Advent: Preparing for Jesus – Zechariah’s Prayer (Part 1)
December 12, 2019
His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied: “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and redeemed them. He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us—to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, the oath he swore to our father Abraham: to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.”
Zechariah had not been able to speak for nine months! With the birth of his son, John, his tongue is set free and he sings a song of praise. The first part of his song celebrates the coming of Jesus, the promised Messiah. The second part of his song celebrates the role his son would play in preparing the way for Jesus. Let’s consider the first part of Zechariah’s song today.
God has come! The word translated “has come” means “to visit.” In Jesus, God came to earth to visit us.
God came to redeem. The word, “redeem” means “to buy back; to rescue.” An example of “redemption” in the Old Testament was when God rescued Israel from slavery in Egypt and set them free. Zechariah knew that God was visiting man in order to rescue mankind from sin and set us free. In Jesus, God provided His great mercy to man.
God came to rescue. God promised to send a deliverer “as he said through his holy prophets of long ago.” In Jesus, this promise was fulfilled. Jesus came to rescue us from the world, from our sin, from the devil, and from death.
God came to enable service. Jesus provided the way for man to serve God without fear and in holiness and righteousness.
Lord Jesus, thank You for taking on flesh and coming to the earth to live among us. Thank You for redeeming us, rescuing us, and allowing us to serve You. In Your name. Amen.
For parents: Good theology starts at home. Teach your children the theological truths of redemption, salvation, holiness, and righteousness found in these passages. Share with us the way you explain these truths in an age-appropriate way. Are there any helpful resources that you use? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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