BACKGROUND FOR THIS EPISODE
(In Order of Appearance)
NEW TESTAMENT OF THE BIBLE:
- Luke 1:5-7– During the time when Herod the Great ruled Judea, there was a Jewish priest named Zechariah. He belonged to Abijah’s section.a His wife came from the family of Aaron. Her name was Elizabeth. 6They were both truly righteous before God, doing everything which was right and everything the Lord God commanded. They were spiritually spotless. 7However, they had no children. Elizabeth could not have a baby. And, both of them were very old.
- There were so many priests (descendants of Levi) in Bible times, they had to be divided into 24 groups, each serving one month every other year, then going back home (1 Chronicles 24:10,19). Because Zacharias went back home (Luke 1:23) apparently without Elizabeth, he obviously went to Jerusalem without Elizabeth.
- Luke 1:23 – When Priest Zechariah’s time of temple service was over, he went home.
- Luke 1:6-8 – They were both truly righteous before God, doing everything which was right and everything the Lord God commanded. They were spiritually spotless. 7However, they had no children. Elizabeth could not have a baby. And, both of them were very old. 8Zechariah was serving as a priest before God for his section
- Luke 1:13 –13But the angel said to him, “Zechariah, don’t be afraid. Your prayer has been heard. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give birth to a son for you. You will name him John.
- Luke 1:18-20– Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure of this!? I am an old man, and my wife is old, too.” 19The angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand before God. God sent me to talk to you and to tell you this good news. 20Now, listen! You won’t be able to talk until the day when these things occur. You will lose your speech, because you didn’t believe what I told you. Nevertheless, these things will come true in their proper time.”
- Luke 1:24 – Later, Elizabeth, Zechariah’s wife, became pregnant. So, she didn’t go out of her house for five months.
- Luke 1:16-17 – He will help many Jewish people turn back to the Lord their God. 17John himself will go ahead of the Lord in a powerful way, like Elijah.e He will have the same forceful spirit that Elijah had. He will make peace between fathers and their children. He will bring those people who are not obeying God back to the right way that people should think. He will prepare a people for the coming of the Lord.”
- Luke 1:24-27– Later, Elizabeth, Zechariah’s wife, became pregnant. So, she didn’t go out of her house for five months. She said, 25“Look what the Lord God has done for me! My people were ashamedg of me, but now the Lord God has taken that shame away.” 26-27During Elizabeth’s sixth month of pregnancy, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a virgin who lived in a town named Nazareth, in Galilee. The virgin girl was engaged to marry a man named Joseph, from the family of David. Her name was Mary.
- Luke 1:36-53 – Now listen to this: You know that Elizabeth, your relative, is very old, but she is already pregnant with a son. The woman who could not have a baby has been pregnant for six months! 37With God, nothing is impossible!” 38Mary said, “Listen, I am the servant girl of the Lord God. Let what you said happen to me!” Then the angel left her. 39Mary got up at that time, and she went quickly to a town in the hill country of Judea. 40She went into Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. 41When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the unborn baby kicked inside Elizabeth’s body. And, Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42Then Elizabeth said with a very loud voice, “Mary, you have been blessed more than any other woman! The baby to which you will give birth has also been blessed! 43You are the mother of my Lord, and you have come to me! How could something this good happen to me!? 44Listen, when I heard your voice, the baby inside me jumped for joy. 45You are blessed, because you believed that what the Lord God said to you would actually take place.” 46Then Mary said, “My soul praises the Lord God. 47My heart is happy, because God is my Savior. 48Though I am not important,God has looked upon me, His servant girl. Listen! From now on, all generations will be happy for me, 49because the Powerful One has done great things for me. His Name is holy. 50God will always give His mercy to those who worship Him. 51His arm is strong. He scatters those who are proud and boastful. 52He pulls men down from their thrones, and He raises up the humble ones. 53He fills hungry people with good things, but He sends rich, selfish people away with nothing.
- Luke 1:56-64 – Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months. Then Mary returned home. 57When it was time for Elizabeth to give birth, she had a son. 58Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord God had been very good to her. They rejoiced with her. 59Eight days later, they came to circumcisej the child. They wanted to name him Zechariah, because this was his father’s name. 60But his mother said, “No! He will be called John, instead.” 61The people said to Elizabeth, “But no one in your family is named John!” 62Then they began to make signs to his father, asking: “What would you like to name him?” 63Zechariah motioned for something to write on. Then he wrote, “His name is John!” All of the people were surprised. 64Instantly, Zechariah could talk again. He began to praise God.
- Luke 1:80 – And so, the little boy was growing up and becoming stronger in spirit. John lived in the desert, away from other people, until the time when he came out to proclaim to Israel.
OLD TESTAMENT OF THE BIBLE:
- Psalm 89:4,27 [PREDICTED 1000 YEARS BEFORE JESUS] – ‘I will cause your family to continue forever.b Your kingdom will last from now on.’ ”…27I will appoint him my firstborn son. He will be the greatest king on earth.l
- Malachi 3:1 [PREDICTED 430 YEARS BEFORE JESUS] – Yahweh of the armies of heaven says: “Listen, I will send My messenger.a He will prepare the way ahead of Me. Suddenly, the Lordb whom you people are looking for will come to His temple.c Listen, the Angel of the Covenantd whom you desire will come!”
- I Kings 18:18 – Elijah answered, “I am not the one who has caused so much trouble for Israel! It is you and your father’s dynasty who have caused all this trouble! You have abandoned the commands of Yahweh! You have followed the Baals [gods]!b
- Malachi 4:5-6 [PREDICTED 430 YEARS BEFORE JESUS] – “Behold, I will send Elijah the prophetf to you people. He will come before that great and awesome day when the Always-Present One will judge everybody.g 6Elijah will help fathers love their children.h And, he will help the children love their fathers. Otherwise, I will come and put a cursei upon the land!”
- Deuteronomy 22:1-22 – [Detailed intricate day-by-day laws and their requirements]
- Deuteronomy 23:2 – “No one born out of wedlockd may come into the assembly of the Always-Present One. His descendants may not come in for ten generations.e
Scriptures quoted by Elizabeth and Mary:
- Psalm 34:2-3 – My whole being praises Yahweh. The poor people will hear and be glad. 3Let us praise His Name together! Tell of the greatness of Yahweh with me.
- Psalm 138:6 – Although Yahweh is supreme, He still takes care of those who are humble.b But He knows to stay away from those who are proud.
- Psalm 71:19 – O God, Your justice reaches up to the skies. You have done such great things. O God, there is no one like You!
- Psalm 111:9 – He sets His people free. He made His covenant everlasting.His Name is holy and awesome.
- Psalm 103:17 – But Yahweh’s constant love for those who revere Himcontinues forever and ever. And, His fairness continues to their grandchildren
- Psalm 98:1-3 – Sing a new song to Yahweh, because He has done wonderful things.By His right hand and holy arm,a He has won the victory. 2Yahweh has announced His power to save. He has shown His justice to the foreign nations.b 3He has remembered His constant love and His loyalty to the people of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen God’s power to save.
- Psalm 107:11 -They had turned against the words of God.g They had refused the advice of God, the Most High
- Isaiah 40:10 – Look, the Lord Yahweh is coming with power. He will use His power to rule all of the people. Look, He will bring a reward for His people. As He comes, He will bring along their pay.
SPECIAL CHARACTERS APPEARING IN OTHER EPISODES
Season 8, Star Song, “Silent Thunderbolt”
Season 1, Dream Maker, “Hesitant Herald”
Season 3, Folk Hero, “Gates of Glory”