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Thursday, September 8, 2016

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Birth of Mary

Micah 5:1-4 or
Romans 8:28-30
Psalm 13:6
Matthew 1:1-16, 18-23

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"Those whom He foreknew He predestined to share the image of His Son." —Romans 8:29

It's not surprising when children look like their parents; after all, children inherit their genetic makeup from their parents. However, Mary looked like Jesus. Although she was Jesus' mother, she was made in the image of her Son (Rm 8:29). This is because those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son (Rm 8:29).

Mary was conformed to the image of God. Her birth prefigures our new birth in Christ. All who are in Christ Jesus have become a new creation (2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15). All who are reborn in Jesus are born again, begotten from above, remade in the image of God's Son (Jn 3:3; Rm 8:29). At our Baptism, we were born into new life, born into the kingdom of God, adopted into His family (Rm 8:14). He gave us new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Pt 1:3).

Nicodemus learned from Jesus that birth into the kingdom of God is a reversal of human thinking (Jn 3:4ff). So it is with God's genetics. We are literally remade. It's as if our DNA is completely remade into a new person, though we have the same body. God's new creation turns man's order upside-down (see Acts 17:6 in the Greek).

Prayer:  Father, turn my lifestyle right-side-up. Transform me by the renewal of my mind (Rm 12:2).

Promise:  "[Jesus] shall be peace." —Mi 5:4

Praise:  Mary rejoiced, praising God and saying: "I am the handmaiden of the Lord, let it be done unto me according to Your will" (see Lk 1:38).

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
(Be equipped to live in the unity of the Holy Spirit through a retreat on the Acts of the Apostles, Oct. 21-23. This retreat will show how unity and joy can be ours when we join our wills to the Father's. Call 513-373-2397 or see our website for more information.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 23, 2016

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