ImmerseMessiah NLT - Page 15



LUKE
Many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have
been fulfilled among us. They used the eyewitness reports circulating
among us from the early disciples. Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write an accurate account
for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can be certain of the truth of
everything you were taught.
When Herod was king of Judea, there was a Jewish priest named Zechariah. He was a member of the priestly order of Abijah, and his wife, Elizabeth, was also from the priestly line of Aaron. Zechariah and Elizabeth
were righteous in God’s eyes, careful to obey all of the Lord’s commandments and regulations. They had no children because Elizabeth was unable
to conceive, and they were both very old.
One day Zechariah was serving God in the Temple, for his order was on
duty that week. As was the custom of the priests, he was chosen by lot to
enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense. While the incense was
being burned, a great crowd stood outside, praying.
While Zechariah was in the sanctuary, an angel of the Lord appeared to
him, standing to the right of the incense altar. Zechariah was shaken and
overwhelmed with fear when he saw him. But the angel said, “Don’t be
afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will
give you a son, and you are to name him John. You will have great joy and
gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the eyes
of the Lord. He must never touch wine or other alcoholic drinks. He will
be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth. And he will turn many
Israelites to the Lord their God. He will be a man with the spirit and power
of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will
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