 1S.2:1

Prayed is "officially or mentally." Said can mean to commune. We know that earlier, Hannah "spake in her heart" just as David "communed with his own heart."
Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken. 1 Sam 1:13
The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. 2 Sam 22:3

Therefore, "taking liberties" with the Book of John also "takes liberties" with the Word of God. Isn't that "over the edge?"

Zechariah "prophesied" which may have been chanted but it was not a song in the "musical sense."

Propheteuo (g4395) prof-ate-yoo'-o; from 4396; to foretell events, divine, speak under inspiration, exercise the prophetic office: - prophesy.

The angels praised God. This means to "tell a story" about God. And they didn't make music or sing four-part harmony or play instruments. Rather, when one praises God they speak about God. Their "saying" meant:

Lego (g3004) prof-ate-yoo'-o; from 4396; to foretell events, divine, speak under inspiration, exercise the prophetic office: - prophesy.

Simon didn't "sing" in our sense of "singing" or making music. We have no clue that this was "music."

and Simeon's Song (2:28-32). Plus, his story is the one that serves as the basis for most of our traditional Christmas music.

When we have a conversation we normally don't sing it or "make music."

And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; Luke 2:34

Said is: Antilego (g483) an-til'-eg-o; from 473 and 3004; to dispute, refuse: - answer again, contradict, deny, gainsay (-er), speak against.

(Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. Luke 2:35

We can take the cross--the devil's instrument--and make it into something pretty if we wish. And we can take "Simon's Song" and make it into "Xmas" songs if we wish. The X is the likely form of many Crosses, and often was the Timpana or Frame Drum on which the hide of a Jesus would be stretched and beaten to death.

When Zechariah sings of the "mighty savior" who shows mercy by rescuing us "from the hands of our enemies that we may serve him without fear" (1:74) and who will "give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace" (1:79), I think those words sound a hopeful note to human hearts in every generation.
Zechariah himself may have thought of a savior from Rome.

Luke and his readers clearly understand more - and think, as we do, of Jesus.
John: Rescue from enemies. Life without fear. Light, guidance, and peace. I think those would be positive alternatives to what many people have felt over the past few months.

Narrating the Shame Mary never felt:

Rubel Shelly: I think that is correct, and I want to develop that theme for a bit. It is a major theme in all literature.

For example, "The Luck of Roaring Camp" is a piece of American fiction from Bret Harte (1836-1902) that captures something of the hope motif that is at the heart of the Christmas story.

Roaring Camp was portrayed in Harte's story as the coarsest, meanest, toughest mining town in the Wild West of 1805. It was a terrible place where theft and murder were commonplace, inhabited entirely by men - and
one "coarse, and, it is to be feared, a very sinful woman" named Cherokee Sal. Sal died in the process of giving birth to a baby.
Here is the story: see whether you think Zecharias was CONFUSED!!

And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. Luke 1:11

And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. Luke 1:12
But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. Luke 1:13
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, Luke 1:68
And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; Luke 1:69

AND Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 1S.2:1

Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken. 1 Sam 1:13

The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. 2 Sam 22:3

As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: Luke 1:70

Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 1 Pet 1:11

And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Re 19:10

That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; Luke 1:71
To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy convenant; Luke 1:72
The oath which he sware to our father Abraham, Luke 1:73
That he would grant unto us, that we, being delivered out of the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, Luke 1:74

In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life. Luke 1:75 It is not uncommon to explain Mary's character or at least reputation by accusing her ancestors of adultery and then explaining that this is OK because the baby turned out well.

Here we see the "common story" of a human child of a camp prostitute used to prove that if her baby brought luck to Roaring Camp then this is a good pattern to explain that whatever Mary's character or reputation, it's ok because Jesus turned out to exert a huge influence on the Jews as a baby before escaping Nazareth!

To make the shame stick to Mary, however, you have to do a great leap of assuming that she was an unmarried, pregnant, 8th grade age girl, not protected by "contract," who was shamed by everyone so totally that 'perhaps' her parents sent her away.

This is the meaning of Narrative Theology: just take bits and pieces and make up your own Scripture. In the Post Modern world all truth has been smacked with the CANCELLED date and you may be as good an apostle as any to compose the new Bible for the emerging church.

Because none of the assumptions are factual, we can see that the "christian college" theology assumes that "truth begins with me" and I can teach anything I wish even if it questions God.

Next, you have to understand that Tommy Luck was drowned and carried away into the abyss. Because the "traditional" Xmas cannot tolerate the idea of Jesus growing up, He is consigned to the Abyss while Mary becomes the Mother of the God and more important. Because she is of questionable character, the worshipful MOTHER OF THE GODS was always a Sacred Prostitute in paganism.

This is not a good "pattern" for narrating our own make-believe, Christmas-like story to replace the one left by Matthew and Luke.

So we have a luckless infant of a prostitute explaining the power of Jesus as an infant who was drowned by the flood cast out by Satan.

