(Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
Mary: A Hebrew name, from the root of MARAH, which means bitterness or rebellion. In this case, the Hebrew virgin Maryam was not rebellious, but there was a bitterness added into her life, in the form of a sword.
MYRRH: Myrrh also comes from “bitterness.” When a tree wound penetrates through the bark and into the sapwood, the tree bleeds a resin. Myrrh gum, like frankincense, is such a resin. When people harvest myrrh, they wound the trees repeatedly to bleed them of the gum. … Courtesy of Wikipedia.
A Deeper Look at “Hail Mary”
…Through the Eyes of Scripture
Recently, a friend of mine who is in the Roman Catholic church organization, has urged me to consider Mary, the birth-mother of JESUS, and the “Hail Marys” promoted by the Marian Press. So, I have considered her and the “Hail Marys” … through the eyes of Scripture.
Along with the exhortations was a pamphlet from the Marian Press with a picture on the front of it of a popular statue of Mary, gorgeously be-robed, wearing a strangely-shaped crown which was larger than her head. She was piously poised with her hands together, as if praying. This particular statue had noticeably “European” facial features and coloring. No-one would ever have classed “this” representation of Mary as being Jewish.
The First Phrase…
There are only 4 sentences which hold the 9 phrases in a “Hail Mary” ; the prayer is very short.
It is repeated 10 times FOR EACH OF THE FIVE mysteries ( i.e., the 5 topics or segments in focus) when worshippers “do” the rosary prayers, for a total of 50 times.
Yes, 50 times
this short prayer to Mary
The first phrase is simply “Hail Mary… ” .
Let’s stop there. Is that phrase from Scripture ? Those who pray this, claim it is from Luke 1:28.
( And keep in mind this question: Does Scripture tell us to PRAY TO or LAUD any other than The LORD OUR GOD ? )
And the angel came in unto her, and said,
Hail, thou that art highly favored,
the LORD is with thee:
blessed art thou among women.
Luke 1:28, KJV
BUT, NO. The English, the Spanish, the Greek, and the Latin Vulgate only say “Hail … “ The Marian Press follows the RC teachings and includes Mary’s name in this although it is not in Luke 1:28.
Perhaps this is a small point, some might say … but more on this later.
“Hail” itself simply means “greetings” or “welcome.” It is NOT necessarily a salute of honor or worship nor is it a salute of obeisance.
Strong’s Concordance ( # 5463) states this:
(5463) KAIR0 — khah’ee-ro; a primary verb; to be “cheer”ful, i.e. calmly happy or well-off; impersonal especially as salutation (on meeting or parting), be well: — farewell, be glad, God speed, greeting, hail, joy (-fully), rejoice.
Another resource, Timothy and Barbara Friberg’s Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament , records this for KAIR0:
Page 406: KAIR0 is used as a formula of greeting or address in the imperative, implying a wish for well-being. … welcome, good morning, hail to you, hello, at the beginning of a letter — greetings, at the end of a letter — farewell. ( 2 Cor. 13:11)
HAIL, which comes from the Greek root KAIR0 may mean simply “to rejoice.”
That is its meaning in Matthew 28:9, as the Risen LORD JESUS greets the women in the garden who were running to tell His+ disciples that HE+ WAS RISEN !
This form of the verb is EXACTLY the same , only 2nd person plural “you” ( i.e., you all ) . The Risen LORD IS NOT greeting the women with “obeisance” but rather with an imperative, a command: ” YOU ALL, REJOICE ! “
Now then, the form of ” YOU, REJOICE!” found in Luke 1:28 is Xaipe and is exactly like The LORD’S words in Matthew 28:9, only SINGULAR as Gabriel addresses Mary. It is a Verb — Imperative — Present — Active– 2nd person singular ( the singular “you”) .
We know that an IMPERATIVE verb form is a COMMAND.
Hence, the angel is addressing Mary with a command . And , as the angel was Gabriel who stands in the Presence of GOD, it was a DIVINE COMMAND directly to her.
What did GOD,
through the angel Gabriel,
command Mary to do ?
“You! Rejoice !”
What was Mary to rejoice about ?
If we read carefully the well-known, oft-sung, highly-touted “Magnificat” of Mary as she rejoiced with Elisabeth her cousin, we see that Mary is MOST STRONGLY and MOST FREQUENTLY rejoicing because:
The SAVIOR+, The Messiah+,
The Redeemer+ of Israel
— The ONE+ so long promised and so longed-for —
was about to appear to Deliver HIS people !
There was no “self ” involved in the angel Gabriel’s greeting.
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And Mary was obedient to that command from the angel. Hear her words:
My soul doth magnify the LORD,
and my spirit hath rejoiced
in GOD my SAVIOR.
For HE hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden. For, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For HE that is mighty hath done to me great things;
and HOLY is His Name.
And His mercy is on them that fear HIM from generation to generation.
HE hath shewed strength with His arm;
HE hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
HE hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
HE hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich HE hath sent empty away.
HE hath holpen His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy; As HE spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever. Luke 1:46-55
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This laud from Mary OVER-WHELMINGLY points to the greatness of GOD, even in His condescension to deal with a lowly Hebrew virgin.
What were the “great things” Mary rejoiced over ?
The coming of Israel’s MESSIAH+ through a Hebrew virgin was promised long ago in Isaiah 7:14. This was one of those “great things” that The MIGHTY LORD had performed for Mary.
She knew she would be counted blest because Israel was again groaning for a Deliverer from under the harsh Roman rule… just like it groaned under Egypt’s Pharaohs. Israel DESIRED its Deliverer.
Another of the “great things” was to ANNOUNCE to her that the MESSIAH+ was on His+ way !
Furthermore, another thing was that THE LORD WAS TRUE to His WORD.
That is one of the things which made Mary burst forth into praise of The LORD! Because it was happening to her, she KNEW without a doubt that GOD’S WORD was altogether TRUE.
Thus, most of the “magnificat” is given over to re-stating the LORD’S promises under the Old Covenant. The DAY of the fulfillment of The LORD’S promises was come!
In addition, GOD her SAVIOR+ … a SAVIOR+ to save her from her own sins… was coming to bring her salvation. For salvation is of the Jews.
LET US PRAY:
Help me to REJOICE over YOU+ when YOU+ call me to a hard task which must be done to accomplish YOUR+ Divine Purpose.
Help me to do YOUR+ Will when it is distasteful to me.
And HOLY FATHER, WHO art in Heaven, help me to turn the reproaches of men into blessings. Let the reproaches of men that fall upon me as I witness for YOU be a blessing to my soul.
Let the reproaches of men be used to draw me closer to YOUR HOLY SON+ JESUS, and join HIM+ on that distasteful and painful Cross … in order to do YOUR Will .
I will to lift HIM+ up. In The Name of our SAVIOR+, The LORD JESUS CHRIST, I pray.
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