Scripture: Luke 1:5-79 (The Angel appears to Zechariah and also to Mary; John the Baptist and Jesus are both foretold)
Both Zechariah and Mary were visited by an angel and given, frankly, rather astonishing news.
- Member of the priesthood; old in years
- Disbelieves angel when told he and his wife Elizabeth would have a son (educated in the law and word of God; should have known better)
- Punished with silence so he would learn to listen and watch for God
- Elizabeth stayed in seclusion for 5 months
- Elizabeth had been shamed being barren
- Zechariah and Elizabeth were rejoiced with over John’s birth
- Peasant girl; young
- Disbelieves the angel when told that she would have a son (lack of circumstances; an unmarried, engaged virgin)
- Given grace/explanation to give her hope
- Sought out her cousin’s wisdom and courage
- Would be shamed being unmarried and pregnant
- Mary and Joseph had Jesus in seclusion, neglected and alone
- These births were miracles, miracles that boggled the minds of those to whom they occurred.
In believing in miracles, we are believing in a God who can and will step down into our lives today and interact with us right now.
Christmas is a multi-cultural and varied holiday season and, while it can be rationalized historically and scientifically, we celebrate God taking Himself and setting Himself among us. He showed us love in action, forgiveness in practice, and peace in presence. This is miraculous! God is miraculous and He still gifts us with miracles today, when we belief that He will and watch in that belief for them. Our God is indeed a God of wonders.
Mankind cannot save themselves unless a miracle happens. And it has.