Rubel Shelly: The men in that harsh place took her infant and put him in a box that had shipped dynamite sticks with some old flannel rags under him. After burying Sal, they tried to figure out what to do with the baby. Send him to the closest camp with women that was forty miles away? They decided there were too many dishonest, untrustworthy souls there to trust the baby's welfare to them. Try to find a woman they could hire to come to Roaring Camp to be his nurse? No "decent woman" would come there, they decided!

To make a fascinating short story shorter still, they decided to keep the baby right there in Roaring Camp - where he thrived and was named "Luck."Tommy Luck. They sent one of their number to a town eighty miles away to buy a real cradle. Another was dispatched to Sacramento to get proper blankets and supplies.

But a rosewood cradle and baby blankets made the house they were in look filthy. So those tough men got on their hands and knees and scrubbed the floor clean. But that made the dirty walls more apparent. They washed them down. But clean walls only made the bare windows look like they needed curtains. And so on and so on.

Since the baby needed lots of sleep, they stopped their raucous brawling and fighting. And as the boy began to imitate sounds and learn language, they cleaned up their vocabularies and stopped swearing. As he began to try to walk and eventually was big enough to play outdoors, they planted grass and flowers in a garden.

Trying to play with little Luck, their huge hands looked so dirty. And they smelled. So pretty soon the general store was selling lots of soap and shaving gear. You're following the story now, aren't you? The baby changed everything.
Darn! If I can use that Word. I just can't depend on people who "take liberties" with the words of Jesus and Bret Harte.

Mary is not remotely like Cherokee Sal and the Luck of Luck and the town ran out while he was still an infant.

But, here is how the story ended:

It is interesting that the rough men decided that the child should only be exposed to vocal music! Back up a bit:

"Conversation was carried on in a low tone, but the name of a woman was frequently repeated. It was a name familiar enough in the camp,&emdash;"Cherokee Sal."

Perhaps the less said of her the better. She was a coarse, and, it is to be feared, a very sinful woman. But at that time she was the only woman in Roaring Camp, and was just then lying in sore extremity, when she most needed the ministration of her own sex.

This was not someone gossiped about: she was "a very sinful woman." Was Mary a fallen woman? Did they really gossip about her? Was she really an eighth grader? Well, Gallup says that "80% of preacher stories are just made up."

The REAL STORY. Not only have Rubel Shelly and John York "taken liberties" with the Bible and Bret Harte, they may have decided that Mary had a bad reputation. As the story unwinds but left untold.

"Dissolute, abandoned, and irreclaimable, she was yet suffering a martyrdom hard enough to bear even when veiled by sympathizing womanhood, but now terrible in her loneliness.

No one ever pronounced shame on Mary: until now. Mary and every young girl were hopful that they were the virgin to whom their Messiah would be born. But, none of them would be single in the modern sense.

"The primal curse had come to her in that original isolation which must have made the punishment of the first transgression so dreadful.

But in time little Luck would be swept away by the enemy: the rushing flood of Satanic waters to be lost. A "sexually questioned woman" but now the son actually defeated by a form of Satan--if we keep to Bret Harte:

In the confusion of rushing water, crushing trees, and crackling timber, and the darkness which seemed to flow with the water and blot out the fair valley, but little could be done to collect the scattered camp. When the morning broke, the cabin of Stumpy nearest the river-bank was gone. Higher up the gulch they found the body of its unlucky owner;

but the pride, the hope, the joy, the Luck, of Roaring Camp had disappeared. They were returning with sad hearts, when a shout from the bank recalled them.

It was a relief-boat from down the river. They had picked up, they said, a man and an infant, nearly exhausted, about two miles below. Did anybody know them, and did they belong here?

It needed but a glance to show them Kentuck lying there, cruelly crushed and bruised, but still holding the Luck of Roaring Camp in his arms. As they bent over the strangely assorted pair, they saw that the child was cold and pulseless. "He is dead," said one. Kentuck opened his eyes. "Dead?" he repeated feebly.

"Yes, my man, and you are dying too." A smile lit the eyes of the expiring Kentuck. "Dying," he repeated, "he's a taking me with him,&emdash;tell the boys I've got the Luck with me now";

and the strong man, clinging to the frail babe as a drowning man is said to cling to a straw, drifted away into the shadowy river that flows forever to the unknown sea.

So, Cherokee Sal died in childbirth and Luck was drowned and was cast into the abyss.

Rubel Shelly: That is what Zechariah sang about. The Spirit let him see the future for those whom God would favor through their faith in his Son come into this disorderly and sinful world.
Those people would let the baby into their lives, and he would change everything about them. He would teach us that God is with us.
No, he would teach us that God is for us, that God had come to rescue us and give us his peace. This child's name was not Luck but Jesus, not an accident in a mining town but a purposeful act of God in Bethlehem, not a fictional tale but the Truth of God in flesh.
Jesus is never seen influencing the world as an infant!

I suppose that if the goal is to keep people uninformed (fools love to be fooled according to Paul) then you can reconstruct both inspiration and Bret Hart. The Luck of Luck ran out and he was washed away into oblivion even as the town was destroyed. Did the story end there? Is Rubel right that the disciples ran out of luck when Jesus didn't keep His promises? Was he "washed away" by the flood of false teaching in the book of Revelation? Did the Bible writers then make up from their memories a "sifted" version of the Words of Christ to fit their experiences?

