“John the Baptist”
Luke 1:5-25, 57-80
– Lisa Love, Preschool Associate
How do we tell important news? Who gets to be the one to announce something important? God had chosen someone to announce the most important of news: our King was coming!
Zechariah and Elizabeth seemed unlikely parents for this special messenger, mainly because they were OLD! But, isn’t that how God works? He chooses the most unlikely of people to do His work so it can only be attributed to Him. Zechariah and Elizabeth had lived without children many years and had probably given up on having any. God waited all this time to send them a child; God’s timing is always perfect.
A devout man, Zechariah went to the temple to give an offering to God and had an unforgettable encounter. The angel Gabriel proclaimed to a startled Zechariah that God had heard his prayers, “Your wife will have a son, and you are to call him John. He will be a joy and a delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord.” John was to tell the people to ready themselves for the coming of the Lord. Because of their ages, Zechariah questioned this; he wasn’t quite sure this would happen. Gabriel told Zechariah he would not speak during Elizabeth’s pregnancy because he did not trust Gabriel’s words. Zechariah remained silent until his son John was born, just as the angel said.
Can you imagine being Zechariah and not being able to tell about your angel encounter? You wouldn’t be able to share the news of your wife’s pregnancy or that you would have a special son named John? What if you knew the King, Lord Jesus, was coming, but you couldn’t share that with anyone? BUT, we don’t have to be silent; we should not be silent. We should share the good news: that Jesus has come to save us, to make a way for us, to transform our lives with His truth. So, this Christmas, share the good news of Jesus, the one who makes us new!
1. Read Luke 1:5-25. What kind of man was Zechariah? What was Zechariah’s response to the angel’s proclamation? What was the result?
2. Read Luke 1:57-66. What made Zechariah speak again? Why did Zechariah choose the name John? What did Zechariah say when he could speak?
3. Read Matthew 28:18-20. What are the two truths Jesus proclaims alongside His command? How do these truths equip us to complete the command?
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