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1 Forasmuch as many haue taken in hande to set foorth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely beleeued among vs,

2 Euen as they deliuered them vnto vs, which from the beginning were eye-witnesses, & ministers of the word:

3 It seemed good to me also, hauing had perfect vnderstanding of things from the very first, to write vnto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

4 That thou mightest know the certainetie of those things wherein thou hast bene instructed.

5 There was in the dayes of Herode the king of Iudea, a certaine Priest, named Zacharias, of the course of Abia, and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.

6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the Commandements and ordinances of the Lord, blamelesse.

7 And they had no childe, because that Elizabeth was barren, and they both were now well striken in yeeres.

8 And it came to passe, that while he executed the Priests office before God in the order of his course,

9 According to the custome of the Priests office, his lot was to burne incense when he went into the Temple of the Lord.

10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying without, at the time of incense.

11 And there appeared vnto him an Angel of the Lord, standing on the right side of the Altar of incense.

12 And when Zacharias sawe him, hee was troubled, and feare fell vpon him.

13 But the Angel said vnto him, Feare not, Zacharias, for thy prayer is heard, and thy wife Elizabeth shall beare thee a sonne, and thou shalt call his name Iohn.

14 And thou shalt haue ioy and gladnesse, and many shall reioyce at his birth:

15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shal drinke neither wine, nor strong drinke, and he shall bee filled with the holy Ghost, euen from his mothers wombe.

16 And many of the children of Israel shall hee turne to the Lord their God.

17 And hee shall goe before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turne the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisedome of the iust, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

18 And Zacharias said vnto the Angel, Whereby shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife well striken in yeeres.

19 And the Angel answering, said vnto him, I am Gabriel that stand in the presence of God, and am sent to speake vnto thee, and to shew thee these glad tidings.

20 And behold, thou shalt be dumbe, and not able to speake, vntill the day that these things shall bee performed, because thou beleeuest not my words, which shall bee fulfilled in their season.

21 And the people waited for Zacharias, and maruelled that hee taried so long in the temple.

22 And when he came out, he could not speake vnto them: and they perceiued that he had seene a vision in the temple: for he beckened vnto them, and remained speechlesse.

23 And it came to passe, that as soone as the dayes of his ministration were accomplished, he departed to his owne house.

24 And after those dayes his wife Elizabeth conceiued, and hid her selfe fiue moneths, saying,

25 Thus hath the Lord dealt with me in the dayes wherein he looked on me, to take away my reproch among men.

26 And in the sixt moneth, the Angel Gabriel was sent from God, vnto a citie of Galilee, named Nazareth,

27 To a virgine espoused to a man whose name was Ioseph, of the house of Dauid, and the virgins name was Marie.

28 And the Angel came in vnto her, and said, Haile thou that art highly fauoured, the Lord is with thee: Blessed art thou among women.

29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her minde what maner of salutation this should be.

30 And the Angel said vnto her, Feare not, Marie, for thou hast found fauour with God.

31 And behold, thou shalt conceiue in thy wombe, and bring forth a sonne, and shalt call his name Iesus.

32 He shall be great, and shall be called the sonne of the Highest, and the Lord God shall giue vnto him the throne of his father Dauid.

33 And hee shall reigne ouer the house of Iacob for euer, and of his kingdome there shall be no end.

34 Then said Marie vnto the Angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?

35 And the Angel answered and said vnto her, The holy Ghost shall come vpon thee, and the power of the Highest shall ouershadow thee. Therefore also that holy thing which shall bee borne of thee, shall bee called the sonne of God.

36 And behold, thy cousin Elizabeth, she hath also conceiued a sonne in her old age, and this is the sixt moneth with her, who was called barren.

37 For with God no thing shall be vnpossible.

38 And Marie said, Behold the handmaide of the Lord, be it vnto me according to thy word: and the Angel departed from her.

39 And Marie arose in those dayes, and went into the hill countrey with haste, into a citie of Iuda,

40 And entred into the house of Zacharias, and saluted Elizabeth.

41 And it came to passe that when Elizabeth heard the salutation of Marie, the babe leaped in her wombe, and Elizabeth was filled with the holy Ghost.

42 And she spake out with a loud voyce, and saide, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruite of thy wombe.

43 And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to mee?

44 For loe, assoone as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine eares, the babe leaped in my wombe for ioy.

45 And blessed is she that beleeued, for there shalbe a performance of those things, which were told her from the Lord.

46 And Marie said, My soule doth magnifie the Lord.

47 And my spirit hath reioyced in God my sauiour.

48 For hee hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for behold, from hencefoorth all generations shall call me blessed.