If the Bible writers can do it then perhaps John York and Rubel shelly can change to facts to fit their Xmas story. Of course, it was "little Jesus meek and mild" Who taught and ruled:

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. Isaiah 9: 7

John York: As wonderful as Zechariah's words must have been for him and his family after months of silence and years of waiting for a son, imagine how different the circumstances were for Mary. I struggle with this story whenever I spend time around 8th graders. Mary is a young teenager - not even old enough to get her learner's permit! Yet she has been visited by the angel Gabriel, who has announced the birth of Messiah.

She is engaged but not married; she is a virgin who will conceive and have a son by the power of the Holy Spirit. She's an eighth grader! The God of the impossible is at work again.
Mary was not Cherokee Sal or a fallen woman or unmarried or a teenage pregnacy to be gawked at and brought into shame. Mary never expressed a sense of shame or dismay!

Whatever being espoused means, it means more than "engaged." Joseph and Mary were still "espoused" when Jesus was born. If people were so prone to Shame, Shame, why did they not know that they were not "married" when they came to worship?

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together (cohabit conjugally), she was found (perceived to be) with child of the Holy Ghost. Matthew 1:18

This was equivalent to marriage.

When they went to be taxed and Jesus was born, they were espoused and Mary was His Wife:

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. Luke 2:5

Therefore, if Mary was pregnant, she was pregnant as Joseph's wife although the marriage had not been consumated.

If espousal and taking her unto him did not constitute marriage then Jesus was not legitimate even in a social sense. But, then, they probably never had a "marriage certificate."

They are husband and wife but not sexually active. Apparently, only Joseph caught on to the fact that she was pregnant. Therefore, there is no public shame.

Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away (apoluo: Divorce her) privily. Matthew 1: 19

For the sake of making a point, if Shelly and York are correct, Mary had already become a PUBLIC EXAMPLE and shamed perhaps into having to be sent away!

However, in Scripture, Joseph could divorce her before the shame became public. By divorcing her she would have to leave the house which was HER OWN HOUSE.

Now if Mary is an espoused WIFE and Joseph is her HUSBAND then where do we get the shame, shame, shame?

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. Matthew 1: 20

Take unto means to ASSOCIATE with in a familiar or intimate relation.

That is, Mary would never be shamed.

Joseph as HUSBAND did not have to "divorce" his WIFE.

Gune (g1135) goo-nay'; prob. from the base of 1096; a woman; spec. a wife: - wife, woman.

Joseph would continue to live in HER OWN HOUSE as husband to Mary as wife:

And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Matthew 1: 21 [Jesus was called a SON and not a BASTARD}

Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Matthew 1: 22

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matthew 1: 23

Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took (associated with without shame) unto him his wife: Matthew 1:24

And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS. Matthew 1:25

But, Mary was wife and therefore there could be no shame except in Joseph's mind. People are HUSBAND and WIFE before they associate publically in that relationship, and before they "know one another" in a sexual sense.

Rubel Shelly: The pregnancy of an eighth-grade girl in Nazareth of the first century would outdo any shame we could imagine in a similar situation today. Would her mother have believed her story? Would her family have been engulfed in shame? Was it Mary's family who suggested that - possibly for her own safety - she go to visit her cousin Elizabeth?
Whatever the reason, the girl in her early teens heads for the home of Zechariah and his pregnant wife.
Rather than public shame as the possible motive for sending Mary away, perhaps we might be more charitable byasking what any young girl would do when told that someone who could not have a child was six months pregnant. Of course, because of the GOODNESS of Mary rather than the SHAME of Mary or her family, she rushed to share the good news and help Elizabeth until the Baby came.

One of the Rabbinic laws was that "one cannot have sex with a girl until she is six years old." Betrothal was often at age 12. Many people married very young girls but "do not know them" until later. If Mary was, say, a 6th grader she could be a WIFE.

To suggest that perhap's Mary's parents sent her away from the public shame is to claim, along with Cherokee Sal, that Mary was a "sexually questionable woman." However, there is no Biblical evidence. So, what is the motive for heaping shame on Mary and her parents?

The Biblical Facts: At the hint of pregnancy Joseph and Mary were already HUSBAND and WIFE. So, there could be no shame. They were not sexually active but she was not a shamed 8th grader!! If she appeared pregnant there still would be no shame. But, if she is pregnant and Joseph knows that he didn't do it then he needs to understand what has gone wrong. No one else need know and therefore no shame unless Joseph accused her and "divorced" her by making it public. Shame, Shame for identifying Mary as a shamed women!

Does the Scripture count for nothing? Are we really that free to "take liberties" with the Word of God and turn truth into a false accusation? Here is the story?

We have Mary espoused to Joseph: they are called "husband and wife." Mary does not live with her parents. So how can we take so much liberty that we can invent her parents and the suggest that they sent Mary away to escape the SHAME?

To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgins name was Mary Luke 1:27

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. Luke 1:35

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. Luke 1:36

For with God nothing shall be impossible. Luke 1:37

The angel visited Mary to tell her about Elizabeth who was barren but now six months pregnat. Wouldn't that make you want to go visit without being sent away in shame?

