Luke 1:67-79 ZECHARIAH'S PROPHECY
1:67-79 Benedictus is from the first word Latin translation of "Blessed" and is the second canticle in the Book of Luke (see note above with verse 46). Here is yet another reference by Luke of the Holy Spirit in that Zechariah was "filled with the Holy Spirit." What happens when the Holy Spirit fills us up? Zechariah praised God with his first words after months of silence. The Old Testament prophesies were coming true and the wait was over. Now that is something to praise God about! I like the word "visited" in verse 68 because it is another way of saying God was born man. In verse 76 his words are directed to his child and I can imagine Zechariah talking to his little baby boy in his arms, looking into his eyes as John looks back, to tell him of the great plans God has for him, beginning the process of teaching his child about God. The word "sunrise" in verse 78 signifies the dawning of a new era, that of the New Testament covenant. I too can have the dawning of the newness every day with the sunrise to remind me of God's covenant with me and that I am forgiven. Isaiah 9:2 says, "The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined." Isaiah 60:1 says, "Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you." Every day can be my golden sunrise day!
Luke 1:80 John grew up and lived in the wilderness (desert). In 1:39, Mary visits Elizabeth "hill country of Judea" which is where John grew up with his parents. Was this like a wilderness or did John leave his home after he grew up and go out in the wilderness. Regardless, John was separated from "the worldly views" of economics and politics and hypocritical religious leaders. Living away from worldly views, he was able to focus solely on God and when the time came for him to deliver his message of the coming Christ, he would be prepared. He would be "different" and stand out. I think God also wants some of the same for us, to stay away from culture and worldly things and to focus on Him and to be different so we stand out as Christians. Luke mentions the spirit again, but this time with a lower case "s," in that John grew strong in the spirit. I ponder what it means to be strong in the spirit. The opposite would be weak spirited, which to me indicates a lack of drive, feeling down, and a nonchalant attitude. A strong spirit would be one with ambition, positivity, and a concerned attitude. The stronger the spirit, the less chance it will falter.