49 For he that is mighty hath done to mee great things, and holy is his Name.

50 And his mercy is on them that feare him, from generation to generation.

51 Hee hath shewed strength with his arme, he hath scattered the proud, in the imagination of their hearts.

52 He hath put downe the mighty from their seates, and exalted them of low degree.

53 Hee hath filled the hungry with good things, and the rich hee hath sent emptie away.

54 Hee hath holpen his seruant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,

55 As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for euer.

56 And Mary abode with her about three moneths, and returned to her owne house.

57 Now Elizabeths full time came, that shee should be deliuered, and shee brought foorth a sonne.

58 And her neighbours and her cousins heard how the Lord had shewed great mercy vpon her, and they reioyced with her.

59 And it came to passe that on the eight day they came to circumcise the childe, and they called him Zacharias, after the name of his father.

60 And his mother answered, and said, Not so, but he shalbe called Iohn.

61 And they said vnto her, There is none of thy kinred that is called by this name.

62 And they made signes to his father, how he would haue him called.

63 And he asked for a writing table, and wrote, saying, His name is Iohn: and they marueiled all.

64 And his mouth was opened immediatly, and his tongue loosed, and hee spake, and praised God.

65 And feare came on all that dwelt round about them, and all these sayings were noised abroad thorowout all the hill countrey of Iudea.

66 And all they that had heard them, layde them vp in their hearts, saying, What maner of childe shal this be? And the hand of the Lord was with him.

67 And his father Zacharias was filled with the holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying,

68 Blessed bee the Lord God of Israel, for hee hath visited and redeemed his people,

69 And hath raised vp an horne of saluation for vs, in the house of his seruant Dauid,

70 As he spake by the mouth of his holy Prophets, which haue bene since the world began:

71 That wee should be saued from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate vs,

72 To performe the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy Couenant,

73 The oath which he sware to our father Abraham,

74 That hee would grant vnto vs, that wee beeing deliuered out of the hands of our enemies, might serue him without feare,

75 In holinesse and righteousnesse before him, all the dayes of our life.

76 And thou childe shalt bee called the Prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt goe before the face of the Lord to prepare his wayes.

77 To giue knowledge of saluation vnto his people, by the remission of their sinnes,

78 Through the tender mercy of our God, whereby the day-spring from on high hath visited vs,

79 To giue light to them that sit in darknes, and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.

80 And the childe grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and was in the deserts, till the day of his shewing vnto Israel.

Viewing the original 1611 KJV with archaic English spelling
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Commentary for Luke 1

This evangelist is generally supposed to have been a physician, and a companion of the apostle Paul. The style of his writings, and his acquaintance with the Jewish rites and usages, sufficiently show that he was a Jew, while his knowledge of the Greek language and his name, speak his Gentile origin. He is first mentioned #Ac 16:10,11|, as with Paul at Troas, whence he attended him to Jerusalem, and was with him in his voyage, and in his imprisonment at Rome. This Gospel appears to be designed to supersede many defective and unauthentic narratives in circulation, and to give a genuine and inspired account of the life, miracles, and doctrines of our Lord, learned from those who heard and witnessed his discourses and miracles.The Preface. (1-4) Zacharias and Elisabeth. (5-25) Christ's birth announced. (26-38) Interview of Mary and Elisabeth. (39-56) The birth of John the Baptist. (57-66) The song of Zacharias. (67-80)1-4. Luke will not write of things about which Christians may safely differ from one another, and hesitate within themselves; but the things which are, and ought to be surely believed. The doctrine of Christ is what the wisest and best of men have ventured their souls upon with confidence and satisfaction. And the great events whereon our hopes depend, have been recorded by those who were from the beginning eye-witnesses and ministers of the word, and who were perfected in their understanding of them through Divine inspiration.

5-25 The father and mother of John the Baptist were sinners as all are, and were justified and saved in the same way as others; but they were eminent for piety and integrity. They had no children, and it could not be expected that Elisabeth should have any in her old age. While Zacharias was burning incense in the temple, the whole multitude of the people were praying without. All the prayers we offer up to God, are acceptable and successful only by Christ's intercession in the temple of God above. We cannot expect an interest therein if we do not pray, and pray with our spirits, and are not earnest in prayer. Nor can we expect that the best of our prayers should gain acceptance, and bring an answer of peace, but through the mediation of Christ, who ever lives, making intercession. The prayers Zacharias often made, received an answer of peace. Prayers of faith are filed in heaven, and are not forgotten. Prayers made when we were young and entering into the world, may be answered when we are old and going out of the world. Mercies are doubly sweet that are given in answer to prayer. Zacharias shall have a son in his old age, who shall be instrumental in the conversion of many souls to God, and preparing them to receive the gospel of Christ. He shall go before Him with courage, zeal, holiness, and a mind dead to earthly interests and pleasures. The disobedient and rebellious would be brought back to the wisdom of their righteous forefathers, or rather, brought to attend to the wisdom of that Just One who was coming among them. Zacharias heard all that the angel said; but his unbelief spake. In striking him dumb, God dealt justly with him, because he had objected against God's word. We may admire the patience of God towards us. God dealt kindly with him, for thus he prevented his speaking any more distrustful, unbelieving words. Thus also God confirmed his faith. If by the rebukes we are under for our sin, we are brought to give the more credit to the word of God, we have no reason to complain. Even real believers are apt to dishonour God by unbelief; and their mouths are stopped in silence and confusion, when otherwise they would have been praising God with joy and gratitude. In God's gracious dealings with us we ought to observe his gracious regards to us. He has looked on us with compassion and favour, and therefore has thus dealt with us.

