“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us…” (Luke 1:68–71)
Today, I would like for you to notice two important things from these words of Zechariah recorded in Luke 1.
First, only nine months earlier, Zechariah could not believe that his wife was with child. Now, filled with the Holy Spirit, he is so confident of God’s redeeming work in the coming Messiah that he states a future event in the past tense. Zechariah’s faith saw a promised act of God as good as done. Zechariah has learned to take God at his word and so has a remarkable assurance: “God has visited and redeemed!”
Second, the coming of Jesus the Messiah is God making a physical to our world: “The God of Israel has visited and redeemed.” For centuries, the Jewish people had lived under the conviction that God had withdrawn Himself, that the words of prophecy had ceased, and Israel had fallen into the hands of Rome. All of the godly in Israel were still waiting for a visitation of God. Luke tells us in 2:25 that the devout Simeon was “looking for the consolation of Israel.” And in Luke 2:38 the prayerful Anna was “looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.”
These were days of great expectation for some. Now the long awaited visit of God was about to happen. He was about to come in a way no one expected. Many Jewish people are still waiting for the visitation to occur, but many are turning to Him today, just like the days of old.
The Messiah is about to appear and will be missed many. Don’t be one of them.
Shalom, until tomorrow, Lord willing,