Day 2

Zechariah & Elizabeth

Luke 1:5-25, Luke 1:57-66, 1 Samuel 1:9-18, Psalm 113:5-9

BY Erin Davis

In our broken condition, even mustard-seed faith is often hard to muster. Take Zechariah, for example. In the first chapter of his Gospel, Luke records that Zechariah had many reasons to trust God. He came from a family of priests who had served God for generations. Surely, the stories of God’s faithfulness had trickled down through Zechariah’s family line. Or maybe through the line of his wife, Elizabeth, who was also from the line of Aaron.

Who was Israel’s first high priest (Numbers 17:8–18:1).
Whose feet had felt the dry sand at the bottom of the Red Sea (Exodus 14:15–31).
Who tasted manna with his own taste buds (Exodus 16).
Who entered the holy of holies and saw God appear in a cloud above the mercy seat (Leviticus 16:2–3).

What stories of God might they have heard?

Zechariah was a praying man who had asked the Lord for a child, and Scripture tells us God heard that prayer (Luke 1:13). Since Zechariah and his wife were “well along in years” (v.18), we can assume they had been praying for a long time, likely decades. Hadn’t Zechariah kept praying in faith? Hadn’t he asked, expecting God to respond? Luke reveals that as Zechariah entered the temple to offer the incense offering, “the whole assembly of the people was praying outside” (v.10). Was his faith strengthened by the image of an entire assembly seeking the Lord?

With a heritage of faith, a history of God’s faithfulness, and the prayers of the people ringing in his ears, you’d think that trusting God would come naturally to Zechariah. Except, of course, it didn’t in this moment. When Gabriel announced that God heard Zechariah’s prayers and was about to do all that Zechariah asked and more, Zechariah replied, “How can I know this?” (v.18). From my own human experience, what I hear in his words is this: “How can I know for sure?” It seems Zechariah was overcome with doubt, not faith. Though he had so many reasons to stand tall on his trust in God, the legs of Zechariah’s faith wobbled. The angel struck him mute as a result (vv.19–20).

Because our hearts are still bruised from the fall, unwavering faith is hard won. Despite all that God has given us, do you, like Zechariah, still doubt that He will come through? Me too. When my need leads me to the intersection of fear and faith, I look at God’s promises and think, How can I know for sure?

Lean in. Listen to the angel’s answer.

“You will become silent and unable to speak until the days these things take place,
because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time” (v.20).

Though God certainly calls us to trust Him, we can read Zechariah’s story and find hope. Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power. His doubt didn’t stop John, the forerunner to Jesus, from being born. When your own legs of faith start to wobble, take courage, because nothing can stop the plans of God.

Post Comments (109)

109 thoughts on "Zechariah & Elizabeth"

  1. Audra says:

    My faith is beyond wobbly. Considering the insanity of this current time it so hard to hopeful or should I say faithful. I pray. I read the Bible. I talk to God so much, but…..I’m not sure wobbly is a proper word for my faith right now

  2. Brandi Smith says:


  3. Dawn W says:


  4. Samantha Delgado says:

    I started a business this past week and doubt keeps flooding my mind that it will be successful. I prayed before starting it and I pray everyday that God will just do what needs to be done to make it thrive. Before sitting down to start my devotions this morning I prayed that God would speak to me threw his word and he has threw today’s reading! He is faithful! If he told me to start this business then he will make sure that it will grow I just need to have faith and trust in him!

    1. Dawn W says:

      Hi Samantha! I am feeling the same way as you are. I started a business recently with my sister and I doubted it because I felt like I forgot to ask God about it first…even though we’d been talking about this for years. I felt guilty and that led to doubt. But I had to quickly relay that God will bless my desires and he himself had laid them on my heart. Stay encouraged! I will pray for you and your business as I pray for mine!

      1. Samantha Delgado says:

        You got it❤️!

  5. Laura Barthelmess says:

    So good! Praise the Lord!

  6. Gaby Dal sasso says:

    His faithful and won’t change ❤️

  7. Erin Clark says:

    This was just what I needed to hear lately. I’ve been praying the same prayer for years, yet, it feels as God’s not hearing them. To remember to trust in the Lord, who hears, who sees, who provides. Even when my faith is wavering, it doesn’t shake God’s power!

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