26-38 We have here an account of the mother of our Lord; though we are not to pray to her, yet we ought to praise God for her. Christ must be born miraculously. The angel's address means only, Hail, thou that art the especially chosen and favoured of the Most High, to attain the honour Jewish mothers have so long desired. This wondrous salutation and appearance troubled Mary. The angel then assured her that she had found favour with God, and would become the mother of a son whose name she should call Jesus, the Son of the Highest, one in a nature and perfection with the Lord God. JESUS! the name that refreshes the fainting spirits of humbled sinners; sweet to speak and sweet to hear, Jesus, a Saviour! We know not his riches and our own poverty, therefore we run not to him; we perceive not that we are lost and perishing, therefore a Saviour is a word of little relish. Were we convinced of the huge mass of guilt that lies upon us, and the wrath that hangs over us for it, ready to fall upon us, it would be our continual thought, Is the Saviour mine? And that we might find him so, we should trample on all that hinders our way to him. Mary's reply to the angel was the language of faith and humble admiration, and she asked no sign for the confirming her faith. Without controversy, great was the mystery of godliness, God manifest in the flesh, #1Ti 3:16|. Christ's human nature must be produced so, as it was fit that should be which was to be taken into union with the Divine nature. And we must, as Mary here, guide our desires by the word of God. In all conflicts, let us remember that with God nothing is impossible; and as we read and hear his promises, let us turn them into prayers, Behold the willing servant of the Lord; let it be unto me according to thy word.

39-56 It is very good for those who have the work of grace begun in their souls, to communicate one to another. On Mary's arrival, Elisabeth was conscious of the approach of her who was to be the mother of the great Redeemer. At the same time she was filled with the Holy Ghost, and under his influence declared that Mary and her expected child were most blessed and happy, as peculiarly honoured of and dear to the Most High God. Mary, animated by Elisabeth's address, and being also under the influence of the Holy Ghost, broke out into joy, admiration, and gratitude. She knew herself to be a sinner who needed a Saviour, and that she could no otherwise rejoice in God than as interested in his salvation through the promised Messiah. Those who see their need of Christ, and are desirous of righteousness and life in him, he fills with good things, with the best things; and they are abundantly satisfied with the blessings he gives. He will satisfy the desires of the poor in spirit who long for spiritual blessings, while the self-sufficient shall be sent empty away.

57-66 In these verses we have an account of the birth of John the Baptist, and the great joy among all the relations of the family. He shall be called Johanan, or "Gracious," because he shall bring in the gospel of Christ, wherein God's grace shines most bright. Zacharias recovered his speech. Unbelief closed his mouth, and believing opened it again: he believers, therefore he speaks. When God opens our lips, our mouths must show forth his praise; and better be without speech, than not use it in praising God. It is said, The hand of the Lord was working with John. God has ways of working on children in their infancy, which we cannot account for. We should observe the dealings of God, and wait the event.

67-80 Zacharias uttered a prophecy concerning the kingdom and salvation of the Messiah. The gospel brings light with it; in it the day dawns. In John the Baptist it began to break, and increased apace to the perfect day. The gospel is discovering; it shows that about which we were utterly in the dark; it is to give light to those that sit in darkness, the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. It is reviving; it brings light to those that sit in the shadow of death, as condemned prisoners in the dungeon. It is directing; it is to guide our feet in the way of peace, into that way which will bring us to peace at last, #Ro 3:17|. John gave proofs of strong faith, vigorous and holy affections, and of being above the fear and love of the world. Thus he ripened for usefulness; but he lived a retired life, till he came forward openly as the forerunner of the Messiah. Let us follow peace with all men, as well as seek peace with God and our own consciences. And if it be the will of God that we live unknown to the world, still let us diligently seek to grow strong in the grace of Jesus Christ.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Luke 1

  • Mark verrell

  • Maggie Bazaar for verse 37
    The world will pass away but his word will remain and rain come to water the earth and plants sprouts so does his word will not return void .so indeed nothing is impossible with God
  • Joan Minja for verse 45
    God speaks to us through his Word, and for us to see the manifestations of his word in our daily life, we have to believe. Faith can move mountains and it is profound to us as believers! there shall be a performance of those things, only of we believe! Jesus is Lord!!!
  • Anita
    Why was Zachariah punish for the question he asked when Mary had the same question?
  • Cynnee
    When we sometimes worry about our lives we should remember that with God all things are possible.

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