67 The Holy Spirit filled John's father, Zechariah, so that he spoke God's message:
He has come to save his people. He has come to make them free.
69 He has sent a very strong person who will save us.
This person comes from the family of his servant, King David.
70 Long ago, God promised that he would do this.
He gave his own prophets this message to speak.
71 God will save us from our enemies.
He will save us from everyone that hates us.
72 He has promised to be kind to our ancestors .
He will remember to do the things that he promised.
73 Yes, he will remember the strong promises that he spoke to Abraham. [o]
74 God said, “I will keep you safe from your enemies.
Then you can serve me and not be afraid.
75 You can live in a way that is good and right.
You can do this all your lives.” ’ [p]
76 Zechariah then spoke to John:
‘You, my child, will be called a prophet of the powerful God who is over all.
You will go in front of the Lord to prepare a way for him.
77 You will tell God's people how God can save them.
They have done wrong things but God will forgive them.
78 Our God will forgive us because he is very kind.
He will send someone from the highest place.
When this person comes, it will be like the sunrise for us.
79 He will bring light to people who are living without God.
It is like those people are living in the dark. They are afraid to die.
But he will shine on them.
He will show us how to live so that we will not be afraid.’ [q]
80 Zechariah's child grew. God made him strong in his mind. He went into the wilderness and he lived there for many years. Later, God sent him to Israel's people, to teach them. [r]
- [o]1:73 Because Christians are a part of the family of Abraham, God promised this to them too.
- [p]1:75 Zechariah's song shows how happy he is. God has been good to him and to Elizabeth. God has shown him how important John will be. Zechariah thanks God. He tells the people that God is great. Jesus is the strong person that God sent (1: 69).
- [q]1:79 The ‘sunrise’ (1:78) is a picture in words. It describes Jesus when he came to earth. God told Zechariah what John would do. John would speak to the people. He would tell them that Jesus was coming. Zechariah also knew why Jesus was coming to the earth.
- [r]1:80 You can read what John taught the people in Luke 3.