Is Mary shamefully pregnant and shamed and shunned by her community? No.

And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her. Luke 1:38

And Mary arose in those days, and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judaea; Luke 1:39

And entered into the house of Zacharias, and saluted Elisabeth. Luke 1:40

Whoa! Let's pause for the baptism of water that refreshes. By quoting Zacharias and being blind to his prophesy of Baptism is a MARK of lostness:

ZACHARIAS prophesying of JESUS CHRIST explains the MOST IMPORTANT meaning of the gospel for mortals.

That we should be (1) saved from our enemies, and (2) from the hand of all that hate us (Satan); Luke 1: 71
(3) To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and (4) to remember his holy covenant; Luke 1: 72
The oath which HE sware to our father ABRAHAM, Luke 1: 73

And thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways; Lu 1:76

(4) To give KNOWLEDGE of salvation (A new spirit) unto his people

(5) BY the REMISSION of their SINS, Lu.1:77

Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us, Lu 1:78

To give light to them that sit in darkness (ignorance) and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. Luke 1:79

Epiphaino (g2014) ep-ee-fah'ee-no; from 1909 and 5316; to shine upon, i.e. become (lit.) visible or (fig.) known: - appear, give light.

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Tit.2:11

But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Tit.3:4

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Tit 3:5

THE Holy Spirit does not need renewing: it is OUR spirit or mind which needs to be enlightened when we are given A holy spirit.

Dayspring is:

Anatole (g295) an-at-ol-ay'; from 393; a rising of light, i.e. dawn (fig.); by impl. the east (also in plur.): - dayspring, east, rising.

Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. Mt.2:2

Peter said that the light shines and the day star rises in our heart by honoring God's unique revelation to us. False STAFF stealing the position of vocational deacons are a MARK or SIGN that you must not listen to them.

Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things alway in remembrance. 2 Peter 1:15

For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 2 Peter 1:16

God does not tolerate men to be a priest between you and God's Word.

We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: 2 Pet 1:19

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. 2 Peter 1:20

That means that it is UNLAWFUL to further expound the inspired Word of God. You must never let anyone stand between you and faithful reading and study of the Bible. Peter did not leave an office of the POPE to define what the Bible should say. Instead He wrote:

Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things alway in remembrance. 2 Peter 1:15

For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 2 Peter 1:16

For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 2 Peter 1:17

And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. 2 Peter 1:18

Paul in Galatians shows the promise to Abraham fulfilled at baptism which was

"BECAUSE Abraham obeyed me and kept my requirements, my commands, my decrees and my laws." (Gen 26:5).

After Mary visited Elizabeth she was told:

And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord. Luke 1:45

John York: So as Mary comes to visit Elizabeth, you have two ladies meeting, one old and one young, one very pregnant, one newly pregnant; one who in the eyes of the world has had her shame removed in her old age; one who in the eyes of the world is about to endure the shame of pregnancy outside of marriage. Yet both have a very different vision of the child to whom Mary will give birth. When Elizabeth hears the voice of Mary, so does the child in her womb and the child leaps.

Rubel Shelly: Most pregnant women talk about their babies "kicking." But this child leaps, Luke says, at the presence of Mary.
In fact, Scripture identifies this "leap" as the same kicking or movement of the normal Baby:
Skirtao (g4640) skeer-tah'-o; akin to skairo, (to skip); to jump, i.e. sympathetically move (as the quickening of a foetus): - leap (for joy)
John: Elizabeth is filled with the Holy Spirit as she looks at this young girl - a girl about to endure great shame among her peers - and says "Blessed are you among women; blessed is the fruit of your womb. Why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?" Here she is in the sixth month of her own miraculous pregnancy with a child leaping inside her that an angel has proclaimed will be great, and all she can wonder is why the privilege of being in Mary's presence has been granted her! She recounts her own experience of the child "leaping for joy" inside her and she pronounces a blessing upon Mary.
What do we believe? "Newly pregnant" or "maybe sent away for shame" or God: maybe not yet pregnant? No family to be shamed into sending Mary away. No peers with whom to deal. No shame, no jeers, no peers. Nothing.

Did Mary ever endure great shame among her peers? No. Then, just how much liberties can we take even with "flawed" scripture in order to turn Mary from a highly happy, blessed young girl into one who was going to have to endure the shame?

Is it, perhaps, that Mary is the "mother of God," older and female able to mediate better that she has to endure the shame? What is the motive for making Mary into a shamed girl, like Cherokee Sal, mother of Luck of Roaring camp who will go down into defeat?

Rubel Shelly: : Mary's song of praise then follows, known for centuries as the Magnificat because that is the first word of the song in Latin which was the Catholic Bible for centuries. The poem as it appears in many translations today, really has two parts: verses 46 through 50 reflect God's dealings specifically with Mary;
And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, Luke 1:46

And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Luke 1: 47

For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Luke 1: 48

For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. Luke 1: 49

And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. Luke 1: 50

Mary doesn't just make up her song but quotes well-known Biblical statements. Perhaps the women knew more about the Word than we are led to believe. Mary has accepted the angelic message that she is to bear the Son and therefore she can apply it to herself.

