Though Scripture does not indicate that Mary ever said the words, “I consent,” we can assume that she did consent to God’s plan that she become the mother of Jesus because of how she reacted to the news.
After the angel greeted Mary, he explained exactly what would happen: “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35).
Then we see Mary’s reaction and her acknowledgement that she accepts these things: “‘I am the Lord’s servant,’ Mary answered. ‘May your word to me be fulfilled’” (Luke 1:38). These are words of humility and acceptance.
Every indication in Scripture is that Mary welcomed God’s plan and treasured her God-given task. In addition to her reaction to the angel’s news, we also have Mary’s song or poem of praise to God for who He is and what He will do through Jesus Christ:
“My soul glorifies the Lord
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has been mindful
of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name.
His mercy extends to those who fear him,
from generation to generation.
He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
to Abraham and his descendants forever,
just as he promised our ancestors” (Luke 1:46–55).
Mary’s praise and ready acceptance of God’s plan can be contrasted with Zechariah’s disbelief and questioning heart about the angel’s news to him. Zechariah heard the news that his wife, Elizabeth, would bear a son who would be the forerunner of the Messiah. Upon hearing the angel’s announcement, Zechariah asked, “How can I be sure of this?” (Luke 1:18). He did not immediately believe, and, for his doubting, he was made mute until his son, John, was born.
Scripture shows us that, when God asks something specific of someone, He will be persistent in His message to them. Sometimes, people move straight into His calling, like Mary, Isaiah (Isaiah 6:8), Samuel (1 Samuel 3:10), and Zacchaeus (Luke 19:5–6). And sometimes, they don’t, like Moses (Exodus 3:11), Jonah (Jonah 1:1–3), and King Saul (1 Samuel 10:20–22).
The important thing is that, because God is all-powerful and all-knowing, His purposes can never be thwarted. Psalm 33:11 tells us, “But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.”
King Saul was chosen as the first king of Israel and was even filled with the Holy Spirit. Yet, he eventually disobeyed God’s direct order, and God found someone else whose heart would stay true to Him.
Moses tried to come up with every excuse in the book to get out of helping free the Israelites from Egypt. God didn’t let Moses off the hook. Instead, He provided Moses with the staff, miracles, and his brother Aaron. Whom God calls, He equips.
Mary fully embraced her calling as the mother of Jesus. Her song of praise and her life will be remembered with joy for all eternity. Mary’s song is not about how she was qualified or how she agreed to God’s plans; the theme of her song was the mercy, goodness, and power of God. In His attributes Mary was assured that His long-awaited promises would be fulfilled.