57 Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. 58 And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. 59 And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child. And they would have called him Zechariah after his father, 60 but his mother answered, “No; he shall be called John.” 61 And they said to her, “None of your relatives is called by this name.” 62 And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he wanted him to be called. 63 And he asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all wondered. 64 And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. 65 And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea, 66 and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, “What then will this child be?” For the hand of the Lord was with him. 67 And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying, 68 “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people 69 and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, 70 as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, 71 that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us; 72 to show the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant, 73 the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us 74 that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, 75 in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 76 And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, 77 to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, 78 because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high 79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”
Luke 1:57-79 ESV
I. The Gift of Children
A. Children are a miraculous gift from God and to believe otherwise has Satanic origins.
II. The Gift of a Name
A. John’s name reminded the Jews of God’s promise to give grace to us rather than get even with us for our sin.
B. God named John and his name was both communitive about the future and confusing to his family.
C. Once Zechariah had confirmed his son would be given a new name the name was final. God, our heavenly father has given us a new name in Christ, and His word is final. (Revelation 2:17)
III. The Gift of Mercy
A. Mercy brings joy to Elizabeth in her old age. Mercy brings praise to Zechariah in his newly formed faith.
B. The gift of mercy brings an end to their suffering and our suffering.
C. The mercy that ends our suffering brings us closer to God than if we had never suffered.
IV. The Gift of a Perfect, Purposeful, Powerful Plan of Peace
A. God has a powerful and perfect plan of salvation. (68-73)
B. God’s purpose for His plan was for us and the whole world to praise Him. (72-75)
C. God’s plan was to include a prophet to pontificate the plan and a proprietor to perform the plan. (76-77)
D. God’s plan was to pass on to us a perpetual, personal peace. (77-79) (Isaiah 9:2-7)
Two Births — Part Two Luke 2:1-14