Zacharias’s Song of Salvation—Part 1: The Davidic Covenant
(Luke 1:67–71)And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying: “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His people, and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of David His servant—as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from of old—salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us; (1:67–71)One expression of the joy that marks the redeemed (cf. Neh. 8:10; Ps. 16:11; Rom. 14:17; Gal. 5:22; 1 Peter 1:8) is “singing and making melody with [the] heart to the Lord” (Eph. 5:19; cf. Col. 3:16). That theme that runs throughout Scripture. Psalm 5:11 declares, “Let all who take refuge in You be glad, let them ever sing for joy”; in Psalm 13:6, the psalmist exults, “I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me”; Psalm 30:4 exhorts, “Sing praise to the Lord, you His godly ones”; and Psalm 92:1 affirms that “it is good to give thanks to the Lord and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High” (cf. v. 4; 7:17; 9:2, 11; 18:49; 27:6; 28:7; 33:1–3; 40:3; 47:6–7; 57:7; 59:16–17; 61:8; 63:7; 66:2; 68:4; 69:30; 71:22–23; 75:9; 81:1; 84:2; 89:1; 90:14; 95:1; 96:1–2; 98:1; 104:33; 105:2; 108:1, 3; 119:54, 72; 132:9, 16; 135:3; 138:1; 144:9; 146:2; 147:1, 7; 149:1, 3, 5; Ex. 15:1, 21; Judg. 5:3; 2 Sam. 22:50; 1 Kings 4:32; 1 Chron. 16:9, 23; Ezra 3:11; Isa. 12:2, 5; 42:10; Jer. 20:13; Zech. 2:10; Rev. 5:9; 14:3; 15:3–4).In addition to those exhortations to sing praise, the Bible records numerous songs of praise to God. After God miraculously delivered them from the pursuing Egyptians by drowning Pharaoh’s army in the Red Sea, Moses and the Israelites sang a song celebrating that deliverance (Ex. 15:1–21). Deborah and Barak also sang of God’s deliverance of His people, this time from the Canaanite forces led by Sisera (Judg. 5:1–31). At the dedication of the templeall the Levitical singers, Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and their sons and kinsmen, clothed in fine linen, with cymbals, harps and lyres, standing east of the altar, and with them one hundred and twenty priests blowing trumpets in unison when the trumpeters and the singers were to make themselves heard with one voice to praise and to glorify the Lord, and when they lifted up their voice accompanied by trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and when they praised the Lord saying, “He indeed is good for His lovingkindness is everlasting,” then the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God. (2 Chron. 5:12–14)Hannah sang a song of praise to the Lord for delivering her from the stigma of barrenness (1 Sam. 2:1–10). The book of Psalms, Israel’s hymn book, is filled with songs celebrating the delivering, saving, redeeming acts of God toward His people. The book of Revelation records songs of praise sung in heaven (5:9–10; 15:3–4).In the first two chapters of his gospel, Luke records five tributes of praise: those of Elizabeth (1:41–45), Mary (1:46–55), Zacharias (1:67–79), the angels who announced Christ’s birth (2:13–14), and Simeon (2:25–32). And though her words were not recorded the devout “prophetess, Anna” (2:36), who “never left the temple, serving night and day with fastings and prayers” (v. 37), gave “thanks to God [for the infant Jesus], and continued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem” (v. 38). We have no information as to whether they were ever sung, or intended to be sung, but they were clearly outbursts of praise.Verses 67–79 of chapter 1 comprise the third of those five anthems, that of Zacharias. Mary’s praise, the Magnificat, emphasized personal salvation; Zacharias’s praise, known as the Benedictus (from the first word in the Latin Vulgate), focuses on collective salvation. It is a tribute of praise to God for the salvation of sinners, and, therefore, omits any mention of divine judgment. As was fitting for a priest, who devoted his life to the study and teaching of the law, Zacharias’s praise, like Mary’s, was deeply rooted in the Old Testament. It focused especially on the three great covenants: the Davidic, Abrahamic, and New covenants, and thus is a major bridge from the Old Testament to the New. Zacharias’s words plainly reveal that Christianity is not a new religion, but rather the fulfillment of everything promised in the Old Testament through the power and work of the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.Zacharias’s outburst of praise and worship was prompted by the astounding events that had just taken place. Briefly summarizing, about nine months earlier the angel Gabriel had appeared to Zacharias while he was ministering in the temple. Gabriel made the stunning announcement that Zacharias and Elizabeth, who were barren and well past childbearing age, would nevertheless have a child—and not just any child, but the forerunner of the Messiah. When Zacharias’s skeptical reply revealed his lack of faith, he became, at Gabriel’s word, deaf and unable to speak. But Elizabeth became pregnant, just as God had promised through Gabriel. Eight days after she gave birth to their son, Zacharias was asked what to name him. When he wrote emphatically, “His name is John” (Luke 1:63; cf. v. 13), “at once his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he began to speak in praise of God” (v. 