Proclaim. Mobilize. Equip.
Call 866-865-6253

Full of Surprises

December 1, 2018

In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah… And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. Luke 1:5-6

Elizabeth was a godly woman and she was married to Zechariah who was a priest. The couple did not have children, and Luke tells us that they were advanced in years (1:7).

An angel of the Lord appeared to Zechariah while he was serving in the temple and announced that Elizabeth would bear him a son. He did not believe the promise, and the power of speech was taken from him. Nobody is helped by the words of a priest who does not believe the Word of God, and so Zechariah was silenced until the promise of God was fulfilled.

Think about this from Elizabeth’s perspective: Her husband comes home from work, and he is unable to speak. He makes signs, he writes words on a tablet, but he remains silent.

Then some time later, to her great joy, she finds that she is pregnant. Weeks and then months pass, and one day there is a knock at the door. It is Mary, a relative in her family.

The visit would have been a complete surprise to Elizabeth. We live in a world of planning. Who is coming for Christmas? When are they coming? And when are they leaving?

But the ancient world was very different. It was full of surprises. With no cell phones, texts, or emails to make endless arrangements, they lived in a world where people just showed up. And that is what happened here.

How would you react if somebody just showed up at your house this Christmas?


The Author
Colin Smith

Colin Smith is the senior pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near - So Far. Colin is the president and teacher for Unlocking the Bible. Follow him on Twitter.



Explore this topic further

Where Is Your Faith?

“Where is your faith?” Luke 8:25 Imagine what it would be like to have breakfast with Jesus. Picture yourself sitting in McDonald's or Panera, with Jesus on the other side of the table. As he eats his pancakes, you seize the opportunity to tell him what’s on your mind. You...

Read Post

When Jesus Asks a Question

They [the disciples] set out, and as they sailed he [Jesus] fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water and were in danger. And they went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” And he awoke and rebuked the wind...

Read Post

The Subtle Test of Success

“The Lord your God is bringing you into a good land…and you will lack nothing.” Deuteronomy 8:7, 9 When God brought his people Israel out of slavery in Egypt, he made a covenant with the people: “I will be your God and you will be my people.” And he provided...

Read Post
For your gift of any amount

Heaven, So Near - So Far

The Story of Judas Iscariot

Get Unlocking the Bible's Weekly Email

"This Week at Unlocking the Bible" features new articles, radio programs, devotionals, and ministry updates

We will never sell or misuse your information.