The Word Was Made Man
in the Fullness of Time

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Annunciation - by MURILLO, Bartolomé Esteban - from Museo del Prado, Madrid

Mary is not depicted in the Thralls-of Mystical Rapture, nor in those of Devotion. Murillo's Mary is a very Young Woman, with an almost Childlike Face, who is Kneeling-at her Prie-Dieu, her Eyes cast Pensively-downwards. She has Set-aside her Basket-of Handiwork and seems to have been Disturbed-by an Angel, in the Midst-of her Prayers. Mary's Purity is Symbolized-by the White Lilies, and her Prior Knowledge-of the Messiah, is Symbolized-by the open Holy Book at the Right, containing the Words-of the Inspired Writers-of Genesis and Isaiah, of which she had Intimate prior-Knowledge. Were it not for the Presence-of his Wings, even the Angel would seem to be a very Worldly Creature. With one hand, he Points-towards the Dove-of the Holy Spirit, which Floats-above their Heads, in a Celestial Vision. With the other hand, he makes a Gesture-of Persuasion: he seems to be Explaining the Purpose-of his Mission, quite Vigorously-to Mary. Mary's Innocence, underlined-by the Lily as a Symbol-of Purity, is of such Intensity, that the Spectator Senses her Quiet Reservation, the Excited Anticipation-of the Prophesied Miracle, and her Astonishment-at the Experience.

 

Ubi Venit plenitudo temporis misit Deus Filium suum.

"When the Fullness of Time was Come, God sent His Son"

Galatians 4:4

 

The Word Was Made Man
 in the Fullness of Time

by Saint Alphonsus Liguori

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Consider that God allowed Four Thousand Years to-Pass, after the Transgression-of Adam, before He sent His Son upon Earth, to Redeem the World. And in the Mean-time, oh, what Fatal Darkness Reigned-upon the Earth! The True God was not 'Known' or 'Adored', except in One (1) Small Corner-of the World. Idolatry Reigned everywhere; so that Devils and Beasts and Stones, were Adored-as Gods.

 

Jesus, Incarnate-in the Womb-of Mary,
through the Power-of the Holy Spirit

Mary's Fiat:
"Be it Done-unto me, According-to thy Word"

But let us Admire-in this, the Divine Wisdom: He 'Deferred' the Coming-of the Redeemer, in-order-to Render His Advent, more-Welcome to-Man, in order that the Malice of Sin might be better-Known, as-well-as the Necessity-of a Remedy, and the Grace of the Savior. If Jesus Christ, had Come-into the World, Immediately-after the Fall-of Adam, the Greatness-of this Favor, would have been but Slightly Appreciated. Let us therefore 'Thank' the Goodness-of-God, for having Sent 'us' into the World, after the Great Work-of Redemption was 'Accomplished'. Behold, the Happy Time is 'Come', which was 'Called' the Fullness of Time:

When the Fullness of Time was Come, God sent His Son, -
that He might Redeem them, that were Under the Law
.

It is called Fullness, on-account-of the Fullness-of Grace which the Son-of-God came to Communicate-to Men, by the Redemption-of the World. Behold the Angel, who is sent as 'Ambassador' into the Town-of Nazareth, to-announce-to the Virgin Mary, the Coming-of the Word, Who Desires-to become Incarnate, in her Womb. The Angel Salutes her, Calls her Full of Grace and Blessed among Women. The Humble Virgin, Chosen-to be the Mother-of the Son-of-God, is Troubled-at these Praises, on-account-of her Great Humility: but the Angel Encourages her, and tells her that she has found Grace-with-God; that is to say, that Grace which brought Peace between God and Man, and the Reparation-of the Ruin, Caused-by Sin. He then tells her that she must give her Son the Name-of Savior: Thou shalt call His Name Jesus (Luke 1:31); ----- and that This, her Son, is the very Son-of-God, Who is to Redeem the World, and thus to Reign-over the Hearts-of Men. Behold, at last Mary Consents-to be the Mother-of such a Son. And the Eternal Word takes- Flesh and becomes-Man. And the Word was made-Flesh: "Et Verum caro factum est".

Let us Thank this Son, and let us also Thank His Mother, who, in Consenting-to be the Mother-of such a Son, Consented-also to be the Mother-of our Salvation, and Mother also of Sorrows, accepting at that Time, the Deep Abyss-of Sorrows that it would Cost her, to be the Mother of a Son, Who was to Come-into the World, to Suffer and Die, for Man.

 

- End of Liguori Sermon -

 

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"O my God, make me a Saint"
Saint Alphonsus Mary Liguori

 

Affections and Prayers

O Divine Word, become Man for me. Though I Behold Thee thus Humbled, and become a little Infant in the Womb-of Mary, yet I Confess and Acknowledge Thee for my Lord and King, a King-of Love.

My Dearest Savior, since Thou hast Come-down upon Earth, and Clothed Thyself with our Miserable Flesh, in-order-to Reign-over our Hearts, I Beseech Thee, Come and Establish Thy Reign in my Heart also, which was once, alas, Ruled-over by Thine Enemies, but is now, I Hope, Thine, as I Desire that it may be always Thine, and that from this day-forth, Thou mayest be its only Lord: Rule Thou in the midst-of Thine Enemies. [Psalm 110:2]

Other Kings, Reign-by the Strength-of Arms, but Thou comest-to Reign-by the Power-of Love; and therefore, Thou dost not come-with Regal Pomp, nor Clothed-in Purple and Gold, nor Adorned-with Scepter and Crown, nor Surrounded-by Armies-of Soldiers. Thou comest-into the World, to be Born-in a Stable, ----- Poor, Forsaken, Placed-in a Manger on a little Straw, because thus Thou wouldst Begin-to Reign-in our Hearts.

Ah, my Infant King, how could I so-often Rebel-against Thee, and Live so-long Thy Enemy, Deprived-of Thy Grace, when, to-Oblige me to Love Thee, Thou hast put-off Thy Divine Majesty, and hast Humbled Thyself, even-to appearing, First, as a Babe-in a Cave; then as a Servant-in a Shop; then as a Criminal-on a Cross?

Oh, Happy me, if, now that I have been Freed [as I Hope] from the Slavery-of Satan, I allow myself Forever, to be Governed-by Thee, and by Thy Love! O Jesus, my King, Who art so-Amiable and so-Loving to our Souls, take Possession, I Pray Thee, of mine: I give it entirely-to Thee; accept it, that it may serve-Thee Forever, but serve-Thee only for Love.

Thy Majesty, Deserves-to be Feared, but Thy Goodness still-more, Deserves-to be Loved. Thou art my King, and shalt be always the only Object-of my Love; and the only Fear I shall have, will be the Fear-of Displeasing Thee. This is what I Hope. Do Thou Help me with Thy Grace. O Mary, our Dear Lady! It is for thee, to Obtain-for me, that I may be Faithful-to this Beloved, King-of my Soul.