Luke 1:29
And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
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(29) she was troubled at his saying.—The same word is used as had been used of Zacharias. With Mary, as with him, the first feeling was one of natural terror. Who was the strange visitor, and what did the strange greeting mean?

Luke 1:29-30. When she saw him she was troubled Διεταραχθη, disturbed or perplexed; at his saying — A salutation so unusual from a being of a superior order (for such his form, which was more than human, bespoke him to be) put Mary into a great perturbation of spirit; and no wonder; for if Zacharias, a venerable and aged minister of God, and one accustomed to have intercourse with heaven, was amazed at the appearance of an angel, how much more might a young virgin be so, her sex peculiarly subjecting her to the passion of fear. And she cast in her mind Δειλογιζετο, she reasoned with herself; what manner of salutation this should be — What should be its intention, and from what original it could come. It is not improbable but she suspected that it might possibly proceed from the artifice of some evil spirit, to inspire her with sentiments of vanity and pride. And the angel — Speaking with a gentle and smooth accent, in order to remove her doubts, and inspire her with confidence and courage; said, Fear not, Mary — Thus preparing her for the reception of his message; for all passions, but particularly that of fear, disquiets the heart, and makes it unfit to receive messages from God. For thou hast found favour with God — And I have no other design but to assure thee of it. Observe, reader, those that have found favour with God ought not to give way to disquieting, distrustful fears. Does God favour thee? then fear not, though the world frown upon thee. Is he for thee? then it signifies little who is against thee.

1:26-38 We have here an account of the mother of our Lord; though we are not to pray to her, yet we ought to praise God for her. Christ must be born miraculously. The angel's address means only, Hail, thou that art the especially chosen and favoured of the Most High, to attain the honour Jewish mothers have so long desired. This wondrous salutation and appearance troubled Mary. The angel then assured her that she had found favour with God, and would become the mother of a son whose name she should call Jesus, the Son of the Highest, one in a nature and perfection with the Lord God. JESUS! the name that refreshes the fainting spirits of humbled sinners; sweet to speak and sweet to hear, Jesus, a Saviour! We know not his riches and our own poverty, therefore we run not to him; we perceive not that we are lost and perishing, therefore a Saviour is a word of little relish. Were we convinced of the huge mass of guilt that lies upon us, and the wrath that hangs over us for it, ready to fall upon us, it would be our continual thought, Is the Saviour mine? And that we might find him so, we should trample on all that hinders our way to him. Mary's reply to the angel was the language of faith and humble admiration, and she asked no sign for the confirming her faith. Without controversy, great was the mystery of godliness, God manifest in the flesh, 1Ti 3:16. Christ's human nature must be produced so, as it was fit that should be which was to be taken into union with the Divine nature. And we must, as Mary here, guide our desires by the word of God. In all conflicts, let us remember that with God nothing is impossible; and as we read and hear his promises, let us turn them into prayers, Behold the willing servant of the Lord; let it be unto me according to thy word.Troubled at his saying - Disturbed or perplexed at what he said. It was so unexpected, so sudden, so extraordinary, and was so high an honor, that she was filled with anxious thoughts, and did not know what to make of it.

Cast in her mind - Thought, or revolved in her mind.

What manner of salutation - What this salutation could mean.

28. highly favoured—a word only once used elsewhere (Eph 1:6, "made accepted"): compare Lu 1:30, "Thou hast found favour with God." The mistake of the Vulgate's rendering, "full of grace," has been taken abundant advantage of by the Romish Church. As the mother of our Lord, she was the most "blessed among women" in external distinction; but let them listen to the Lord's own words. "Nay, rather blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it." (See on [1537]Lu 11:27). It seemeth that she did not only hear a voice, and saw an ordinary appearance, but the appearance of the angel was attended with some manifestation of the glory of God, which affected her, and made her wonder what the meaning of this should be, that God should send an angel to her, and with such a kind of salutation.

And when she saw him,.... The Persic version renders it, "when Mary saw the angel"; which expresses the true sense of the words, The Vulgate Latin reads, "when she heard"; i.e. the salutation:

she was troubled at his saying; at his speaking to her; she was surprised at the sight of him, and more at what he said to her,

and cast in her mind, or thought and reasoned within herself,

what manner of salutation this should be; for it was not usual with the Jews for a man to use any salutation to a woman; with them it was not lawful to be done in any shape or form; not by a messenger, nor even by her own husband (u); so that Mary might well be thrown into a concern what should be the meaning of this; and especially, that she should be addressed in such language, and saluted as a peculiar favourite of God, and blessed among women,

(u) T. Bab. Kiddushin, fol. 70. 1, 2. Maimon. Hilch. Issure Biah, c. 21.

And when she saw him, she was {b} troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.

(b) Moved at the strangeness of the matter.

Luke 1:29. διεταράχθη: assuming that ιδοῦσα (T.R.) is no part of the true text, Godet thinks that Mary saw nothing, and that it was only the word of the angel that disturbed her. It is certainly the latter that is specified as the cause of trouble. The salutation troubled her because she felt that it meant something important, the precise nature of which (ποταπὸς) did not appear. And yet on the principle that in supernatural experiences the subjective and the objective correspond, she must have had a guess.

29. And when she saw him, she was troubled] Rather, But she was greatly troubled.

Luke 1:29. Διεταράχθη, she was troubled) Her being troubled arose from the apparition itself (ἡ δὲ ἰδοῦσα, when she saw him). Therefore she does not seem to have been previously accustomed to apparitions. [All things, in the case of the blessed Virgin, both what was foretold to herself, and what ensued subsequently, befel her without her expecting them. But if her conception, as the tradition of several members of the Roman Church represents, had been immaculate, she could have hardly accounted herself, however superlatively modest, in such an ordinary position (so entirely undistinguished from ordinary men and women).—V. g.]—ποταπὸδ εἴη, of what kind may be) The formulæ themselves, which had been addressed to her, hail, and, the Lord with thee, were ordinary salutations; but from the peculiar and extraordinary titles which the angel added, Mary understood that the formulæ, especially as being conjoined with these titles, were employed with an extraordinary [distinguishing] and new force. In fact, in all the recorded apparitions of angels, there is no other instance occurs of such a salutation. Mary not only wondered, but also cast in her mind, of what kind might be, what was the meaning, and what the drift of this salutation.

Verse 29. - She was troubled; more accurately, she was greatly troubled. Different to Zacharias, who evidently doubted in the mission of the angel, and who required some sign before he could believe, Mary simply wondered at the strangeness of what was about to happen. Her terror at the sudden appearance of the angel, who probably appearedto her as a young man clad in garments of a strange dazzling whiteness, is most natural. Luke 1:29
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