Then my soul will rejoice in the LORD and delight in his salvation (Yeshuwah: Jesus). Psa 35:9

The Psalmist goes on to prophesy of the MUSICAL MOCKERS of those trying to destroy the image of Mary and Jesus:

With hypocritical mockers (spoiled members of the SECTARIAN singers and actors) in feasts, they gnashed upon me with their teeth. Psa 35:16

Rubel Shelly: :verses 51 through 55 are written in past tense but have futuristic meaning as Mary prophetically recounts what will happen as though it already has. 
Mary probably doesn't prophesy other than in the sense of quoting what a good student of the Bible would know from a life of reading or chanting the Psalms publically and in private praise:

He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. Luke 1:52 (Job 5:11)

He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. Luke 1: 53 (Ps 34:10)

He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; Luke 1: 54 (Psa 98:3. Israel no longer exists)

As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever. Luke 1: 55 (Gen 17:9)

Rubel Shelly: :First she sings God's praise for what he has done. What from the world's perspective is shame, she identifies as great blessing. "My soul magnifies, extols the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my savior." Notice: "For he has regarded the low estate - the poverty of position in the world around her - of his slave girl." Back in verse 38, Mary responded to the angel's announcement, "Here I am, the slave-girl of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." Now she says, "In the future all will call me blessed."

John York: That's not what they will be calling her for the next nine months!

Of course, none of this is true: we are not aware that anyone called Mary names or shamed her. However, just in this sermon we hear the word SHAME somehow connected with Mary nine times. We are certain that everyone under the influence of musical performance of false doctrine will go away totally convinced that Mary was taunted as a shameless prostitute for the totality of her pregnancy. First, no one would know for several months that she was pregnant. Second, she lived in her on house as wife of her own husband. Third, Not even Joseph knew that she was pregnant until it became obvious. Fourth, not yet being sexually active, Joseph was the only one who knew. Fifth, the angel convinced Joseph not to DIVORCE his WIFE. Sixth, Joseph accepted her as a faithful wife. Seventh, after visiting Elizabeth, Mary returned to HER OWN HOUSE. Eighth, they did not become sexually active until after Jesus was born. Ninth, they had to flee to Egypt so Jesus the BABY did not cause the Jews to change their lives.

In fact, officialdom sought to murder Jesus.

John York: There is a shift from the mercies of God given specifically to Mary to his revelation through this child for the rest of the world. "He has shown strength with his arm" - a reference to Old Testament texts that refer to the power of Almighty God with the phrase "strength of his arm." In contrast to the mercy given to Mary in her low estate as a slave girl, there are the proud, the arrogant, those imagining themselves to be somebody, that God with his mighty arm has scattered.
In fact, God did not make a shift: God sending His own Arm was to bring righteousness, intercession and salvation. The judging would be turned over to His Word.

And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. Isaiah 59: 16

The clergy was the proud, arrogant and scattered when Jesus warned about them. It was the "doctors of the Law" who "took away the keys to knoweldge" and were so evil and mercinary that Jesus refused to speak to them except in parables.

Thou hast broken Rahab in pieces, as one that is slain; thou hast scattered thine enemies with thy strong arm. Psa 89:10

I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there. Ps.87:4

Rahab is a "boaster" an epithet of Egypt. She and Babylon represents the Satanic attack upon God's people and the primary weapon of both was musical idolatry trying to "flood away" the mother and the child

But, God has to scatter the proud in order to bestow mercy upon those "loaded the people with the burden of spiritual anxiety from religious ritual." So, Mary may have quoted Scripture to warn that those who still take away the key to knowledge by making Mary into a shamed, teen-age pregnancy without any evidence are the proud whom Jesus fired once but they keep rising from thee earth.

And I will bring you out from the people, and will gather you out of the countries wherein ye are scattered, with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out. Eze.20:34

A million Jews with their clergy and "mega-church" was destroyed.

Furthermore, God sent Christ as His Arm because there was no man (and no musical worship team) to intercede.

Why? Why, because men are evil and they will "water the wine" and sell it to sick lambs rather than suffer for the lambs.

In all of the 'singing-construed' passages:

The premise: God has supplied the learning material and Christ is the One and Only Teacher.

The danger: If ordinary men get into the process they will twist the scriptures.

Why God would send His own Arm to radically eleminate human "Arms" with their worship armies:

We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us. Isaiah 59:11

For our transgressions are multiplied before thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them; Isaiah 59: 12

In transgressing and lying against the Lord, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood. Isaiah 59: 13

And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Isaiah 59: 14

Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey. And the Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment. Isaiah 59: 15

And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. Isaiah 59: 16

For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak. Isaiah 59: 17

Jesus defined a Son by His speaking only what He heard from the Father. He further defined the Devil as "speaking on His own." Paul defined "that which is written, the Word of Christ or Spirit" as the ONLY teaching and "singing" resource.

