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December 21, 2018

Please use the comment section on this page to share insights from today’s reading OR your own personal Bible reading.

Reading along with us in Luke for five days? Here’s today’s reading:

Luke 1 (ESV)

Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years....Continue Reading

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This Post Has 6 Comments
  1. and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

  2. It’s interesting to me that both Zechariah and Mary questioned Gabriel and how his pronouncement would be possible. Yet only Zechariah was punished for questioning.

    1. Ken, that is a good observation. I suspect that God takes into account the biblical background of each person.
      Zechariah, as a Levitical priest, is knowledgeable of the holy scriptures. He would know the story of Abraham and Sarah very well. He knows that they were able to conceive and bear Issac at an old age.
      Mary, however, is a very young virgin who does know of the scriptures but is most likely not as educated like Zechariah. Also, while there is historical evidence of old people having children there has never been a virgin conceiving and giving birth. Mary’s question is understandable.
      Also, we do not know her heart in asking the question. but we know that God looks at the heart and understands it (Jer 17:9-10 ESV).
      Also look at her response when the angel Gabriel explains how this will be.
      Luke 1:35-37 (ESV)
      35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.”
      Luke 1:38 (ESV)
      And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
      Her response is submission to the will of God.

  3. Oops, I meant to be in Mathew and not Luke for a few days as we celebrate Christmas. I had forgotten we have already read through Luke before in our readings. So whether we continue in Luke or go to Mathew, it will only be a short stint to reflect on Christ’s coming. Then on December 27th we will turn to the book of Job.

  4. Still struck by the miraculous way God worked to bring John the Baptist and Jesus into this world, and how He set the scene to let the people of Israel know He was doing something special. And Ken, there is a difference between Zechariah and Mary’s response. His question came from doubt. “How can I be sure of this?” is how the NIV puts vs.18. Where Mary’s question doesn’t question the validity of what Gabriel is saying but is asking about the logistics. “How will this be?” is what she asks. In other words, I believe what you are saying, but how will it be accomplished, just in case there is something she was supposed to do about it. After all, God has never done this before and so all she could think of is the natural way where babies come from….so she might think, do I have to marry Joseph sooner, am I supposed to meet someone else….in other words How will this be as opposed to how can I be sure of this. And it is interesting that Zechariah’s question is answered. How can you be sure, you will be silent until your son is born. Which later makes what he does say more significant.

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