Friday of the Third Week of Lent – 25 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – The Annunciation – Isaias 7:10-15, Luke 1:26-38
“Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” – Luke 1:28,42
“And Mary said,
‘Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord.
May it be to me according to your word.’”
“SO THE LORD NOW manifestly came to His own. Born by His own created order that He Himself bears, He by His obedience on the tree, renewed and reversed what was done by disobedience, in connection with a tree.
THE POWER of that seduction, by which the virgin Eve, already betrothed to a man, had been wickedly seduced, was broken when the Angel in truth brought good tidings to the Virgin Mary, who already, by her betrothal belonged to a man. For as Eve was seduced by the word of an Angel to flee from God, having rebelled against His Word, so Mary by the word of an Angel, received the glad tidings that she would bear God, by obeying His Word.
THE FORMER WAS SEDUCED to disobey God and so fell but the latter, was persuaded to obey God, so that the Virgin Mary might become the advocate of Eve.
AS THE HUMAN RACE was subjected to death through the act of a virgin, so was it saved by a virgin, was precisely balanced by the obedience of Another. Then indeed, the sin of the first formed man was amended by the chastisement of the First Begotten, the wisdom of the serpent was conquered by the simplicity of the dove and the chains were broken, by which we were in bondage to death.” – St Irenaeus (130-202) Bishop of Lyons, Martyr, Father of the Church (Against Heresies, 5)