Sunday, 28 December 2014

Zechariah's Prophecy: Episode 3 (Luke 1:67-79)

Hello All,
The part of the poem that we will be emphasising on today is highlighted in blue. The black colour text in the poem is a recap of what we have already done last week.
Let us now continue with the third and final episode of this poem…

Zechariah's Prophecy: Episode 3 (Luke 1:67-79)
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling (27th Nov 2014)
There once was a Jewish priest named Zechariah
Who was from the priestly order of Abijah
His dear wife was from the priestly line of Aaron
Her name was Elizabeth and she was barren

They were righteous and upright before the Lord's eyes
His commandments and decrees they did not defy
They lost hope of having a child for they were old
Until the birth of John the Baptist was foretold

By Angel Gabriel and fulfilled quite soon after
His miraculous birth brought much joy and laughter
Zechariah, filled with the Spirit, joyfully
Broke into songs of praise and gave this prophecy:

'Praise the Lord, the magnificent God of Israel,
His eternal love and faithfulness never fail
For he has visited and redeemed His people
He has sent us a Saviour who's strong and able

He is the prophesied and promised Descendant
From the royal line of King David, His servant
Now we will be saved from our ruthless enemies
To our ancestors, He has shown grace and mercy

By remembering His sacred covenant
Made with our ancestor, Abraham, His servant
We have been rescued from our cruel enemies
So that we can serve God without timidity

With no trace of fear, for He has made us holy
And righteous through our Saviour in His great mercy
We can serve the God of Israel for all our days
For as long as we live on earth, in every way

You, my son, will be called the prophet of the Most High
Because you will prepare the way for the Lord by
Telling people how to find salvation in Him
Through the pardoning and forgiveness of their sins

Because of God's tender mercy, the morning Light
From heaven will dawn upon us and bestow sight
To those in darkness, from death they will find release
This Light will guide and keep us in the path of peace'


Points for Reflection:
[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.
(Luke 1:76-77 ESV)
·         I am not sure if you would have felt that it was strange for Zechariah to begin his prophecy with the Messiah instead of his own son right after the birth of the long awaited child.
·         8 verses from the Bible were allocated for Jesus Christ whereas only 4 verses for Zechariah’s son, John the Baptist.
·         It is a very natural thing for all attention to be focused on a newborn baby.
·         But through Zechariah’s prophecy, we learn that no matter how much we may love and care for a newborn baby, God should always be our first priority.
·         Zechariah’s words to his son were not for self-glorification but they clarified the way that John the Baptist was meant to point people to Christ.
·         God’s plan for John the Baptist was to devote his life in telling others to repent of their sin and find salvation in Jesus Christ.
·         Later in his life, John the Baptist said the following words:
“He [Christ] must increase, but I must decrease.”
(John 3:30 ESV)
·         Have you been telling others about the gospel? In your pride, have you been tempted to take the glory for yourself instead of pointing others to Christ? How can you, like John, say, ‘He must increase, but I must decrease’?

·         As this year is drawing swiftly to an end, make it your resolution for the New Year to devote your life in service to Christ for His glory.