64). Zacharias’s Benedictus in verses 68–79 is an expression of that praise.But Zacharias’s song was not merely a reflection of his understandable joy at becoming a father when all hope seemed to have long vanished. It expressed the far more significant truth that the redemption God promised in the Old Testament was about to be accomplished. Zacharias’s son, John, would be the forerunner announcing the coming Messiah, through whom God would deliver Israel and fulfill His covenants. Those promises and covenants were, no doubt, part of his teaching through the years, so he was very familiar with the texts of the Old Testament that contain them. That fact becomes obvious as his praise unfolds. It is with three of those covenants that Zacharias’s reflections are chiefly concerned.There are six covenants in the Old Testament that are specifically referred to by that term. Three of them, the Noahic (Gen. 9:9–17), Mosaic (Ex. 19:5; 24:7–8; 34:27–28; Deut. 4:13), and the Priestly (Num. 25:10–13) covenants, are non-salvific; eternal, spiritual salvation is not in view in any of them. The other three covenants, the Davidic, Abrahamic, and New, do relate to salvation. The Davidic covenant is universal; it involves the eternal rule of Jesus Christ over all. The Abrahamic covenant is national; it designates God’s promised blessing of Israel. The New covenant is personal; it refers to God forgiving sin in the lives of individuals. Of course no one will enter into the full blessings of the Davidic and Abrahamic covenants apart from the salvation provided in the New covenant.It was important for Luke to include this anthem of praise at the outset of his gospel story since, as noted above, it inseparably links Christianity to the Old Testament salvation covenants. More specifically, the coming of Messiah’s forerunner, John the Baptist, announced the fulfillment of God’s covenant promise of redemption through the Messiah, Jesus Christ.Like his wife (1:41) and son (1:15) before him, Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit. The divine power of the Spirit of God came upon him so that he prophesied. The verb translated prophesied (prophēteuō) means, “to speak forth,” “to proclaim and expound God’s Word.” Zacharias was filled with and inspired by the Holy Spirit so that what he spoke was the very Word of God.Zacharias’s introductory phrase, “Blessed be the Lord God,” was a common way to introduce praise in the Old Testament (e.g., Gen. 9:26; 24:27; Ex. 18:10; Ruth 4:14; 1 Sam. 25:32, 39; 2 Sam. 18:28; 1 Kings 1:48; 8:15, 56; 1 Chron. 16:36; 29:10; Ezra 7:27; Pss. 28:6; 31:21; 41:13; 66:20; 68:19; 72:18–19; 89:52; 106:48; 113:2; 124:6; 135:21; Dan. 2:19–20; cf. Luke 2:28; Rom. 1:25; 2 Cor. 1:3; Eph. 1:3; 1 Peter 1:3).Zacharias rightly viewed God’s plan of redemption as the unfolding of His promises to Israel. The Lord reminded a Samaritan woman that “salvation is from the Jews” (John 4:22), while Paul wrote that to the “Israelites … [belong] the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, [and] whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever” (Rom. 9:4–5).Zacharias praised God first because He had visited His people. The concept of God visiting His people, whether for judgment (cf. Ex. 32:34; Job 35:15) or for blessing (cf. Ruth 1:6; 1 Sam. 2:21; Jer. 29:10) is a familiar Old Testament theme. Heaven had come down to earth; the supernatural had invaded the natural; God was working out His eternal plan.Specifically, Zacharias glorified God because He had accomplished redemption for His people (cf. 2:38; 24:21). Lutrōsis (redemption) and its related terms comprise one of the word groups used in the New Testament to express the rich theological truth of salvation. It refers to the payment of a price to release someone from bondage. (Another word group, agoradzō and its related terms, adds the idea of ownership, that God redeems sinners for Himself.) Redemption frees sinners from slavery to sin (John 8:34; Rom. 6:6, 17, 20), the curse of the law (Gal. 3:13; 4:5), the sinful ways of fallen men (1 Cor. 7:23), false religion (Gal. 4:3), and Satan, who wielded the power of death (Heb. 2:14–15) subject to God’s will (Job 2:6). The purchase price paid to redeem the elect was the sacrificial death of the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom. 3:24; 1 Cor. 1:30; Eph. 1:7; Col. 1:14; Titus 2:14; Heb. 9:12; 1 Peter 1:18–19).When Zacharias spoke these words, redemption had long been granted, but the covenant that secured it had not been ratified. His son, Messiah’s forerunner, was only eight days old. And the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ, was not even born yet. But Zacharias was so certain that God would do what He had promised that he spoke of redemption as if it had already taken place. He knew that the birth of his son, John, signaled that God was about to visit His people and bring the provision that made salvation possible.The people of Israel fervently longed for Messiah to come and deliver them from their bondage to Rome, as God had delivered their ancestors from slavery in Egypt (cf. Ps. 106). They viewed their deliverance primarily in earthly, political terms, expecting Messiah to establish His earthly kingdom and fulfill the promised blessings to David and Abraham. They overlooked the reality that those blessings would not be fulfilled