The Dedication to Theophilus1 Many have undertaken to compile a narrative about the events that have been fulfilled ▼
▼Or events that have been accomplished, or events most surely believedamong us b 2just as the original eyewitnesses c and servants of the word d handed them down to us. 3It also seemed good to me, since I have carefully investigated everything from the very first, to write to you in an orderly sequence, most honorable e Theophilus, f 4so that you may know the certainty of the things about which you have been instructed. ▼
▼Or informed, h
Gabriel Predicts John’s Birth5 In the days of King ▼
▼Herod/Herodians: The name of the Idumean family ruling Palestine from 37 b.c. to a.d. 95; the main rulers from this family mentioned in the NT are: Herod Antipas(4 b.c.-a.d. 39) son of Herod the Great; ruled one-fourth of his father's kingdom (Galilee and Perea); killed John the Baptist and mocked Jesus; Herod I (37 b.c.-4 b.c.) also known as Herod the Great; built the great temple in Jerusalem and massacred the male babies in Bethlehem; Herod Agrippa I (A.D. 3744) The grandson of Herod the Great; he beheaded James the apostle and imprisoned Peter; Herod Agrippa II (A.D. 52ca 95) The great-grandson of Herod the Great; he heard Paul's defense. Herodians were political supporters of Herod the Great and his familyHerod j of Judea, there was a priest of Abijah’s division ▼ , l named Zechariah. His wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. 6 Both were righteous in God’s sight m living without blame n according to all the commands and requirements of the Lord. 7 But they had no children ▼
▼Lit childbecause Elizabeth could not conceive ▼
▼Lit Elizabeth was sterile or barrenand both of them were well along in years. ▼
▼Lit in their days8 When his division was on duty r and he was serving as priest before God, 9it happened that he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense. s 10At the hour of incense the whole assembly of the people was praying outside. 11An angel of the Lord t appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and overcome with fear. ▼
▼Lit and fear fell on him13 But the angel said to him:Do not be afraid v Zechariah,
because your prayer has been heard.
Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son,
and you will name him John. w
14 There will be joy and delight for you,
and many will rejoice at his birth.
15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord
and will never drink wine or beer. x
He will be filled with the Holy Spirit
while still in his mother’s womb. y
16 He will turn many of the sons of Israel
to the Lord their God.
17 And he will go before Him
in the spirit and power of Elijah,
to turn the hearts of fathers
to their children z
and the disobedient
to the understanding of the righteous,
to make ready for the Lord a prepared people. aa
18 “How can I know this?” Zechariah asked the angel. “For I am an old man, and my wife is well along in years.” ▼
▼Lit in her days19 The angel answered him, “I am Gabriel ac who stands in the presence of God ad and I was sent to speak to you and tell you this good news. 20Now listen! You will become silent and unable to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time.” 21 Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah, amazed that he stayed so long in the sanctuary. 22When he did come out, he could not speak to them. Then they realized that he had seen a vision in the sanctuary. He kept making signs to them ae and remained speechless. 23 When the days of his ministry were completed, he went back home. 24 After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived and kept herself in seclusion for five months. She said, 25“The Lord has done this for me. He has looked with favor in these days to take away my disgrace af among the people.”
Gabriel Predicts Jesus’ Birth26 In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel ag was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth ah 27 to a virgin ▼
▼engaged: Jewish engagement was a binding agreement that could only be broken by divorce.engaged aj to a man named Joseph, of the house of David. ak The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And the angel came to her and said, “Rejoice, favored woman! The Lord is with you.” ▼
▼Other mss add blessed are you among women29 But she was deeply troubled am by this statement, wondering what kind of greeting this could be. 30 Then the angel told her:Do not be afraid, Mary an
for you have found favor with God.