Both in Hebrew and Greek, the same words define both an ARM of carnal warfare and a musical instrument. The Christian does intellectual warfare with the sword of the Spirit but not with a lifeless musical instrument.

Paul said that we do not "make war" with lifeless instruments or carnal weapons.

If we do otherwise we discredit Christ as the One and only Teacher of the church:

Those who compose their own sentimental songs and "stand in the holy place" to present them are "exalting themselves above the knowledge of God." They are reaping glory for themselves and are often not obeying Christ.
(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 2 Co.10:4
The Greek literal weapon--
hoplizo (g3695) hop-lid'-zo; from 3696; to equip (with weapons [mid. and figurative.]): - arm self.

Hoplon (g3696) hop'-lon; prob. from a prim. hepo , (to be busy about); an implement or utensil or tool (lit. or fig., espec. offensive for war): - armour, instrument, weapon
By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, 2 Cor 6:7
Now, brethren, if I come unto you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you, except I shall speak to you either by revelation, or by knowledge, or by prophesying, or by doctrine? 1 Cor 14:6
And even things without life (lifeless instrument) giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped? 1 Cor 14: 7
For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle? 1 Cor 14: 8
So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air. 1 Cor 14: 9

Again, look at the Hebrew parallel:
Keliy (h3627) kel-ee'; from 3615;... vessel or weapon): - armour ([-bearee]), artillery, bag, carriage, instrument, jewel, psaltery, sack, stuff, thing, tool, vessel, ware, weapon, / whatsoever.
That chant (scatter words like tongues) to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of musick, like David; Am.6:5

Fill up with the Spirit and not of wine. Arm yourself with the Sword of he Spirit:
FORASMUCH then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind (Spirit): for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; 1Pe.4:1
That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God. 1Pe 4:2

Do not follow the wine-drinking or warfar music:
For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries: 1Pe 4:3
Paul commanded that we "speak" and the secondary act is to "sing." Therefore, Peter said that when we speak we must speak as a "prophet" which demands a "thus saith the Lord."
If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterance) of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Pet 4:11
This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sina, and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us: Act 7:38

Our personal ministering is where we use our human talents but Never, Never in speaking for Christ.

Here is the test of Rahab: the proud, those who take liberties so completely that they can turn Mary into a SHAMEFUL SPECTACLE BEFORE THE WATCHING WORLD. What is the Motive for making Mary so hated?

According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompense to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompense. Isaiah 59: 18

So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him. Isaiah 59: 19

And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the Lord. Isaiah 59: 20

And here is the test of those who are faithful to Christ Who bore ALL of the shame:

As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the Lord;

My spirit that is upon thee,

and my words which I have put in thy mouth,

shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seeds seed, saith the Lord, from henceforth and for ever. Isaiah 59: 21

Christ speaking the WORDS of God means that Christ spoke God's Message to mankind without any reserved messages for preachers:

For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God:

for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. John 3:34

It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. John 6:63

Jeremiah Prophesied against Human Teachers other than "speaking the oracles OF GOD."

Jesus said that worship would not be accepted when related to ritual "time and place." Rather, worship must be "in spirit" or in the mind as it contemplates the "truth" or the Words of Christ:

But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. Jer 31:33

And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord:

for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. Jer 31:34

Jesus placed forgiveness of iniquities at Baptism and Peter says that at Baptism God gives us co-perception or spiritual discernment which grows with use.

Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, Hebrews 10:15

This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; Hebrews 10:16

Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify,

when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 1 Peter 1:11

First, one is not considered a "brother" who does not already know the Lord.

Second, the new "Prophet" will not "teach to the tune of a hickory stick" in song or sermon. The teaching which would come to an end is the Hebrew:

Lamad (h3925) law-mad'; a prim. root; prop. to goad, i. e. (by impl.) to teach (the rod being an Oriental incentive): - [un-] accustomed, * diligently, expert, instruct, learn, skilful, teach (-er, - ing).

Erasmus defines the legalist "teacher" as the clergy, monks, princes and the pope.

"It is possible that some spiritual immaturity today may arise from other causes. It may be produced by a failure to provide an adequate program of Bible instruction for the whole church. It may be the result of indifference and lack of a real desire to know the rich things of the Word. Too often people have assumed that all the Bible should be as simple as kindergarten lessons. It that were true, it is doubtful if there would ever be such a thing as a full grown Christian. The usual Sunday morning scolding which the church receives for not doing this will only make the situation worse. (Applebury, T. R., Studies in Second Corinthians, p. 51 College Press)




Messiah would save through His Work and Word but not as "little Jesus" of Christmas fame:

And I will give them one heart, and one way, that they may fear me for ever, for the good of them, and of their children after them: Jer 32:39

And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts,

that they shall not depart from me. Jer 32:40

Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord God. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Ezekiel 18:30

Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and

make you a new heart and a new spirit:
for why will ye die, O house of Israel? Ezekiel 18: 31

Jamison-Fauset-Brown comment about private interpretation or "further expounding" Christ as God's Arm and only Teacher:

"Spirit-taught men alone can comprehend spiritual truths. This accords with 1 Corinthians 2:6,9,10,14,15, 1 Corinthians 3:1. ALFORD translates,

"Putting together (combining) spirituals with spirituals"; that is,
spiritual words to spiritual things,

which we should not do, if we were to use words of worldly wisdom to expound spiritual things (so 1 Corinthians 2:1,4, 1 Peter 4:11).