apart from the forgiveness of sin provided in the New covenant. Sadly, when John and Jesus preached the necessity of that personal salvation, the majority of the people rejected their message. Zacharias, of course, had no way of knowing that would happen, and rejoiced as he saw the day of redemption dawning.Zacharias described redemption as God’s raising up a horn of salvation. That picturesque Old Testament expression (cf. 1 Sam. 2:10; 2 Sam. 22:3; Pss. 18:2; 89:17, 24; 92:10; 112:9; 132:17; 148:14; Mic. 4:13) spoke of power to conquer and kill, like that of a large, horned beast. Here Zacharias used it to refer to the Messiah, picturing Him as a powerful animal, who would lower His horns, drive out His enemies, and deliver His people.This was the greatest moment in Israel’s history, the culmination of all redemptive hope and anticipation. And at the center of that monumental moment in the unfolding saga of redemption was a common, ordinary priest from a small, insignificant village. As befits a man steeped in the Old Testament, Zacharias’s anthem of praise considers first the Davidic covenant, revealing its background, promise, and fulfillment.The Background of the Davidic Covenantin the house of David His servant (1:69b)Zacharias knew that the Old Testament clearly taught that Messiah would be from the house of David. Through Jeremiah the prophet, God said, “ ‘Behold, the days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; and He will reign as king and act wisely and do justice and righteousness in the land’ ” (Jer. 23:5). In Jeremiah 33:15, He repeated that promise: “In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth.” In addition, Isaiah 11:1 and 10 speak of Messiah as a descendant of David’s father, Jesse (cf. Rom. 15:12), while Psalm 132:17 refers to Messiah as “the horn of David” (“Mine anointed”; cf. Ps. 2:2).Zacharias would also have known that Jesus’ mother, Mary, was of the line of David. She had stayed with him and Elizabeth for three months and had undoubtedly told them of Gabriel’s promise to her: “Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David” (1:31–32). Since she was a descendant of David (see the discussion of 3:23–38 in chapter 21 of this volume), Mary passed the royal bloodline to Jesus.David, God’s servant (cf. 2 Sam. 3:18; 7:5, 8; 1 Kings 8:66; 11:13, 38; 14:8; Pss. 18:1; 36:1; 89:3; Jer. 33:21–22), the man after God’s own heart (1 Sam. 13:14), and the “sweet psalmist of Israel” (2 Sam. 23:1), was arguably Israel’s greatest king. The kingdom of Israel began under his predecessor, Saul, and declined under his successor, Solomon, splitting shortly after the latter’s death. It was the fervent hope and expectation of the Jewish people that Messiah would fulfill the Davidic covenant and restore the kingdom of Israel to its former glory.The Promise of the Davidic Covenantas He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from of old (1:70)In the closing decade of his forty-year reign David, having finished building his palace, wanted to build a temple to house the ark of the covenant. Accordingly, “the king said to Nathan the prophet, ‘See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells within tent curtains’ ” (2 Sam. 7:2). What David had in mind sounded good to Nathan so he gave the project his blessing: “Nathan said to the king, ‘Go, do all that is in your mind, for the Lord is with you’ ” (v. 3). But neither Nathan nor David had consulted God, who had something else in mind:But in the same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, saying, “Go and say to My servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Are you the one who should build Me a house to dwell in? For I have not dwelt in a house since the day I brought up the sons of Israel from Egypt, even to this day; but I have been moving about in a tent, even in a tabernacle. Wherever I have gone with all the sons of Israel, did I speak a word with one of the tribes of Israel, which I commanded to shepherd My people Israel, saying, ‘Why have you not built Me a house of cedar?’ ” ’ ” (vv. 4–7)Instead of David building a house for God, God would build a house for David:“Now therefore, thus you shall say to My servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, “I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, to be ruler over My people Israel. I have been with you wherever you have gone and have cut off all your enemies from before you; and I will make you a great name, like the names of the great men who are on the earth. I will also appoint a place for My people Israel and will plant them, that they may live in their own place and not be disturbed again, nor will the wicked afflict them any more as formerly, even from the day that I commanded judges to be over My people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies. The Lord also declares to you that the Lord will make a house for you.” ’ ” (vv. 8–11)Those verses record God’s irrevocable, unconditional covenant promise to David and his household (though it is not called a covenant here, it is in 2 Sam. 23:5). God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets concerning this covenant repeatedly in the Old Testament; it has been estimated that more than forty other passages are directly related to these verses (e.g., Pss. 89; 110; 132). Isaiah alone has much to