Luke 1

Posted Sunday August 26, 2012

I’m trying a new experiment: For the next few weeks, I’m going to take a passage of scripture, read it, and then write for thirty minutes. At this point in my life, I’ve read and heard enough scripture that simply letting my eyes slip over the page does little to help the Word soak in. My hope is that by writing, I’ll be forced to think more deeply about the scripture, and by posting it, I’ll be held accountable. My goal is to do one chapter a day, but I may split it up or lag a few days depending on how things go. (Actually, I’ve written a handful of these already, which will give me a little slack.) With the introduction out of the way, let’s begin Luke chapter 1.

We don’t hear anything about Zechariah outside of this chapter, but he is the central character here, and he undergoes a beautiful tranformation of faith. When Gabriel first declares that he will have a son, his reaction is skepticism. “How can I be sure of this?” But as he expresses his doubt, the angel’s reaction is blunt: Shut up. Literally.

I imagine (rather humorously) Zechariah’s trip home. He walks in the door, and hugs Elizabeth. But then there’s an awkward silence, because he can’t talk. How is he supposed to explain what happened? And how is he supposed to explain that they’re going to have a child?

But after a year of silence, the child is born, and Zechariah seems a different person. In fact, he is “filled with the Holy Spirit” and prophesies boldly about his son John. “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel.”