All generations will call Mary blessed (Lk 1:48-1:48)

“God had looked

On the lowliness

Of his slave.

Surely,

From now on,

All generations

Will call me blessed!”

 

ὅτι ἐπέβλεψεν ἐπὶ τὴν ταπείνωσιν τῆς δούλης αὐτοῦ. ἰδοὺ γὰρ ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν μακαριοῦσίν με πᾶσαι αἱ γενεαί·

 

This canticle of Mary was modeled on that of Hannah in 1 Samuel, chapter 2:1-10, that praised Yahweh for the birth of her son, Samuel the prophet.  Mary’s lowliness was like Hannah’s misery.  Luke had Mary say that God had looked (ὅτι ἐπέβλεψεν) on her lowliness or the humiliation of his slave (ἐπὶ τὴν ταπείνωσιν τῆς δούλης αὐτοῦ), Mary.  However, from now on (ἰδοὺ γὰρ ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν) all generations (πᾶσαι αἱ γενεαί) would count Mary blessed or happy (μακαριοῦσίν με).  Thus, the phrase “Blessed Mary, Mother of Jesus!”  By extension, as Jesus was the son of God, Mary became known as the Mother of God.

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Against the messengers sent to Egypt (Isa 30:1-30:5)

“‘Woe to you!

Rebellious children!’

Says Yahweh.

‘You carry out a plan,

But it is not mine.

You make an alliance,

But it is against my will.

You are adding sin to sin!

You set out to go down to Egypt,

Without asking for my counsel!

You want to take refuge

In the protection of Pharaoh!

You want to seek shelter

In the shadow of Egypt!

Therefore the protection of Pharaoh

Shall become your shame.

The shelter in the shadow of Egypt

Shall become your humiliation.

Even though his officials are at Zoan,

Even though his envoys reach Hanes,

Everyone will come to shame.

They are a people

That cannot profit them.

They can bring

Neither help nor profit.

They can only bring shame and disgrace.’”

This is an oracle of Yahweh, via Isaiah, against sending messengers to Egypt to ask for help against Assyria around 703-701 BCE. These messengers were not from Yahweh. They were in fact rebelling against the will of Yahweh, so that they were only adding sin to sin. They went to Egypt without seeking the guidance of Yahweh, since they wanted to take refuge under the shadow and protection of the Egyptian Pharaoh. However, this protections will become their shame and humiliation. Even though these messengers are in the 2 Egyptian delta cities of Zoan in the north and Hanes in the south, everyone will be shamed. They will not get help, profit, or protection, but only shame and disgrace for this action.

Trust the Lord (Sir 2:1-2:6)

“My child!

When you come to serve the Lord,

Prepare yourself for testing!

Set your heart right!

Be steadfast!

Do not be impetuous

In time of calamity!

Cling to him!

Do not depart!

Thus your last days may be prosperous.

Accept whatever befalls you!

In times of humiliation,

Be patient!

Gold is tested in the fire.

Those found acceptable

Are tested in the furnace of humiliation.

Trust in him.

He will help you

Make your ways straight.

Hope in him!”

Here we have a series of admonitions about trusting God. If you want to serve the Lord, you will be tested. You need a good heart. You need to be steadfast. You cannot be hasty in times of trouble. You must cling to the Lord and not depart from him. Then you will have prosperous last days. Accept whatever happens to you. Be patient in times of humiliation. Just as gold is tested in a fire, so are you tested in the furnace of humiliation. You must trust in the Lord. He will help you. You have to make straight your ways. Hope in God! Keep hope alive!

Difficult people (Prov 29:21-29:24)

“A slave pampered from childhood,

Will come to a bad end.

One given to anger

Stirs up strife.

The hot head

Causes much transgression.

A person’s pride will bring humiliation.

Whoever is lowly in spirit

Will obtain honor.

To be a partner of a thief

Is to hate one’s own life.

One hears the victim’s curse,

But discloses nothing.”

Do not pamper a slave or servant from childhood, because there will not be a good ending. The angry hot head stirs up strife and causes a lot of transgressions. Pride will bring humiliation, while the humble will be honored. If you are involved with a thief, you must hate your own life. If you hear a victim cry and do nothing, you are as bad as the thief.