Luke 1:13 - But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John." NASU
We are not exactly sure when Zach started praying for a child, but we can surmise it has been some time. We know he is an older man (vs.7).
We know he isn't 50 years of age yet because that is the age when the Levitical Priests had to retire. Numbers 8:23-25 - Now the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 24 "This is what applies to the Levites: from twenty-five years old and upward they shall enter to perform service in the work of the tent of meeting. 25 "But at the age of fifty years they shall retire from service in the work and not work anymore. NASU
I would imagine, though, he was very close to 50 years of age when God is going to answer his prayer for a child.
Also, He may answer your prayer with a "No" or a "Yes" or He even may answer yours like He did Zach - after many years of praying.
When we pray we must realize that God is in control and will always answer our prayers at the appropriate time. When prayers are not answered the next day or the next week, it doesn't mean God isn't going to answer them.
The Israelites prayed for over 400 years to be freed from their Egyptian captivity, but when the time was right God sent forth Moses and freed them.
God's timing is always right.
Notice what God says in Galatians 4:4 - "But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,..." NASU
Before the birth of Jesus there must be the birth of John, who will become known as, John the Baptist. This is what Jesus says about John in Matt. 11:11- "Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist! NASU
That is quite the compliment.
Have you been born again?
If you really want to give yourself a Christmas gift, why not give yourself the greatest gift possible. Give yourself the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ.
As stated above, Jesus compliments John the Baptist, but He also compliments those who have entered into His spiritual kingdom when he compares them to John in Matt 11:11- Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. NASU
The name Elizabeth means "God is my oath".
The name John means "God is Gracious".
When you put these names together it says, "God remembers His oath and is Gracious."
He remembered His oath and sent us His Son who atoned for our sins and redeemed us.
I pray you will not ever forget that Christmas gift.
Think On This:
The way you spend Christmas is far more important than how much you spend.
Stay Pumped and Have a Merry Christmas,
Gary A. Serago
Minister of God's Word
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Gary A Serago.