What to Say

Read: Luke 1:76-80

To give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins. (v. 77)

Zechariah’s song tells of the mercy and salvation that God offers. Salvation starts with God’s grace. Zechariah, in his song in Luke 1, states that salvation is “because of the tender mercy of our God” (v. 78). You can’t earn salvation by making yourself righteous through good works. Obedience and good works are a response to God’s grace and salvation. First John 4:19 reminds us that “we love because he first loved us.” In response, just like Zechariah, we must also declare God’s goodness to others and the hope we have in Christ.

John the Baptist was influenced by parents who lived out their faith. In fact, there’s a good chance that someone close to you is being influenced by your words and actions. It’s humbling to think that you can be used by God “to give knowledge of salvation to his people” (Luke 1:77). You can communicate the need for repentance and faith (which we will read about in tomorrow’s text and devotional). You, like John’s parents before him and John throughout his ministry, can tell others that God offers salvation through Christ. Each of us must repent of sin, believe in Jesus, and follow him. When we do, God fills us with his Spirit, washes our sin away, and reconciles us to himself. It’s all because of the tender mercy of God. We don’t deserve it and we can’t earn it, but we can humbly receive it.

As you pray, ponder God’s amazing grace, confess your sin, and pray for those who need to find his way of peace.

About the Author

Rev. Steve Petroelje is a specialized transition pastor who serves vacant churches and helps them assess health, pursue missional effectiveness, and conduct a pastoral search process. He is the past-president of the Words of Hope Board of Trustees.

This entry is part 5 of 15 in the series Prepare the Way