Day 3 – Advent Devotional

Some of the biggest wonder-producing moments come when we are shocked out of our expectations.

Read Luke 1:5-7.

In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old.

In this passage, we meet Zechariah and Elizabeth. These two people are extremely important to the Christmas story and in Jesus’ overall ministry. But today, let’s focus on wheat we know about them from these verses. In verse 5, we discover that Zechariah was a priest. This means that he would have represented his people before God in the Temple. He would have led them in worship and in making sacrifices and offering. We know he was married to Elizabeth. In verse 6, we see that Elizabeth and Zechariah were godly people. They were meticulous in following God and His ways. But in verse 7, we learn something really sad.

In verse 7, we see that they had no child. When Luke’s original audience read this verse after reading verses 5-6, they would have been caught off guard. Why? Because in this period, if you weren’t able to have children, it was thought that God was judging you because of some sin in your life. Yikes!

Spoiler alert: Zechariah and Elizabeth would miraculously become pregnant with a child. That child would be the man we know as John the Baptist (more on that later). What we see from this story is God working in ways that defy our expectations. This childless couple? They would miraculously become the parents of a crucial partner in Jesus’ ministry. But not yet. God wasn’t quite ready for them to be blown away by His amazing plan for them. In the meantime, they were left to deal with unmet dreams and frustrated expectations. And yet, they did so faithfully. There is much for us to learn from them, isn’t there?

Think About This:

What is something you wanted badly that God didn’t choose to provide for you?

Zechariah and Elizabeth stayed faithful even though God had not yet granted their desires. What can you learn from their examples?

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