"Perhaps the generality of the neuters is designed to comprehend these several notions by implication. Comparing, or combining, spirituals with spirituals; implying both that spiritual things are only suited to spiritual persons (so "things" comprehended persons, 1 Corinthians 1:27),

and also that spiritual truths can only be combined with spiritual (not worldly-wise) words; and lastly,

spirituals of the Old and New Testaments can only be understood

by mutual comparison or combination,
not by combination with
worldly "wisdom," or natural perceptions (1 Corinthians 1:21,22, 2:1,4-9; compare Psalms 119:18).

"natural man--literally, "a man of animal soul." As contrasted with the spiritual man,

he is governed by the animal soul,
which overbears his spirit,
which latter is without the Spirit of God (Jude 1:19).
So the animal (English Version, "natural") body, or body led by the lower animal nature (including both the mere human fallen reason and heart), is contrasted with the Spirit-quickened body (1 Corinthians 15:44-46).

The carnal man (the man led by bodily appetites,

and also by a self-exalting spirit, estranged from the divine life) is closely akin; so too the "earthly." "Devilish," or "demon-like"; "led by an evil spirit," is the awful character of such a one, in its worst type (James 3:15).

receiveth not--though they are offered to him, and are "worthy of being received by all men" (1 Timothy 1:15).

they are foolishness unto him--whereas he seeks "wisdom" (1 Corinthians 1:22). [This is experimental knowledge]

neither can he--Not only does he not, but he cannot know them, and therefore has no wish to "receive" them (Romans 8:7).

Rubel Shelly: Mary's song is the first witness to the reversal of worlds that you find throughout the rest of Luke and Acts. "This child is set for the falling and rising of many in Israel," Simeon will say. "Blessed are the poor, but woe to the rich," Jesus will say in chapter 6. "The first shall be last and the last first." "He who humbles himself will be exalted; he who exalts himself will be humbled." "He who would save his life will lose it; he who loses his life for my sake will save it." 
The salvation coming into the world through Mary is about to change the standards, the worldview of how humans understand blessing and curse, success and failure.
We noted above that Messiah would come to teach the world and that God would send His own salvation. The Rahabs and Babylonians whom Jesus would defeat to allow His Word to flow forth were those like the Pharisees who did to the Old Testament what Narrative Theologians do by having to contradict the Word and bring shame on Mary as a sexually questionable women in order to "privately interpret" or "further expound" Scripture to fit their own theological agendas. Remember, that Dr. Shelly claims that this is what John is doing and perhaps John is wrong for NOT making Mary shamed and rejected and we have to correct John.

The salvaton would not be through Mary but through Jesus or Joshua meaning Jehovah-Saves.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

The "body which is prepared for me" came through Mary. However, salvation came through the Mighty God abandoning His majesty and glory to die as a common criminal. Mary had nothing to do with the salvation of mankind.

Furthermore, it was always known that God would send "another prophet" to teach what the Jews in the Exodus rejected and were blinded for:

For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, the Lord thy God hath not suffered thee so to do. Deut 18:14

The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; Deut 18:15

According to all that thou desiredst of the Lord thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not. Deut 18:16

Even Jesus and the Pharisees read the revealed Word and then had the common decency to sit down. So, guess who Jesus was outlawing?

For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on mens shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. Matthew 23:4

The burden the clergy laded was "spiritual anxiety created by religious ritual." Christ died to eleminate that burden and placed "worship" in the PLACE of the human spirit. Church would continue to be synagogue or school of the Bible but not pagan worship center:

But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, Matthew 23: 5

And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, Matthew 23: 6

And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. Matthew 23: 7

But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. Matthew 23: 8

And call no man your father (authoratative teacher or doctor of the law) upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Matthew 23: 9

Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. Matthew 23: 10

By sending His own Arm to be the One and Only Teacher and Intercessor, God silenced the human teachers of human philosophy and twisted Scripture. The only way that Jesus as Spirit can be the One Teacher is for Timothy to "give attendance to the public reading of the Word, to doctrine to exhortation." "Giving heed" is the only true worship word for the public assembly just as it was in the synagogue.

Stand over "worship teams" or performing preachers repudiate the purpose for which God send His own Son: there is no human who can teach or mediate unless he believes in and teaches the Word "as it has been taught."

But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. Matthew 23: 11

Jesus sent out evangelists to preach the Word which only happens to those who have not heard the Word. These would be servants and Paul showed the MARKS of a true and false evangelist. They "knew only Christ and Him crucified" which means that they had abandoned their own lives and gone out as servants. They were not high priests of a mega-mega-church making mega-bucks.

And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted. Matthew 23: 12

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites for ye devour widows houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. Matthew 23: 14

Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. Matthew 23: 28

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites because ye build the tombs (mega-churches) of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, Matthew 23: 29

And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Matthew 23: 30

But you do kill the prophets and quench the Spirit because you build a priestly, temple, musical, sacrificial Seeker Center (ala Apollo, Abaddon, Apollyon) rather than being Prophetic criers against ceremonial legalism.

