The Spirit of Elijah 5 - Zacharias: Father of John the Baptist
Z acharias: Father of John the Baptist
Four hundred years had passed and there had been no Word from God. The Lord remained silent. Jehovah chose not to speak.
Suddenly, the Archangel Gabriel appeared. God spoke!
Let God speak:
Luke 1:5-25 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. And they had no child, because that Elizabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years. And it came to pass, that while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his course, According to the custom of the priest's office, his lot was to burn incense when he went in to the temple of the Lord. And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the time of incense. And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elizabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and he shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall 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 a people prepared for the Lord. And Zacharias said unto the angel, Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man and my wife well stricken in years. And the angel answering said unto him, I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and am sent to speak unto thee, and to show thee these glad tidings. And, behold, thou shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day these things shall be performed, because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. And the people waited for Zacharias, and marvelled that he tarried so long in the temple. And when he came out, he could not speak unto them: and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple: for he beckoned unto them, and remained speechless. And it came to pass, that, as soon as the days of his ministration were accomplished, he departed to his own house. And after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and hid herself five months, saying, Thus hath the Lord dealt with me in the days wherein he looked on me, to take away my reproach among men.
Zacharias was faithfully executing the ministry God had called him to: burning incense on the altar of incense. The angel appeared on the right side of the altar.
The altar of incense speaks of prayer and praise.
Revelation 8:3-5 And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand. And the angel took the censer, and filled it fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.
The revelation came to Zacharias that he would bring forth a ministry to prepare a people for the first coming of the Lord.
So today as the church ministers to the Lord with praise, prayer and worship, a people will be prepared for the second coming of the Lord.
The divine pattern yet again comes into view.
Hebrews 8:5 See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern showed thee in the mount.
Let us build according to the pattern!