His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied: Blessed is the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has visited us and prepared redemption for his people. He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, just as he said long ago through the mouth of his holy prophets. He raised up salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us, in order to show mercy to our fathers by remembering his holy covenant, the oath which he swore to Abraham, our father, to grant deliverance to us from the hand of our enemies, so that we are able to serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. And you, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High, because you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give his people the knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of their sins, because of God’s tender mercies, by which the Rising Sun from on high will visit us, to shine on those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. The child continued to grow and became strong in spirit. He lived in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance to Israel.
Dear Heavenly Father,
You promised to send a Savior to your people for thousands of years. When he came, they must have felt the joy, knowing he would atone for all their sins. Zachariah says it so clearly as he sings your praise for giving him a son that would be the one preparing the way for Jesus. Now we wait for Jesus’ second coming. Once again, your people wait with great expectations about what will happen on judgment day and what heaven will be like. Lord, we celebrate this Christmas and remember how you sent your Son to redeem us from all our sins. He was the one promised in the Old Testament to come to this earth and save us. Jesus paid our ransom price. He gave himself up to be hung on the tree to atone for all our sins. Just as John prepared your people by telling them to repent of their sins and baptizing them with a baptism of forgiveness, Lord, we pray that you would prepare our hearts today as we anticipate the second come of our Lord. We bring all our sins before you and ask for your forgiveness of our sins that we may be ready also. Lift the darkness of our sins from us, and let us walk in the peace of your salvation. Thank you for sending John, but more importantly, for sending us our Savior, your Son. Amen.
Pastor Roger Emmons
Salvation comes to us only one way, through Jesus’ forgiveness, through his death on the cross. Jesus is our Savior.