Monday, December 15, 2014

The Prophecy of Zechariah

The Prophecy of Zechariah            Luke 1: 67-79

       Zechariah knew from experience that praise belongs to God. In this prophecy, he first praises God for the child to be born of Mary, then refers to his own son , John. He describes the child to be born as the mighty Saviour, from the royal line of David.

      This is beautiful as he sees the unfolding happenings of God interrupting the years of distress and oppression. He is not so much interested in the calendar of God (  as Simeon was ) , but rather in the mercy God in keeping with God’s character and covenant.

        God’s promises through the prophets ( like Isaiah 9.6 ) were now opening as light from heaven. Hope from above and hope for the future were  coming into focus. The covenant to Abraham, that his seed ( The Messiah Galatians 3.16 ) would bring in worldwide blessing, for Israel and beyond, was now possible .  The promises  to David, that an heir would sit upon his throne forever was now being fulfilled. The Jewish hope of deliverance from oppressing enemies was within reach. The priestly ambition of Zechariah is touching – to serve God without fear in holiness and righteousness.

       The last half of the prophecy is largely about John. Yet not so much about John himself, but rather John in reference to the light from heaven ( Jesus ). John’s calling is from the Most High. His commission is to prepare the people for the Lord – Jehovah of the covenant about to appear among His people!  John was a burning lamp, but Jesus was the true light.

      “the light from heaven that is about to break upon us” NLT Verse 78.
This beautiful description of the coming of the Lord from heaven brings hope to all who sit in darkness, both Jew and Gentile.

       The last phrase of Zechariah’s prophecy is intriguing – “ to guide  us to the path of peace. Israel was inclined to fight for peace i.e. the conquest of Canaan, the wars of  King David, the rebellions of the Maccabees. Other kings tried for peace by compromise and collusion.
The coming Prince of Peace, was a new light on the path to peace. I will leave you to ponder the words of the heavenly hosts in Luke 2 “peace on earth”, the words of the master “ my peace I give unto you” John 15.
Considering the lack of peace in our day, what is the path of peace for the future????

May I encourage you to read and reread this section of Holy Scripture – Zechariah’s prophecy,    and be blessed by the Holy Spirit illuminating the hidden gems.

John McKee

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