December 6 – Luke 1:5-7. Zechariah and Elizabeth.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

December 6 – Luke 1:5-7. Zechariah and Elizabeth.

In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old.

In 1 Chronicles 24, we find David dividing up the sons of Aaron (the Levitical priests) for service.  This was the order in which they would enter the Tabernacle for service.  Abijah was the eighth name – not terribly special, just one of those who served.

Zechariah was not a high priest, he was a simple temple priest, living according to God’s laws and doing what was right.  It wasn’t necessarily a requirement that a priest’s wife also belong to the tribe of Levi, she only needed to be Jewish, but Elizabeth was also from the line of Aaron.  Their child would be of the priestly line.

It’s so interesting to see how God prepared His people for the coming of Jesus.  God set up the original plan for the priesthood which would care for His people and now, when He was about to introduce His Son to the world, that introduction would come from a man who grew up in the home of a righteous and blameless priest.

Zechariah and Elizabeth’s case reminds us of the story of Abraham and Sarah.  When they were old, they conceived a child that was the beginning of God’s response to the covenant He made with Abraham.  Abraham had been promised that His descendants would be greater than the grains of sand, the stars in the sky.

Now, this older couple would conceive a child who was the one to point the way to the New Covenant.