31 Now listen:
You will conceive and give birth to a son,
and you will call His name Jesus. ao
32 He will be great
and will be called the Son of the Most High ap
and the Lord God will give Him
the throne of His father David. aq
33 He will reign over the house of Jacob ar forever,
and His kingdom will have no end. as
34 Mary asked the angel, “How can this be, since I have not been intimate with a man?” ▼
▼Lit since I do not know a man35 The angel replied to her:“The Holy Spirit will come upon you au
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore, the holy One to be born
will be called the Son of God. av
36 And consider your relative Elizabeth – even she has conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called childless. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” aw 38“I am the Lord’s ▼
▼slave: The strong Greek word doulos cannot be accurately translated in English by "servant" or "bond servant"; the HCSB translates this word as "slave," not out of insensitivity to the legitimate concerns of modern English speakers, but out of a commitment to accurately convey the brutal reality of the Roman empire's inhumane institution as well as the ownership called for by Christ.slave,” ▼
▼Lit Look, the Lord’s slavesaid Mary. “May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel left her.
Mary’s Visit to Elizabeth39 In those days Mary set out and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judah 40where she entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped inside her ▼
▼Lit leaped in her abdomen or womband Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. ba 42 Then she exclaimed with a loud cry:“You are the most blessed of women,
and your child will be blessed! ▼
▼Lit and the fruit of your abdomen (or womb) is blessed
43 How could this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For you see, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped for joy inside me! ▼
▼Lit in my abdomen or womb45 She who has believed is blessed because what was spoken to her by the Lord will be fulfilled!”
Mary’s Praise46 And Mary said:My soul proclaims the greatness of ▼
▼Or soul magnifiesthe Lord be
47 and my spirit has rejoiced bf in God my Savior bg
48 because He has looked with favor
on the humble condition of His slave.
Surely, from now on all generations
will call me blessed bh
49 because the Mighty One bi
has done great things for me bj
and His name bk is holy.
50 His mercy is from generation to generation bl
on those who fear Him.
51 He has done a mighty deed with His arm; bm
He has scattered the proud
because of the thoughts of their hearts;
52 He has toppled the mighty from their thrones
and exalted the lowly.
53 He has satisfied the hungry with good things bn
and sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped His servant Israel,
mindful of His mercy ▼
55 just as He spoke to our ancestors,
to Abraham and his descendants ▼
▼Or offspring; lit seedforever.
56 And Mary stayed with her about three months; then she returned to her home.
The Birth and Naming of John57 Now the time had come for Elizabeth to give birth, and she had a son. 58 Then her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown her His great mercy ▼
▼Lit the Lord magnified His mercy with her, br and they rejoiced with her. 59 When they came to circumcise the child on the eighth day bs they were going to name him Zechariah, after his father. 60 But his mother responded, “No! He will be called John.” bt 61 Then they said to her, “None of your relatives has that name.” 62 So they motioned to his father bu to find out what he wanted him to be called. 63He asked for a writing tablet and wrote: HIS NAME IS JOHN. And they were all amazed. 64 Immediately his mouth was opened bv and his tongue set free, and he began to speak, praising God. 65 Fear came on all those who lived around them, and all these things were being talked about throughout the hill country of Judea. 66 All who heard about him bw took it to heart, saying, “What then will this child become?” For, indeed, the Lord’s hand was with him.
Zechariah’s Prophecy67 Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit bx and prophesied: by 68 Praise the Lord, the God of Israel bz
because He has visited
and provided ▼
▼redemption/redeemed: The deliverance from bondage by a payment or ransom (Mk 10:45; 1Pe 1:18-19)redemption for His people. cb
69 He has raised up a ▼
▼horn: A symbol of power based on the strength of animal hornshorn of salvation ▼
▼= a strong Saviorfor us ce
in the house of His servant David cf
70 just as He spoke by the mouth
of His holy prophets in ancient times; cg
71 salvation from our enemies
and from the clutches ▼
▼Lit the handof those who hate us.
72 He has dealt mercifully with our fathers ci
and remembered His holy covenant cj –
73 the oath that He swore to our father Abraham. ck
He has given us the privilege,
74 since we have been rescued
from our enemies’ clutches ▼
▼Lit from the hand of enemies
to serve Him without fear
75 in holiness and righteousness
in His presence all our days.
76 And child, you will be called
a prophet of the Most High cm
for you will go before the Lord
to prepare His ways cn
77 to give His people knowledge of salvation
through the forgiveness of their sins. co
78 Because of our God’s merciful compassion,
the Dawn from on high cp will visit us
79 to shine on those who live in darkness
and the shadow of death cq
to guide our feet into the way of peace.
80 The child grew up and became spiritually strong cr and he was in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance to Israel.
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