John York: The coming of the Son of God would change the definitions of shame and honor for all people just as the pregnancies of Elizabeth and Mary had changed the identity for each. Elizabeth's life-long shame was suddenly reversed. Mary recognized that she was blessed by God and that all future generations would call her blessed,
in the midst of a culture that would otherwise have made her a shameful outcast for being pregnant outside of marriage.

If you buy that, I will sell you my last week's garbage.

* * * * * * * [After the song "Mary, Did You Know?" is presented, the dialogue resumes. . . .]

John York: Yes, Mary, what did you know? What could you know when you sang your song, when you made that trek from Nazareth to Bethlehem? When you endured the shame of teenage pregnancy, believing that somehow the rest of the world would one day call you the most blessed teenager of all?
You can read the doubts put into the mind of Mary here. But the doubt is not in the song.

In my version, Mary had no doubt! Mary was not shamed. Mary felt no shame: shame on those who try to turn her into a sexually questionable woman.

And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, Luke 1:46

And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Luke 1:47
For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Luke 1:48

For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. Luke 1:49

Where oh where does it come from? Over, and over and over Mary is a teenage, unmarried, pregnant person who is shamed and perhaps sent away from home by her parents in total disregard for Scripture. But, the study of John was begun with the claim that they would "take liberties" with the stories!!

Yes, Mary knew that her Son would be the "body" prepared for God's Spirit indwelling. She knew her history and did not doubt.

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. Luke 1:36

Mary was not sent away in shame, perhaps even to protect her. Mary, who lived in her own house as wife with her espoused husband, would have rushed to the side of Mary in great joy and ready to help Elizabeth through the last three months:

And Mary abode with her about three months, and returned to her own house. Luke 1:56

That would seem about the right time to await the birth. However, it would be too soon for Mary to return to her own house if she had been shamed into deserting in the first place. Therefore, let's call Mary blessed and not cursed.

Rubel Shelly: Two thousand years later, we celebrate the coming of God into our world, turning our pride to humility and our shame into joy, reminding us that God's mercies never come to an end. How blessed we all would be this morning if we could see God as Mary saw God.
You see, this little girl had every reason in this world to be afraid, to feel the shame and condemnation of her peers and her husband-to-be, to wonder why her life had to be thrown into such turmoil.

John York: Or, on the other hand, she might have become proud and arrogant herself - "Hey, everyone. God didn't choose you. He chose me!" She understands that it is by the mercies of God that she has been chosen. She understands that God's vision of people in this world is a different vision.

She encapsulates the God vision for us to remind us that, in the birth of this child, God is going to redefine honor and shame, exaltation and humiliation.
No, there is no redefinition of honor and shame: self promoters have always been self-honored of shameful conduct has always been shameful conduct. Mary did not rise from a shameful teenage pregnancy to reincarnate it as an honorable thing. Mary was married and there was no shame.

Rubel Shelly: : We come together this morning and celebrate the new world opened to each of us by the coming of God in the flesh. By the tender mercies of God, we live in hope and we can sing of peace and joy in our world - and that even when our life experiences this particular year have not always been peaceful or joyous. We eat and drink this morning as people of hope, as people given identity as children of God this morning because we believe the words of Mary and Zechariah.

John: As we have done in the past, we want to celebrate our identity as family this morning as we eat and drink together.

Why not honor the death of Lord Jesus Christ? Peter outlawed "private interpretation" which means "further expounding." The danger of further expounding is that you can make the world believe that Mary endured the great shame and humiliation of been an 8th grade, teenage, pregnant out of wedlock girl who was possibly sent out of town to keep from sharing the same.

Jesus Christ directly commanded baptism to Glorify His power to save as long as time shall last. Only baptism SHOWS that God's grace is powerful enough to keep His WORD from being "shot" to pieces with our vision. Baptism is Christ's work: don't repudiate Him. His message does not change to fit our "enlightened" minds. The FAITH ONLY LIE from Ephesians 2 actually shows that Baptism is the way to show forth the RESURRECTION OF CHRIST:

That in the ages to come he might SHEW (indicate by an act) the exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness toward us, through Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:7

The Lord's Supper is the way toshow forth or preach and agonize with Christ when He sings with us in the assembly: We do not celebrate the death of Christ because he died for your sins.

A faithful assembly which glorifies God does not please itself as Christ did not please Himself (Romans 15).

All of this is fabricated out of those who "take the honor to themselves" and claim to be able to reveal things totally contrary to the revealed Words of God. In the process, we have been totally convinced that Mary was a sexually questioned, 8th grade, teenager shamed by her peers.

We have seen Mary compared in shame to Cherokee Sal. We have used Luck as the picture of the power of an infant to change the world. However, in fact, Luck drowned and the "little child" called Jesus was so hated and despised that the rulers sought to murder him and he had to be carried into exile in Egypt.

Furthermore, it gives aid and comfort to pregnant, unmarried teenagers.


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