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And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

1:28 highly favoured. Mary was “highly favored” and “blessed among women,” because she had been given the privilege of fulfilling the ancient promise made by God to Mother Eve (Genesis 3:15), the promise of choosing a woman who would bear the promised Seed who would come to crush the old Serpent and all his evil plans. However, this blessing, given to a godly young virgin in Israel, in no way warrants us to worship her as the “Mother of God,” on essentially the same level as God Himself. Unfortunately, in later times many people unknowingly tended to replace the ancient pagan worship of the “goddess” (known as Ishtar, Astarte, Venus, etc., in various languages) with “Mariolatry.”

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