December 19, 2016
Luke 1; 5-25
In Luke’s Gospel today, the Annunciation of John the Baptist birth was read. Zechariah, a man of the priestly class, enters the sanctuary, and is greeted by Gabriel with “Do not be afraid,” like how Abram and the Shepherds were addressed. Gabriel commands the child to be called “John,” meaning, “God has shown favor,” an indication of his role for the coming Christ.
The importance of the reading is to have faith in God; Zechariah is struck mute, when he questions, for his disbelief; he reasons the impossibility due to both Elizabeth’s and his elderly age. But contrast this with the Annunciation to Mary, when she questions, she does not disbelief in the power of God. She is accepting of her role as “the handmaid of the Lord.”