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Luke 1:57-80

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Luke 1:57–80 NIV
57 When it was time for Elizabeth to have her baby, she gave birth to a son. 58 Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown her great mercy, and they shared her joy. 59 On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him after his father Zechariah, 60 but his mother spoke up and said, “No! He is to be called John.” 61 They said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who has that name.” 62 Then they made signs to his father, to find out what he would like to name the child. 63 He asked for a writing tablet, and to everyone’s astonishment he wrote, “His name is John.” 64 Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue set free, and he began to speak, praising God. 65 All the neighbors were filled with awe, and throughout the hill country of Judea people were talking about all these things. 66 Everyone who heard this wondered about it, asking, “What then is this child going to be?” For the Lord’s hand was with him. 67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied: 68 “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and redeemed them. 69 He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David 70 (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), 71 salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us— 72 to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, 73 the oath he swore to our father Abraham: 74 to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear 75 in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 76 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, 77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, 78 because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven 79 to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.” 80 And the child grew and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the wilderness until he appeared publicly to Israel.
Prayer

Introduction

Luke’s first volume for Theophilus; intending to give certainty to his belief in Jesus.
Luke is emphasizing the plan of God and the Kingdom of God as he recounts the story of Jesus.
So far we have seen:
An Angel tells Zacharias that his baron wife will have a child and that his name will be John.
An Angel tells Mary that she is going to have a baby boy who will be the messiah.
Mary visits Elizabeth in the sixth month of Elizabeth pregnancy.
Mary Sings a Song Praising God
Then we jumped into chapter 2 and saw the birth of Christ and the Angels declaration to the shepherds.

Verse 57-66

Imagine for a second that I’m a new husband and I come to you and ask “Why should we consider having children?” How woud you answer that question?
The Western Culture's View on Kids
They are disposable if they are not yet out of the womb
They are a burden on an overpopulated world
They can be a source of happiness, entertainment or a means to accomplish unfulfilled objectives in life. (vicariously living through a child)
They can be a bargaining chip for a relationship = "give me a baby"
They directly in conflict with the cultural value of personal freedom
Potential parents think the world needs more people with their genes... a pride in who they are and the world needs more of them.
The dilemma: I’ve been with my boyfriend for three years, and recently he has decided he wants kids when before we both shared views on not wanting them. He believes time will change my mind (he is 31 and I am 22), but I know myself. I am ready for every other big step in life – getting a house with him, getting married – both of which he has not expressed he wants. I want to believe I will change my mind, but I’m afraid it will then be too late for him to have kids. I’m scared he’ll resent me if I don’t give him a baby. And worse, I believe I will resent him if I do. Any advice? I don’t want to leave him, but I’m afraid it’s the more responsible decision. No matter how much it will hurt.
Mariella replies: Whoa, steady on! ...you’ve presented me with a more complicated situation than is immediately apparent. In isolation, the baby issue may appear momentous, but it’s actually more of a distraction. You are barely out of your teens and have years ahead of you in which to ponder your options on parenting. It would be unusual if you were chomping at the bit to get on with procreating when only 22 years old.
When it comes to breeding, we’re evolving into late starters, not least because with increasing lifelines we cling on to the distractions of youth for much longer. There are plenty of arguments about the best time to become a parent and, although leaving it too late is a bad idea, very few of the arguments weigh up on the side of extreme youth.
Why does he want to highlight an impasse that exists between you at a time when it’s truly not relevant?
Working out who you are and what you want to achieve is definitely more easily embarked on without the responsibility of raising a child. But don’t make the mistake of assuming what you feel now is what you will feel forever.
Adaptability is a key characteristic as we move through life... But I’d wager you’re in the majority of young women who’d prefer to defer until they’ve had time to enjoy unfettered freedom.
As I said at the outset, I can’t help feeling this isn’t about the reality of parenting. Your boyfriend is throwing down a challenge and you need to work out why and what it is... Is there any possibility that your boyfriend is actively trying to make you reconsider the relationship by pushing you on something he knows you can’t agree to? It would be a classic coward’s way out of discussing the more general misgivings he may be experiencing.
------------
Imagine for a second that I’m a new husband and I come to you and ask “Why should we consider having children?” How would you answer that question?
-----------
The Western Culture's View on Kids
They are disposable if they are not yet out of the womb
They are a burden on an overpopulated world
They directly in conflict with the cultural value of personal freedom
They can be a source of happiness, entertainment or a means to accomplish unfulfilled objectives in life. (vicariously living through a child)
They can be a useful bargaining chip for a relationship = "give me a baby as a demonstration of your love for me."
Potential parents think the world needs more people with their genes... a pride in who they are and the world needs more of them.
Luke 1:57–66 NIV
When it was time for Elizabeth to have her baby, she gave birth to a son. Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown her great mercy, and they shared her joy. On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him after his father Zechariah, but his mother spoke up and said, “No! He is to be called John.” They said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who has that name.” Then they made signs to his father, to find out what he would like to name the child. He asked for a writing tablet, and to everyone’s astonishment he wrote, “His name is John.” Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue set free, and he began to speak, praising God. All the neighbors were filled with awe, and throughout the hill country of Judea people were talking about all these things. Everyone who heard this wondered about it, asking, “What then is this child going to be?” For the Lord’s hand was with him.
Observations from the text:
He is brought into God’s covenant with Israel = circumcision
He is given a special name = John
The neighbors and relatives question what will this child become because of the special circumstances surrounding this birth.
Other Biblical Text on Children
27 So God created man ain His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
3 Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
3 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine In the very heart of your house, Your children like olive plants All around your table. 4 Behold, thus shall the man be blessed Who fears the Lord.
In the very heart of your house, Your children like olive plants All around your table. 4 Behold, thus shall the man be blessed Who fears the Lord.
Your children like olive plants
All around your table.
4 Behold, thus shall the man be blessed Who fears the Lord.
Who fears the Lord.
The Biblical view of Children
They are a gift or reward from God
They are a part of God's original plan in the Garden (be fruitul and multiply)
They represent God's plan unfolding in the World
The fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant was contingent upon God giving Abraham a son.
God works through kids before they are even grown (Joseph given a dream, David the shepherd boy... Hezekiah the young king)
Final Thoughts
Baltimore’s problems with kids performing poorly on their standardized testing is more then an educational problem. It goes deeper then the classroom. The pressure that is being put on schools is unfair.
Notice that the parents in this story give this child a name and unite him to God through the covenant of circumcision. The neighbors and relatives are there to support but the authority and responsibility lies with the parents.
Just this morning there was an Op-Ed in the Baltimore Sun entitled Unearthing Baltimore’s Hidden Potential
Let God renew your mind… allow God’s Spirit to change the way you think about common aspects of life.

