57 Now Elizabeth’s full time came for her to be delivered, and she brought forth a son. 58 When her neighbors and relatives heard how the Lord had shown great mercy to her, they rejoiced with her. 59 So it was, on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child; and they would have called him by the name of his father, Zacharias. 60 His mother answered and said, “No; he shall be called John.” 61 But they said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who is called by this name.” 62 So they made signs to his father—what he would have him called. 63 And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, saying, “His name is John.” So they all marveled. 64 Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, praising God. 65 Then fear came on all who dwelt around them; and all these sayings were discussed throughout all the hill country of Judea. 66 And all those who heard them kept them in their hearts, saying, “What kind of child will this be?” And the hand of the Lord was with him.
1. Read the first part of verse 57 again. “Npow Elizabeth’s full time came for her to be delivered,” We know that Elizabeth is having her baby, John, but as God’s delivering this baby, this life into the world, we also know that Elizabeth is being “delivered” from some other elements that aren’t life giving. We see some of them listed in previous verses. What are they?
2. Elizabeth’s family and neighbors didn’t just rejoice that she’s had a baby, but that God has shown her great mercy. How is this foreshadowing of what John would be proclaiming?
3. We see that Elizabeth’s community rejoiced with her over God’s mercy. Read Romans 12:15. We see that we are to act similarly. Is there someone that would be encouraged if they knew that you are rejoicing with them?