say about the future Davidic kingdom that will be ruled by the Messiah (cf. the discussion of 2 Sam. 7:12–13 below). According to Isaiah’s prophecy the Lord will restore the faithful remnant of Israel to the land to inhabit the kingdom. He will defeat all of Israel’s enemies, providing protection for His people. In the kingdom, Israel will enjoy great prosperity of many kinds. The city of Jerusalem will rise to world preeminence. Israel will be the center of world attention, and her mission will be to glorify the Lord. Gentiles in the kingdom will receive blessing through the channel of faithful Israel. Worldwide peace and righteousness will prevail under the rule of the Prince of Peace. Moral and spiritual conditions in the kingdom will reach their highest plane since the fall of Adam. Governmental leadership will be superlative with the Messiah, the perfect dictator who is just and true, in charge. Righteousness will prevail as the King swiftly judges overt sin. Humans will enjoy long lives; those who die at one hundred years of age will be considered mere youths. Knowledge of the Lord will be universal. The world of nature will enjoy a great renewal. Wild animals will be tame; the lion will lie down with the lamb, and children play with poisonous snakes. Sorrow and mourning will not exist. Finally, an eternal kingdom as part of God’s new creation will follow the millennial kingdom. (For further information, including verse references for the above points, see the chart “Isaiah’s Description of Israel’s Future Kingdom” in John MacArthur, author and gen. ed., The MacArthur Study Bible [Nashville: Thomas Nelson, various publication dates], in the notes to Isa. 65.)The Fulfillment of the Davidic Covenantsalvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us; (1:71)Like many Old Testament predictions, the Lord’s promise to David in 2 Samuel 7:12–14 has both a near and a distant fulfillment. In the short term, David’s descendant, whose kingdom God promised to establish (v. 12) was his son Solomon. He was granted the privilege of building the temple that was denied to David (v. 13a).But neither Solomon’s kingdom nor the temple he built were to last. As Solomon grew old, he sank deeper and deeper into sin. As a result, after his death the kingdom split into two kingdoms: the northern kingdom of Israel, and the southern kingdom of Judah. Eventually, after centuries of rebellion and disobedience, Israel was destroyed by the Assyrians (722 b.c.). Little more than a century later Judah fell to the Babylonians, who in 586 b.c. destroyed Solomon’s magnificent temple.God’s covenant promise, however, did not fail. It extends to the One greater than Solomon (Luke 11:31)—the Lord Jesus Christ. It is His kingdom that God promised to establish forever (2 Sam. 7:13, 16). He will one day return to establish His earthly kingdom in fulfillment of the promise made to David, and “there will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore” (Isa. 9:7).It was that messianic kingdom, with its hope and expectation of salvation from Israel’s enemies, and from the hand of all who hate the Jewish people (cf. Ps. 106:10), that elicited Zacharias’s praise. As noted above, he believed the kingdom’s arrival was imminent (as indeed did Jesus’ own disciples, even after His resurrection [Acts 1:6]); he knew that his son was the forerunner of the Messiah, and that Mary was pregnant with the Messiah. Zacharias did not foresee that the unthinkable would happen—that Israel would reject and execute her King.But Israel’s disobedience cannot nullify the promises of God (Rom. 3:1–3). The King will one day return to establish His earthly kingdom, just as God promised David. In that day the remnant of Israel will come to repentance and faith and, says the Lord, “will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn” (Zech. 12:10). They will cry out joyously, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” (Matt. 23:39). “In that day,” Zechariah prophesied, “His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which is in front of Jerusalem on the east” (Zech. 14:4). The most detailed description of the triumphant return of Jesus Christ to judge His enemies and establish His earthly kingdom is found in Revelation 19:11–21:And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “King of kings, and Lord of lords.” Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in midheaven, “Come, assemble for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great.” And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies assembled to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. And the beast was seized, and with him the false prophet who performed the signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image; these two were thrown alive into the lake of fire which burns with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh.The hope of Zacharias and the future remnant of Jews, as well as all true believers, is sure and will certainly come to pass. God will not forget His covenant with David. The redeemed will experience the blessed joy of serving and worshiping the King during the millennial kingdom and the eternal kingdom that will follow it. Only then will the fervent longing of the children of Israel for salvation from their enemies, and from the hand of all who hate them be realized.