Verse 67-80

Luke 1:67–80 NIV
67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied: 68 “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and redeemed them. 69 He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David 70 (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), 71 salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us— 72 to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, 73 the oath he swore to our father Abraham: 74 to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear 75 in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 76 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, 77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, 78 because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven 79 to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.” 80 And the child grew and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the wilderness until he appeared publicly to Israel.
Note: the filling of the Holy Spirit is mentioned in vs 67... A similar statement to what we see in Acts. (; , ; ; ; , )
the filling of the Holy Spirit is mentioned in vs 67... A similar statement to what we see in Acts. (; , ; ; ; , )
Wiersbe Summarizes Zacharias' song
The opening of a prison door (vs. 68)
The winning of a battle (vs. 69-75)
The canceling of a debt (vs. 76-77)
The dawning of a new day (vs. 78-79)
Let’s focus on verse 77
Luke 1:77 NIV
77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins,
I have said it before and I’ll say it again… We should be preaching the gospel to ourselves on a daily basis. The knowledge of our salvation is so fundamental to life.
The Four Movements of the Gospel
Creation - created in the image of God and intended to be in a loving relationship with God for eternity
Fall - all have rebelled against God, experience death on a universal scale and deserve eternal damnation for that rebellion
Redemption/Restoration - The story of scripture is the story of God redeeming people from their own cause and effect. The ultimate redemption of God was demonstrated through Jesus dieing on the cross for our sins so that we could be forgiven and rescued from the eternal damnation.
New Life - God is now at work in those who have surrendered their life. He is making all things new. Ultimately he will make a new heavens and new earth for us to enjoy with him.

Conclusion

A miracle baby was born because God has a plan to bring King Jesus into the world to redeem us and rescue us from all that we have messed up.
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