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Daily Worship


December 10 | Luke 1:67-79





Zechariah's Song

by Elaine Pierce

John the Baptist's father, Zechariah, had been unable to speak ever since he questioned the angel's news that he and Elizabeth would have a baby in their old age. Eight days after the baby's birth, at the time for him to be circumcised, Zechariah and Elizabeth surprised everyone - all their family and friends - by declaring that their son's name would be John. It was customary to name the firstborn son after his father. Zechariah's speech was immediately restored, and his first words are what we are reading today. They commonly referred to these verses as 'Zechariah's Song.' Next week we read Mary's Song, the words of praise she spoke after the angel revealed she would be the mother of the Christ child.

Zechariah's Song is filled with praise to God, for what he has done in the past for the people of Israel (vs. 68-75) and what he will do in the future through his son (vs. 76-79). God has rescued the people from their enemies. He has shown them mercy. He has brought salvation through King David.

And what will John the Baptist do? He will prepare the way for Christ. How will he do that? He will remind people of their need for forgiveness "because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace." (v. 78-79)

And we know John did just that. He prepared the way, and he paid the price with his life. Thinking about how John died as we prepare for Jesus' birth is not something I do every Advent season, but it is a reminder that God works in ways that we often don't understand. John's father reminds us that God's mercies are tender, and the final result for those who follow Jesus will be eternal life. Yes, this world may not bring peace, but the path of true peace transcends the time we are allotted on this earth. What joy we will have when we greet those who have gone before us, and have all eternity to sing God's praises!

Yes, John prepared the way. As we continue in this Advent season of watching and waiting for the Savior's birth, take time to read Zechariah's words and offer praise to the God of the universe, who came to earth as a baby, who loves us more than we can ever fully comprehend.


Lord, thank you for these words of comfort, of encouragement, and of mercy. Help me this week in the midst of the busyness of buying presents, decorating, and baking, that you would remind me of your tender mercies. Help me to shine a light for those in darkness and to guide my feet to the path of peace. Amen.

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