Social media can bring about all kinds of distraction for us, but I do enjoy new and fresh ideas from others. I, along with many others I am sure, will be reading a chapter of the Gospel of Luke each day up to Christmas. The story of the birth of Jesus will be told throughout the world this month. Children will dress up as wise men and churches will have Happy Birthday Jesus parties. The birth of our precious Savior is more than a story though, it is the truth that we stand on that tells the world, I have faith because I choose to believe in Jesus Christ.
This is not the first time that I have read Luke’s account of the birth of Christ yet today I read it with a truly intentional heart. I wanted to see something in the scriptures that I had never seen before and I did.
I begin with a question, who is Luke? Knowing your author is important, credibility speaks to us. Luke is more than the author of Luke and Acts. Luke was a Gentile, an educated physician, a companion to Paul and a historian. I appreciate the picture that Luke paints for us in verses 1-4, Luke recognizes that this account has been told before nevertheless he has chosen to present the story to us in a special and important way. Luke tells us his account is: carefully investigated, everything from the beginning, an orderly account and with purpose–to know with certainty that these accounts are true.
A portion of the scripture (Luke 1:20) that knocked on the door of my heart was the moment that the angel, Gabriel told Zechariah that he would be silent. First, it is important to recognize that Zechariah and his wife Elizabeth were considered (Luke 1:6) righteous and blameless people. Nevertheless, he would lose his ability to speak. Let that resonate with you for a moment. Zechariah went from conversating with an angel about his future and asking questions (Luke 1:18) to suddenly being unable to speak. In that moment he was forced to listen and remain silent until the time was right, but why did this happen? We are told (Luke 1:20) that Zechariah “did not believe my (Gabriel’s) words…” Gabriel was sent by God and his words were important and should not have been questioned. Later when Zechariah could speak again he would tell of the coming King!
Another amazing part of this first chapter is God’s recognition and reward for 2 faithful women. Both Elizabeth and Mary were faithful to God. Elizabeth was an older woman who had been unable to bear children but her prayers did not go unanswered, Gabriel’s words for Zechariah were that they would bear a son, who we would come to know as John the Baptist. Let me reiterate that the couple was righteous and blameless in God’s eyes. Later, in Luke 1:28 Gabriel goes to Mary and speaks the beautiful words “Greetings, you are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” Mary, a virgin and a faithful woman of God would be blessed with carrying our King.
I encourage you today, as you read the book of Luke with me to make it a habit of being silent in your moments with God, listen and obey. Listen with an open heart even if you do not know where the story for your life is going. I also encourage you to practice daily the beauty of being righteous, blameless and faithful in your walk with the Lord.