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December 21, 2014 - Between the Silence and the Word that Enters It (Preparing the Way of the Lord) - Luke 1:57-66

posted Dec 23, 2014, 6:30 AM by Grant Garber   [ updated Jan 28, 2015, 6:45 AM ]
  • The silence of Christmas is quite important to our souls.  It is the time we gather up all of the other silent moments in our lives.
  • This silence forces us to confront ultimate questions like:  “Why am I here?”  “Is there anything I get to keep in life?”  “Does God remember me?”
  • Christmas insists that we bring the familiar silence into these days that lie ahead this week, and we hear the incredible news of a Word from God that enters the silence.  But this Word can’t just be spoken.  It has to become flesh and dwell among us – as it did on a silent night long ago.
Zechariah  =  “God will remember”
John  =  “God has been gracious”
  • We all live somewhere between these two names at Christmas.  We are between our great hopes and their fulfillment, between silence and the Word that enters it.
Zechariah’s hymn:
  • (Verses 68-71)  The first stanza gives praise to God for giving us a Savior.
  • (Verses 72-75)  The second stanza claims this Savior, Jesus, is the fulfillment of promises from long ago. 
  • (Verses 76-77)  The third stanza describes the role of Zechariah’s son John in preparing the way for this Savior, Jesus, who would deliver us all from the enemy within.
  • (Verses 78-79)  The fourth stanza looks for the tender mercy that the Savior will bring to the people.

  • You would think that if a father who has spent his life waiting to have a son was going to break out in song, he would sing about his own kid.  But, no, Zechariah begins to sing about Jesus.  He doesn't get to his own son until the third stanza.  Then he goes back to singing about Jesus again.
  • As adults who were formed by these early expectations, we live our lives trying so hard.  We act as if it were all up to us, and as if the hopes and fears of all the years are met in us.  So is it any wonder that we have so many silent moments that make it painfully clear that we cannot save anyone?  We can’t even save ourselves.
  • In the silence, Zechariah and we are forced to look and wait for a Word from God.
  • Christmas is a big week not because of what you have to do or because of the things you get to do for the people you love.  It is a big week because God enters the silence in Jesus Christ.  God has remembered, and God is gracious.  That is an amazing song of redemption.

Pastor Jim Spon | Luke 1:57-66 - Luke 1:68-79