Note: I originally published this December 3, 2010 over on FPR.
The popular Christmas song “Mary Did You Know?” by Mark Lowry is a pretty song is many ways. However it is also stupid.
Did Mary know? Well, she was visited by an angel of God. See the following from Luke Chapter 1:
26. And in the sixth month the aangel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
27. To a avirgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.
28. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among awomen.
29. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
30. And the angel said unto her, aFear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
31. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name aJESUS.
32. He shall be great, and shall be called the aSon of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the bthrone of his father cDavid:
33. And he shall areign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no bend.
My guess then is that she knew. Unless she somehow totally forgot about this visitation by an angel. The song is meant to be simple and cute. But it treats Mary like she is clueless. While it is not unusual to see female characters treated this way…the is inconsistent with how Mary is portrayed by the Bible.
Did Mary know? Heck ya! And she was one of the few who did know. She was an active player in one of the greatest stories every told. She was the mother of the Christ and she knew it.