Elizabeth

Elizabeth has always intrigued me. Here was a Godly woman of the line of Aaron. She was married to Zechariah, who was a priest within the temple. Elizabeth’s name meant “God’s promise”. Luke 1:6 said of Elizabeth and Zechariah “Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly.” They sound like good people, right?

Elizabeth’s story has one twist to it that is similar to Sarah’s story that I did in an earlier blog. She was barren. Now, back in those times, having children was a big thing. If you didn’t have any children, it was considered a disgrace. But here, this woman was “upright in God’s sight”, so why the disgrace? She didn’t do anything wrong! She was blameless, yet she was also childless and probably through her menopausal years. So the last thing that would have been on her mind was getting pregnant with her husband was no spring chicken either. They were both advanced in age. But as in the case of Sarah, having this child at this age was probably a sign that God had some special plan in mind for this family.

Now Zechariah’s division of priests was on duty and he drew the lot to go into the temple of the Lord and light incense. Verses 11-17 tells us “Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth. Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” Wow. I bet that was an incredible sight and I bet he didn’t know what to say. But like Sarah, he questioned the angel about being older and his wife being past child bearing days. How was that possible? But the Lord had sent Gabriel to talk to Zechariah, the angel who stands at the right hand of the Lord. Gabriel assured him this was all true and that he would be mute until the day when it would all come to pass. Sure enough, when Zechariah came out of the temple, he could not speak about what he had seen. The others there knew something spectacular happened to him inside the temple, maybe a vision, but he could not verbalize what had happened to them.

When his time of service was done, he went home to Elizabeth and she did conceive a child. Once she found out that she was pregnant, she went into seclusion. It probably wasn’t the kind of seclusion because of shame, but more like when a doctor would put an at risk mom on bedrest. Elizabeth was older, so in terms today, she probably was an at risk mom. Just trying to take it easy.

When she was about 6 months pregnant, Mary, mother of Jesus, came to visit her. Mary was also pregnant at that time. When she greeted Elizabeth, the bible tells us in verses 41-45 said, “When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!”

Here’s where the miracle comes in. Of course, it was a miracle that she was pregnant and carrying a child at all, but for the 9 months that she carried this baby, her husband was mute. I know one of the things my DH and I did was to discuss names….what we wanted to call our babies if they were a girl or a boy. They didn’t have that opportunity. Zechariah was mute. So she gave birth and at the appropriate time, the family wanted to name her son after Zechariah, but Elizabeth said, “No, his name is John.” This puzzled the family since no one in that family had that name. They asked Zechariah and he grabbed a tablet and wrote on it “His name is John” and immediately, his tongue was released and he could speak again! He praised God like you wouldn’t believe! His family was in awe and probably wondered, “What is this child going to be?” Truly, God had a special plan for this baby boy, John.

Do you ever feel like Elizabeth? Do you follow Jesus with all your heart and all your soul, but for some reason, you don’t seem to have the things others do? Children, money, a good job…. but if you remain faithful like Elizabeth, God has plans for you. Elizabeth could have been angry at God for not giving her children, but she wasn’t. She knew that God loved her, and that he had a plan for her and her family. She was patient and waited on God’s plan to happen in God’s time. So, dear friend, please don’t ever think that God has forgotten you. He hasn’t.

I was at Women of Faith this weekend, and I looked around at a packed stadium of women. I was so overwhelmed to think that God could look down from heaven to this packed stadium of women, and He could see me . I had a friend there at the event several sections over from me, but you know what? I could see her where she sat! I imagined that was exactly how God could see me. He has a plan for each and every one of us on this planet. He can see you and he loves you. Wait on the Lord. Remain faithful to your marriage, blameless in the sight of God, and sit back and watch God’s plan unfold in your life in His perfect time.

1 Comment

  1. Thanks. I am struggling in my walk at the moment and I know I need to seek Him out everywhere. I love that you are doing these bilbe studies, they mean alot!


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