Day 1: December 1, 2019

In the short span of just one chapter in Luke we see the births of John the Baptist and Jesus foretold and then the actual birth of John the Baptist, who “will go before the Lord to prepare his ways” (v. 76). Can you imagine what Mary was feeling as the angel Gabriel came to her to tell her she would give birth to “the Son of the Most High” (v. 32)? Yet, she demonstrates incredible submission and obedience because when you trust who you are serving, surrender is easy.

Luke 1

Dedication to Theophilus

Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

Birth of John the Baptist Foretold

In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

18 And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” 19 And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” 21 And the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they were wondering at his delay in the temple. 22 And when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple. And he kept making signs to them and remained mute. 23 And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home.

24 After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she kept herself hidden, saying, 25 “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”

Birth of Jesus Foretold

26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

Mary Visits Elizabeth

39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, 40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”

Mary’s Song of Praise: The Magnificat

46 And Mary said,

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
    For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.
50 And his mercy is for those who fear him
    from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm;
    he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
    and exalted those of humble estate;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
    and the rich he has sent away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
    in remembrance of his mercy,
55 as he spoke to our fathers,
    to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”

56 And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home.

The Birth of John the Baptist

57 Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. 58 And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. 59 And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child. And they would have called him Zechariah after his father, 60 but his mother answered, “No; he shall be called John.” 61 And they said to her, “None of your relatives is called by this name.” 62 And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he wanted him to be called. 63 And he asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all wondered. 64 And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. 65 And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea, 66 and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, “What then will this child be?” For the hand of the Lord was with him.

Zechariah’s Prophecy

67 And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying,

68 “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
    for he has visited and redeemed his people
69 and has raised up a horn of salvation for us
    in the house of his servant David,
70 as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,
71 that we should be saved from our enemies
    and from the hand of all who hate us;
72 to show the mercy promised to our fathers
    and to remember his holy covenant,
73 the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us
74     that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies,
might serve him without fear,
75     in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
76 And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;
    for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,
77 to give knowledge of salvation to his people
    in the forgiveness of their sins,
78 because of the tender mercy of our God,
    whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high
79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
    to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

80 And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance to Israel.

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.


Today, this week, this month, what would it look like for you to fully trust the Lord in the big and small things, and walk in obedience to what He is calling you to do?


13 thoughts on “Luke Chapter 1

  1. Amy said, “Behold, I am a servant of the Lord. Let it be done to me according to Your Word.” Lord, let me say this everyday. I submit myself to You and trust You in the big and small things. Help me to serve You without fear in holiness and righteousness for all my days. This is my heart’s desire.

  2. Mary humbled herself and agreed with what was going to happening to her. She submitted to God in full obedience not knowing or truly understanding everything that was going to happen to her at that moment. This is a great picture of trusting God. I pray that this season I pray that I could follow Mary’s example.

  3. What it looks like to fully trust the Lord and walk in obedience is that I go forth in confidence. I trust that what I want to do in my heart is put there by the Holy Spirit, because He tabernacles inside me and guides me to do God’s will…the Holy Spirit IS God in me.

    It is my duty to pursue a loving relationship with Christ and He takes care of the rest. He purposes my life to do His will and reconciles me to Him. I must turn from sin, repent, and learn to keep my eyes on Him. My heart is filled with joy, because He loves me and I love Him and we are dedicated to each other. (His dedication is unwavering, while I learn <3.)

      1. Verses 46 and 47 really stood out, challenged me and the words are so powerful. “Mary said: My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour”

  4. Love the fact that Zechariah was serving God and God called him to a place of solitude, of peace…so he could hear Gabriel’s message to him. Any of the other priest could have drawn the lot to go in and burn the incense. So often we don’t hear due to the noise around us even when we are serving. I pray God will open our eyes and ears to see and hear what He has for us to do and we won’t hesitate to go forward with it.

  5. I’m blown away by the first 4 verses.
    All of these different people (writers, eyewitnesses, ministers, Luke) knew the importance of Jesus. They knew it so deeply and wanted so desperately to ensure others would know, they took the time to write it down & pass it on. They made it a priority to tell the people they cared about and people they didn’t even know. They actually wanted people to know for certain who Jesus was.
    God, do I care enough about people, believe the gospel so passionately, want so desperately for people to know Jesus that I am willing to write an orderly account of Jesus for someone, send my friend a text telling them the good news of God’s love, or sit over a cup of coffee and tell a lost acquaintance what I know about Jesus? God help it to seem good to me, like it did to Luke, this Christmas, to share with each Theophilus you bring into my life everything I know about Jesus so they can know for certain the gospel of my savior & Lord.

  6. I am humbled by Zechariah’s witness and the immediateness of the Holy Spirit’s work in his speech:

    63 And he asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all wondered. 64 And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God.

    After being mute for months, Zechariah blessed God immediately and continued to bless God!

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