Read Luke 1:57-63. TEXT: Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son (Luke 1:57).
Finally Zechariah and Elizabeth's prayers are answered, and John is born. Their neighbors and relatives are especially joyful, coming together on the eighth day for their son's naming and circumcision. As the ceremony begins, they are about to name the child after his father. Unless Elizabeth speaks up, it will prove difficult for Zechariah to intervene.
But immediately Elizabeth breaks with tradition. She emphatically declines to name the child Zechariah, "No; he shall be called John." The people are puzzled. Why would she want to go against the tradition of naming the child after someone in the family? No one among their relatives is named John.
They aren't ready to accept her answer. Instead, they turn to Zechariah and make signs to ask what he wants to name the child. I always find it amusing to recall that the aged priest doesn't need them to make signs to him-he can hear just fine. He simply can't speak.
If Zechariah had any fear of peer pressure, he didn't show it. Still unable to talk because of his unbelief nine months before, Zechariah asks for a writing tablet. And as everyone looks on expectantly, Zechariah writes, "His name is John."
God chose a new name for Zechariah and Elizabeth's son because He was doing a new thing, sending His own Son to save the world. He likewise had wonderful plans for John. He would be Jesus' forerunner, preparing the way for the new covenant or testament that Jesus Christ would bring.
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for doing something new, for sending Your Son to save us from our sins. Bless us this Christmas season to receive Him who makes us new. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
To Download Devotion MP3 to your computer, right click here and select "Save Link As" or "Save Target As" or "Download Linked File As"