As the Gospel story begins, a newly pregnant Mary is arriving at her cousin Elizabeth’s home. They share a warm embrace. It is a tender, familiar scene.
But we can’t let sentimentality prevent us from seeing the deeper story behind these two women.
What happens next is a herald of what is to come: Elizabeth recognizes the presence of the Living God.
When Luke writes that Elizabeth was “filled with the Holy Spirit,” he uses language associated with prophets, or others who are about to speak out in prophesy under the power of the Holy Spirit. In a time and place when women had very little power or value, the Holy Spirit speaks through an older, longtime barren woman to reveal the Messiah’s arrival.....Read more here