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What’s the Big Deal About ‘Mary, Did You Know’?

mary did you know
Antonello da Messina, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Who would have thought that one Christmas carol could get people so riled up? Yet many seem unable to stop debating whether “Mary, Did You Know?” is theologically accurate or even a good song. 

“It’s just that time of year where half the population gets mad that ‘Mary Did You Know?’ is mansplaining and the other half rolls their eyes and insists its [sic] a poetic rhetorical question,” said Twitter user LydenTree63.

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‘Mary, Did You Know?’ 

The text of “Mary, Did You Know?” was written in 1984 by singer and songwriter Mark Lowry. Musician Buddy Greene wrote the music to the song in 1991 while he and Lowry were touring with the Gaither Vocal Band. Below are the full lyrics:

Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy
Has come to make you new;
This Child that you delivered Will soon deliver you? 

Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would calm a storm with His hand?
Did you know that your baby boy
Has walked where angels trod,
And when you kiss your little baby
You’ve kissed the face of God?
Mary, did you know? 

The blind will see, the deaf will hear,
The dead will live again,
The lame will leap, the dumb will speak
The praises of the Lamb! 

Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Is Lord all creation?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Will one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy
Was Heaven’s perfect Lamb,
And the sleeping Child you’re holding
Is the great, the Great I AM?
Oh, Mary, Mary, did you know?

‘Mary, Did You Know?’—Mansplaining or Rhetorical Device?

Critics of “Mary, Did You Know” accuse it of “mansplaining” and being generally condescending, particularly given the truths Mary proclaims about God in the Magnificat

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Jessica is a content editor for ChurchLeaders.com and the producer of The Stetzer ChurchLeaders Podcast. She has always had a passion for the written word and has been writing professionally for the past five years. When Jessica isn't writing, she enjoys West Coast Swing dancing, reading, and spending time with her friends and family.