John the Baptist’s Birth Foretold

(A)In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the (B)division of [a]Abijah; and he had a wife [b]from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. They were both (C)righteous in the sight of God, walking (D)blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord. And yet they had no child, because Elizabeth was infertile, and they were both advanced in [c]years.

Now it happened that while (E)he was performing his priestly service before God in the appointed order of his division, according to the custom of the priestly office, he was chosen by lot (F)to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were in prayer (G)outside at the hour of the incense offering. 11 Now (H)an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12 Zechariah was troubled when he saw the angel, and (I)fear [d]gripped him. 13 But the angel said to him, “(J)Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and (K)you shall [e]name him John. 14 You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice over his birth. 15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will (L)drink no wine or liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit [f]while still in his mother’s womb. 16 And he will (M)turn many of the sons of Israel back to the Lord their God. 17 And it is he who will (N)go as a forerunner before Him in the spirit and power of (O)Elijah, (P)to turn the hearts of fathers back to their children, and the disobedient to the attitude of the righteous, to (Q)make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

18 Zechariah said to the angel, “How will I know this? For (R)I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in her [g]years.” 19 The angel answered and said to him, “I am (S)Gabriel, who [h](T)stands in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day when these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled at their proper time.”

21 And meanwhile the people were waiting for Zechariah, and were wondering at his delay in the temple. 22 But when he came out, he was unable to speak to them; and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple, and he repeatedly (U)[i]made signs to them, and remained speechless. 23 When the days of his priestly service were concluded, he went back home.

24 Now after these days his wife Elizabeth became pregnant, and she kept herself [j]in seclusion for five months, saying,

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  1. Luke 1:5 Gr Abia
  2. Luke 1:5 I.e., of priestly descent
  3. Luke 1:7 Lit days
  4. Luke 1:12 Lit fell upon
  5. Luke 1:13 Lit call his name
  6. Luke 1:15 Lit still from his
  7. Luke 1:18 Lit days
  8. Luke 1:19 Lit stand beside
  9. Luke 1:22 Possibly gesturing or nodding to them
  10. Luke 1:24 Or hidden

John the Baptist Is Born

57 Now the time [a]had come for Elizabeth to give birth, and she gave birth to a son. 58 Her neighbors and her relatives heard that the Lord had [b](A)displayed His great mercy toward her; and they were rejoicing with her.

59 And it happened that on (B)the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to call him Zechariah, [c]after his father. 60 And yet his mother responded and said, “No indeed; but (C)he shall be called John.” 61 And they said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who is called by this name.” 62 And they [d](D)made signs to his father, as to what he wanted him called. 63 And he asked for a tablet and wrote [e]as follows, “(E)His name is John.” And they were all amazed. 64 (F)And at once his mouth was opened and his tongue freed, and he began speaking in praise of God. 65 And fear came on all those who lived around them; and all these matters were being talked about in (G)the entire hill country of Judea. 66 All who heard them kept them in mind, saying, “What then will this child turn out to be?” For indeed (H)the hand of the Lord was with him.

Zechariah’s Prophecy

67 And his father Zechariah (I)was filled with the Holy Spirit and (J)prophesied, saying:

68 (K)Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
For He has visited us and accomplished (L)redemption for His people,
69 And has raised up a (M)horn of salvation for us
In the house of (N)His servant David—
70 (O)Just as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets (P)from ancient times—
71 [f](Q)Salvation (R)from our enemies,
And from the hand of all who hate us;
72 (S)To show mercy to our fathers,
(T)And to remember His holy covenant,
73 (U)The oath which He swore to our father Abraham,
74 To grant us that we, being rescued from the hand of our enemies,
Would serve Him without fear,
75 (V)In holiness and righteousness before Him all our days.
76 And you, child, also will be called the (W)prophet of (X)the Most High;
For you will go on (Y)before the Lord to (Z)prepare His ways;
77 To give His people the knowledge of salvation
[g]By (AA)the forgiveness of their sins,
78 Because of the tender mercy of our God,
With which (AB)the Sunrise from on high will visit us,
79 (AC)To shine on those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death,
To guide our feet into the (AD)way of peace.”

80 (AE)Now the child grew and was becoming strong in spirit, and he lived in the deserts until the day of his public appearance to Israel.

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  1. Luke 1:57 Lit was fulfilled
  2. Luke 1:58 Lit magnified His mercy with her
  3. Luke 1:59 Lit after the name of
  4. Luke 1:62 I.e., gestured or nodded
  5. Luke 1:63 Lit saying
  6. Luke 1:71 Or Deliverance
  7. Luke 1:77 Or Consisting in