The angel tells Zechariah that his prayer has been heard.
In the story leading up to this point, Luke hadn’t told us what Zechariah was praying for. No we know. He had been praying for Israel, of course, as a Jewish priest would do. But he and Elizabeth, unrealistic though it may have seemed because of their advanced years, had also been praying for a child.
Three times in Luke, we hear angels say, “Do not be afraid” – to Zechariah here, to Mary at the Annunciation, and to the shepherds in the field. In Luke’s Gospel, Jesus will also say those same words five times during his public life.
Anything in particular you’d like to pray for?
Anything going on in your life that has you scared?
God is saying to you: “Do not be afraid.”
- Little Blue Book, December 19