(Luke 1:66-70) Salvation Has Come To Israel And To The World

[Luke 1:66, BSB] “66 And all who heard this wondered in their hearts and asked, “What then will this child become?” For the Lord’s hand was with him.”

  • Everything that came about like Elizabeth, who was barren, got pregnant, Zechariah being mute, and the words of praise that were said got the people wondering: what was God going to do with their child (John the baptist)?

[Luke 1:67, BSB] “67 Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:”

  • The word “prophesied” means that the words that came forth are coming from another source other than the person. A person can only prophesy if they have the Holy Spirit, which it is He who speaks through the person.

[Luke 1:68, BSB] 68 “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, because He has visited and redeemed His people.”

  • Zechariah, inspired by the Spirit of God, exclaimed that God has indeed visited His people to save them. God appeared to them through Christ, who was going to be not only their sacrificial lamb to atone for their sins but also the rest of the world.

Jesus is the only one who paid for the sins of the world on the cross. No one can make it into heaven without placing one’s faith in Jesus Christ and asking Him for forgiveness.

[Luke 1:69, BSB] “69 He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David,”

  • The word “horn” means power and when put with the word “salvation” suggests that through the power of God alone, seen in Jesus’ death and resurrection, can salvation, atoning for the sins of the whole world, from the first man created, to the last one can be made possible. 

[Luke 1:70, BSB] “70 as He spoke through His holy prophets, those of ages past,”

  • The prophets of old prophesied concerning the Messiah that through Him, the message of salvation would come to Israel first and then to the gentiles. One of the biggest prophesies told in the Old Testament can be seen in Isaiah 53. It talks about how the Christ/Messiah would suffer for the sins of the world, and by His wounds (scourging and His death for us), we can find healing, that is salvation (by believing in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior).

All Scriptures are taken from the Berean Study Bible version (BSB). Permission has been acquired.

The Battle Lines That Christians Face

9 “Then they will hand you over to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. 10 And at that time many will fall away, and they will betray one another and hate one another. 11 And many false prophets will rise up and mislead many people.

-Matthew 24:9-11, NASB 2020

Christians are under extreme attack in today’s world. We see two line formations that have been formed against the Christian community. One of the lines is formed in the front, and the second line is formed behind.

The Line Formation In The Front

The first line formation is seen in verse 9. Tribulation (difficult times), which for some will cost them their lives for Jesus. These murderers are motivated by hatred of Jesus Christ all over the world. To name a few groups that are participating in this line formation (the front lines): One of them is Islam, who are killing Christians in countries like the Middle East, Africa, and in Asia, it is the communist party. The other groups who are hating believers in Christ are the LGBT, the Atheists, the socialists, the globalists, and those who might identify themselves with any of these groups but support them (the groups I mentioned) from afar.

The Line Formation In The Back

The line that is formed behind us [Christians] are false prophets (verse 11). They preach a different Jesus, Gospel, and a different Holy Spirit.

For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, this you tolerate very well!

-2 Corinthians 11:4, NASB 2020

False Christian converts are falling away (committing apostasy) in the back by the false prophets, who are deceiving them through a false gospel (Ecumenism), and on the front lines, the Christians are physically attacked.

What these attacks are accomplishing is shaking off like a fruit tree in the wind that drops the fruits that are not secure. These tribulations are shaking off of Jesus those who don’t love Him, showing who they are, not having genuine faith. Jesus only wants true believers, having the Holy Spirit living in their hearts. Those with the Holy Spirit living inside of them are the ones made into the image of Christ Jesus. The fake ones are not changed and reflect the world, not Christ, those are the ones He shakes off.

The good news is that we will endure because of the strength of the Lord. Jesus in John 17:15 prayed for us, “I am not asking You to take them out of the world, but to keep them away from the evil one.”

As Christians, we must hold the lines, both in the front and in the back, don’t allow them to break through. Hold the lines! Remember, we are fighting in the strength of the Lord, not in ours. David was a young man when he took down a giant named Goliath. He did so through the power of the LORD. We have this power, which comes from the Lord Jesus Christ, who lives in us.

Jobless With No Rent Money And Deeper In Debt

Have you found yourself, empty, without money for rent or food? Is your mind flooded with worry and despair? Let’s dive into the Scriptures and see why God allows times like these in our lives.

[1 Kings 17: 8-9] 8 Then the word of the LORD came to him, saying, 9 “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and stay there; behold, I have commanded a widow there to provide food for you.”

The LORD tells Elijah who ran out of food due to the fact that there was no more rain to go to a widow for shelter and food. It is interesting that this widow ran out of food herself and was about to starve to death. But God had a plan.

[1 Kings 17:10] 10 So he arose and went to Zarephath, and when he came to the entrance of the city, behold, a widow was there gathering sticks; and he called to her and said, “Please get me a little water in a cup, so that I may drink.”

Elijah just got to the widow’s place at her last meal. God’s provision comes when all hope is lost so that His hand will be very evident when He provides for you through a miracle. Blessing a believer in Jesus Christ with what they need is like doing it to the Lord Himself. See Matthew 25:34-40.

[1 Kings 17: 11-12] 11 As she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a piece of bread in your hand.” 12 But she said, “As the LORD your God lives, I have no food, only a handful of flour in the bowl and a little oil in the jar; and behold, I am gathering a few sticks so that I may go in and prepare it for me and my son, so that we may eat it and die.”

The prophet, Elijah asked the widow to bring him a meal even though whatever she had was just enough for her and her son. The woman knew that that day was her last meal, knowing that death was knocking at her door, asking for their souls. With the severe famine in the land, there was no hope for food for her and her family.

Some of us are just like this widow, without hope. We have no more money, rent is due and we are in serious debt. What to do? The Lord at times strips us of all resources that we rely on so that we may see the hand of the Lord in our lives to build up our faith.

[1 Kings 17:13-14] 13 However, Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go, do as you have said. Just make me a little bread loaf from it first and bring it out to me, and afterward you may make one for yourself and for your son. 14 For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel says: ‘The bowl of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil become empty, until the day that the LORD provides rain on the face of the earth.’”

The widow is told not to fear, which is to say, trust in the LORD. The LORD told the widow through His prophet, Elijah, to feed His servant first. By giving to Elijah first, showed strong faith in her part, trusting that somehow God was going to cause a miracle in her life because she put the LORD first, believing in God’s Word spoken to her that He was going to make the impossible happen.

[1 Kings 17:15-16] 15 So she went and did everything in accordance with the word of Elijah, and she and he and her household ate for many days. 16 The bowl of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil become empty, in accordance with the word of the LORD which He spoke through Elijah.

The woman put her faith into action and listened to the Word of God spoken through Elijah. By obeying, the LORD blessed her and her household exceedingly. The hardest time to have faith is when we see no hope at all. That is when we need to trust in Christ the most. How can we tell others to trust in Jesus Christ when we falter in that area and how can our faith grow without having to go through hard times as the widow?

[James 1:2-4] 2 Consider it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.