68 The NIV uses “praise” to translate eulogētos (GK 2329) here. The word eulogētos can refer both to a human being on whom God has showered his goodness (i.e., “blessed,” v. 42) and to God, to whom we return thanks for that goodness (i.e., “praise”; cf. Robert J. Ledogar, Acknowledgment: Praise-verbs in the Early Greek Anaphora [Roma: Herder, 1967]). A form of the same word occurs in v. 64 (eulogeō, “praising”). It is as though vv. 68–79 provide the content of the praise expressed in the earlier verse (v. 64). “Israel” is paralleled by “his people” in vv. 68, 77, carrying along the promise of v. 17 (see comments there).The action centers in two verbs: “has come” and “has redeemed.” The first is from the verb episkeptomai (GK 2170). In secular Greek it means simply “to look at, reflect on,” or “to visit” (often in a charitable way, such as a doctor’s visiting the sick; cf. Mt 25:36, 43; Jas 1:27). The element of special concern is deepened to the spiritual level in the LXX’s use of the word. A particular example is that of God’s “visiting” people in grace or in judgment (Ex 4:31; Zec 10:3; cf. TDNT 2:599–605). The idea of God’s graciously “visiting” or “coming” to his people in the sense of vv. 68, 78 appears also in 7:16. In these three verses, as well as in Acts 15:14, where episkeptomai is translated “showed concern,” the word “people” also occurs. Tragically, Jerusalem did not recognize the day of her “visitation” (Lk 19:44; NIV, “the time of God’s coming”).The second verb, “redeemed,” represents two Greek words: epoiēsen lytrōsin (“accomplished redemption”). The idea of redemption runs throughout Scripture, with the exodus being the great OT example of rescue from enemies and captivity. Luke 24:21 shows the expectation Jesus’ followers had that he would do a similar work of freeing God’s people. Luke, though committed to the universal application of the gospel, includes these words of redemption that apply especially to Israel (see esp. v. 69). This not only reflects his emphasis on the Jewish roots of Christianity; it also underlines the sociopolitical aspects of redemption foremost in the minds of Zechariah’s contemporaries.
68. Blessed (be) the Lord, the God of Israel,Because he has looked after his people and brought about redemption for them …Zechariah begins with a doxology. He praises Jehovah, Israel’s covenant God, for his concern about, and saving intervention in, the affairs of his people. He says that God has “looked after” them. Here he uses the same verb that occurs in Matt. 25:36, “I was sick, and you looked after me.” See also the note on this verse on page 131.He adds, “and brought about redemption for his people.” Is this redemption political? Is it, for example, deliverance from bondage to a foreign oppressor? The decision will have to be made in the light of the context. Verse 71, taken by itself, affords little help, for the question remains, “Are these enemies and haters political or spiritual?” Verse 77, however, states, “to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins.” See also verses 74, 75: “that we … should serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness,” and verse 79, “to guide our feet into the path of peace.” In such a context the “redemption” to which verse 68 refers would seem to be of a spiritual nature; at least to be basically and predominantly spiritual; probably redemption from Satan, sin, and all the consequences.Another approach to the answer would be to ask, “What does the same word redemption (Greek lutrōsis) mean in the only other New Testament passages in which it occurs?” In Luke 2:38 we read, “Now coming up at that very hour, Anna was … speaking to all those who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.” Must we believe that the emphasis of this aged and devout child of God and of those whom she addressed was on deliverance from the Roman yoke? Or from Herod’s cruelties perhaps? Was it not rather on restoration to favor with God? And when the inspired author of the book of Hebrews states that Jesus “entered once for all into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption” (9:12), did he not add “through his own blood”?We can reach no other conclusion but that Zechariah had in mind salvation through Christ. If to some this explanation ascribes to Zechariah too high a Christology, the answer is that this priest was “filled with the Holy Spirit” as he spoke these words.
 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2009). Luke 1–5 (pp. 93–101). Chicago: Moody Publishers. Liefeld, W. L., & Pao, D. W. (2007). Luke. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Luke–Acts (Revised Edition) (Vol. 10, pp. 70–71). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan. Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953–2001). Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke (Vol. 11, pp. 123–124). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.