Mary's song isn’t a docile picture of obedience singing about how great it is to be pregnant. Mary is singing of nothing less than complete overturning of the social and economic order.
There’s a reason why the Magnificat is said to have terrified the Russian Czars. Because, the message is that if you find yourself rich and powerful then … watch out! This young little Jewish girl is not singing about a whole lot of good news for you.
What Mary sings of is not an endless cycle of retribution, but a total dismantling of the entire system. The child she bears is not coming to make the oppressed the oppressors. He is coming to disrupt the whole notion of oppression itself. This divinely vulnerable love is the only way out of our cycle of power and oppression.
I’m certain that the reality of empire and oppression and poverty and the abject powerlessness of her very self in her very context was not lost on the mother of our Lord. Quite the opposite. I think she knew. She knew that because of her lowliness and poverty and insignificance – because of this and not in spite of this that God was and is doing an entirely new thing.
Never had the poor been so exalted than for God to slip into their skin insistently blessing the whole world in a radical way. She knew you simply can’t speak of such things. They have to be sung.
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