Thursday 24 December 2015

Bible Book:

“The dawn from on high will break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” (vv. 78-79)

Luke 1:67-79 Thursday 24 December 2015

Psalm: Psalm 10


Some readers will recognise this passage as the Benedictus, usedin some Christian traditions at morning prayer. It rounds offLuke's account of the birth of John the Baptist. It falls into twocontrasting parts.

Verses 68 to 75 could fit easily into any Old Testament context.They speak of deliverance from enemies and the restoration of thekingdom of David. If we read them by themselves we couldeasily see them as a song about the liberation of Palestine fromRoman rule. But we have to read them in the light of whatfollows.

Verses 76 to 79 refer to the infant John the Baptist. Heresalvation more specifically refers to forgiveness of sins (verse77), and "going before the Lord" (v. 76) must refer to Johnannouncing the coming of Jesus (see Luke3:1-22). Overall, it seems, the passage is saying that ancienthopes of political freedom are now being fulfilled in a new way, asdeliverance from sin. Zechariah's words are "prophecy" (v. 67) inboth senses, interpreting the present and declaring what is tocome.

To Ponder

  • What is your experience of God giving light to those who are indarkness?
  • What, for you, are the enemies from which you look to God fordeliverance?
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