It’s All About Him

Today’s Scripture: Luke 1:57-80; SOAP – Luke 1:68-71

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
because he has come to help and has redeemed his people.
69 For he has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David,
70 as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from long ago,
71 that we should be saved from our enemies,
and from the hand of all who hate us.

Luke 1:68-71 NET

The Rest of the Story …

I was never a big radio listener but on occasion I would find myself caught up in a program by Paul Harvey, called “The Rest of the Story“. The stories would catch my attention but even if I wasn’t interested in the particular story of the day I would continue listening to the end just to hear him say, the now renown statement, “And now you know…the rest of the story.

This statement and the sound of his voice came flooding back to my mind today as I was reading the rest of Zechariah’s story. If you remember on day one of our study we read how the angel appeared to Zechariah in the Temple and announced that Elizabeth, Zechariah’s wife, would become pregnant and give birth to a son. We also read that Zechariah had been struck mute because he didn’t believe what the angel had told him. Day two brought the news that, just as the angel had said, Elizabeth did become pregnant; and today’s passage reveals that the child was indeed a son. When the people came to circumcise the child, in obedience to the angelic instructions Elizabeth gave him the name John, instead of the customary name of his father. When the people questioned this, Zechariah, still unable to speak, confirmed the name that Elizabeth had spoken, by writing the name John for all to see. Miraculously, upon writing the name his speech returned – and all the people were amazed and “wondered what this child will be.” Scripture says, “Then, Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied.”

He Turned All of His Words Into Praise

Zechariah could have used his words to describe what had happened in the Temple that day with the angel, he could have described what it was like to have not been able to talk, he could have done some new-dad baby-bragging, which no doubt he did at some point. However, in this moment, with this blessing he turned all of His words into praise of the Lord God of Israel and prophesying about the Messiah – “The Horn of Salvation”, whom His child, John, would make known to the world. Zechariah used his voice to make it known that God had done this to show mercy to their people and to remember His holy covenant made to Abraham. He reminded the people that because God was rescuing them from their enemies they could now and forever more serve God without fear, in holiness and righteousness. Even when He turned tenderhearted attention to his infant child before him, his blessing continued to focus on God and Jesus, the Most High – the Lord who was coming to save His people from their sins, saying:

And you [John], will be called the prophet of the Most High For you will go before the Lord to prepare His ways, to give His people knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins. Because of our God’s tender mercy the dawn will break upon us from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. And [John] kept growing and becoming strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day [Jesus] was revealed to Israel.

Luke 1:76-80

And now you know…the rest of the story.

Paul Harvey
My Response to God’s Word

Father, thank You for the story of John, who made Jesus known to the world, as God called him to do. But I also thank you for Zechariah and Elizabeth, who You used to fulfill the prophecy from Isaiah 40:3 of “one who cries out, In the wilderness clear a way for the Lord” -. From the barren womb of Elizabeth, who was in her old age, you brought forth the messenger of our Lord. You silenced the tongue of Zechariah and then loosened it to make known the great things You were doing. You taught Zechariah, who doubted, to trust You in all things by showing him – and all of us through him – that “nothing is impossible with You”. Help me, like Zechariah, Elizabeth, and Mary – to use my words to praise You – to make known Your greatness. Help me to trust and not doubt, and to obey – even when i don’t understand what You are doing. Help me to live and talk in such a way that others see and hear what You have done so that others will experience and/or see Your mercy and rejoice with me- and may “the rest of my story” be a beautiful legacy of faith – to the glory of Your good and gracious name! Amen, In Jesus’ Name!

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