Christmas Characters

“What is your one prayer?”

by
Craig Walker
-
December 3, 2017

“What is your one prayer?”

Zacharias and Elizabeth


“In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zacharias, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron.  Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly.  But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren; and they were both well along in years.” Luke 1:5-7

Since the final words of the Old Testament in Malachi, God had not spoken to His people.

It was a hopeless situation.


“Once when Zacharias’ division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God, he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense.  And when the time for the burning of incense came, all the assembled worshippers were praying outside. Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense.  When Zacharias saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear.  But the angel said to him, ‘Do not be afraid, Zacharias; your prayer has been heard...’” Luke 1:8-13a

“Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John.  He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord.” Luke 1:13b-15a

“Zacharias asked the angel, ‘How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.’  The angel answered, ‘I am Gabriel.  I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news.  And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words which will come true at the proper time’.” Luke 1:18-20

After Zacharias had committed his problem to God, he simply kept on with the job God had given him to do. 

Zacharias and Elizabeth names together mean, “Jehovah remembers his oath.” 

“Now these things happened to those people as an example, but are written for our instruction, on whom the ends of the ages have come.” 1 Corinthians 10:11 LEB

“And it happened that while he was in a certain place praying, when he stopped a certain one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John also taught his disciples... Luke 11:1 LEB
... And he said to them, “Who of you will have a friend, and will go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves... Luke 11:5 LEB

And I tell you, ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” Luke 11:9-10 LEB

God is teaching us how to fight!

“Blessed be the Lord, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle; he is my steadfast love and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield and he in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me.” Psalms 144:1-2 ESV
“For although we are living in the flesh, we do not wage war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but powerful to God for the tearing down of fortresses, tearing down arguments and all pride that is raised up against the knowledge of God, and taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 LEB

Taking every thought captive! That takes training.


“So it was, on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child; and they would have called him by the name of his father, Zacharias. 60 His mother answered and said, “No; he shall be called John.” But they said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who is called by this name.” So they made signs to his father—what he would have him called. And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, saying, “His name is John.” So they all marveled. Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, praising God.” Luke 1:59-64

What is your one prayer?