“The Angel Gabriel From Heaven Came.”

Do you ever sit and think about that fact that not too many years ago shame was an important part of a social and grounded life.  There was a healthy thing about shame because it kept the boundaries that an ordered society had to have to be, well, ordered.  There was a universal understanding of something that we have forgotten and that is the “natural knowledge of God” or “natural Law”.  This meant that there were certain things that it was not possible to know were not wrong or shameful.  Adam and Eve immediately upon eating the fruit knew shame and they hid themselves.  Cain knew shame when he killed his brother.  Folks were often kept from stealing because of the thought of the shame that it would bring to their families.  Children were kept in line in school be the shame of having ag teacher tell their parents what a jerk they were and on and on it went.  Bringing shame upon a family was a horrible contemplation.

When I was growing up I remember two of my female classmates simply disappearing in the middle of a school year and coming back the next.  If found out later that they were pregnant and sent to live with other relatives until the babies were born.  So an interesting thing has happened over the years and that is that people get tired of shame.  Shame comes from the breaking of a law of God and so God becomes the bully, the great bully that has to be put in his place.  The blog I had on “Mary Did You Know?” came about because people were saying that this whole notion of a virgin birth implies rape by a deity and child abuse and a patriarchal attitude that has to do with shaming.  We moved from shame being a rather good thing for ordered life together, to a bad thing with the people who shame others for doing bad things become the bad guys.  If you think about it we have reached a point where the folks that said that “shaming” was shameful, have now done a 180 and believe that the way to deal with folks that believe for instance that, marriage is between and man and a women should be “shamed” publicly.  I guess turn about is fair play in a world that is going insane.

The Angel Gabriel came to both Mary and Joseph to announce their part in the birth of Jesus.  Joseph had already determined that he did not want to publicly expose Mary to shame and that he would sent her away was comforted and “bucked up” by Gabriel.  Interestingly she gave birth to a son who would one day “despise the shame” of the Cross and would be put to public disgrace.  That act of humiliation would put to disgrace the principalities and powers that want to destroy us.  God’s grace removes our disgrace.

My cover of “The Angel Gabriel From Heaven Came”