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Grace, Peace & God’s Promises
December 9, 2011 faith

Zacharias Writes Down the Name of his SonLast week we talked about how Zachariah doubted God’ ability to give him a son. Because of this he was unable to speak until the day of the circumcision of his son. He got his voice back after he had written on a tablet “His name is to be John”. Oh, how Zachariah praised the Lord!

“Bless the Lord God of Israel
   because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house, 

just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.

He has brought salvation from our enemies

   and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
   and remembered his holy covenant,
   the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
      from the power of our enemies
   so that we could serve him without fear,
   in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
         for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,

   for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved

   through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
   the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
   to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
   and in the shadow of death,
      to guide us on the path of peace.
(Luke 1: 68-79, CEB, emphasis added)

I bet Zachariah did a lot of thinking, praying, and listening during the pregnancy of Elizabeth. Otherwise his prophecy could not have been this clear and magnificent. Zachariah had learned his lesson and proudly declared:

1) God’s promises will always come true on God’s time. Not on our time, or our way but on God’s time and God’s way.

2) God’s way is the way of salvation:

God is raising up
a mighty savior
who has brought salvation,
shown the mercy,
and granted that we would be rescued.

In the Holy Spirit Zachariah also knew that his son John will be the prophet of the Most High, clearing the way for Jesus. The prophecy ends with a promise of a new dawn for the people sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death. Jesus, the prince of peace, will come to us.

3) Jesus will personally show us the way down the path of peace. We can walk with him and experience peace beyond understanding. We can experience grace upon grace. Just because God sent his only Son, Jesus Christ, into the world.

This is how John tells us about Jesus:

From his fullness we have all received grace upon grace;
 as the Law was given through Moses,
   so grace and truth came into being through Jesus Christ.
No one has ever seen God.
   God the only Son,
      who is at the Father’s side,
      has made God known.
(John 1:16-18, CEB)

These three prophetic declarations of Zachariah are still valid  today:
1) God’s promises will come true on God’s time. Because God’s deep love and compassion for us, he will fulfill all his promises. We are waiting for Jesus to come back. And he will. On God’s time. Come, Lord Jesus!
2) God’s way is salvation. God wants to rescue us from darkness. He made this possible by sending his own son to the world. So we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus. And we live in grace. It’s all grace.
3) God’s path is peace. God fights peacefully by enlarging his goodness within us. He calls us to bear his light in this world. So everyone could know the love of God, receive the grace of Christ, and live in the presence of the Holy Spirit.

 

Gracious God,
We praise you!
Your salvation plan
is beyond comprehension.
But we thank you
for rescuing us from darkness.
Grant us patience to wait for your timing,
faith to fully embrace your grace,
and wisdom to live in your peace.
Enable us to bear your light into the world.
In Jesus’ name,
Amen

Q4U: Which one of these declarations is the most difficult for your to embrace? Or which one is the dearest for you?

Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you wait for God’s timing, embrace grace and live in peace!

Image Zachariah writes down the name of his son by GHIRLANDAIO courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. Linking up today with Brag on God Friday.

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