Zechariah’s Song has a second part. Zechariah started in yesterday’s scripture, Luke 1:68-75, with praise to God for who He is and what He has done then continued in Luke 1:76-79 prophesying about his little son they had just circumcised.
And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; (prophet of God)
for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, (be a preparer)
to give his people the knowledge of salvation (preach the need for repentance)
through the forgiveness of their sins,
because of the tender mercy of our God, (why Jesus came- to show God’s mercy)
by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven
to shine on those living in darkness (bring light into dark world)
and in the shadow of death, (bring life not death)
to guide our feet into the path of peace.” (be our guide and bring peace)
Zechariah’s Song reveals the place his John would have in preparing the way for Messiah, Jesus. Isaiah had also foretold the message of one to come who we know to be Zechariah’s John. Isaiah 40:3-5 was written centuries before John’s birth. “A voice of one calling: (a pro-claimer of coming Messiah)
“In the wilderness prepare (a wilderness dweller)
the way for the Lord;
make straight in the desert (preparing hearts with repentance)
a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be raised up,
every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
the rugged places a plain.
And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, (Jesus will reveal God’s glory)
and all people will see it together.” (everyone will see Jesus)
This prophesy was made famous as sung in Handel’s Messiah describing the one who was to come and prepare the way for the Lord Jesus’ ministry. He was to proclaim that Jesus was coming and the need to prepare their hearts by repentance and openness towards God’s coming revelation. The last line of Luke 1:80 tells us “And the child grew and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the wilderness until he appeared publicly to Israel.” John was literally one from the wilderness calling the Jews to repent and be ready for Messiah to come.
What part of John’s character does Jesus want us to emulate? John was a herald in the ancient world that proclaimed the arrival of a coming king. Do you take opportunities to testify about Jesus and why He came? Christmas season is a perfect time to proclaim His coming. Our message to the world is the same as John’s -repent, turn to Jesus and see the glory of God revealed. Jesus saves and we need to proclaim it.
Be a voice today. Psalm 107:2 “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,
whom he has redeemed from trouble”
Be bold and speak out about Jesus!