Marriages are struggling like I’ve said before more than ever before and because of that God put it on my heart to look at 25 couples in the bible showing what attributes they brought to their marriage. We’ve already looked at Boaz and Ruth, so today we are going to look at the qualities that Zechariah and Elizabeth brought to the marriage table as a husband and as a wife and then at the end I’m going to show you just how powerful one attribute they had together was in their marriage. So what kind of qualities did Zechariah bring into his marriage?
1. He was a man dedicated to the Lord. This relationship was very important for his marriage and benefited it greatly.
Luke 1: 5 In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah.
2. He prayed not only for himself or others but for his wife willing to go before the lord on her behalf and she was blessed by it.
Luke 1:13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John.
When I think about the type of husband Zechariah probably was and what he brought to their marriage table this is what comes to mind. Here was a man who was the spiritual leader in his home who was attentive and paid attention to the needs of his wife. He saw Elizabeth’s desire to have a child probably based off their conversations or her actions and he knew one thing he could do for her was to pray for her which shows his love. He was a husband who allowed his wife to speak freely in their marriage without guilt or shame valuing her as important.
1. She was a woman like her husband committed to the Lord and we can see that coming from her family back-ground.
Luke 1: 5-6: His wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. 6 Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly.
2. She was a humble woman who had a heart for others.
Luke 1:41-43: 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! 43 But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
3. She was a thankful woman giving honor to the lord for her blessings.
Luke 1:25 “The Lord has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favor and taken away my disgrace among the people.
4. In order to be chosen to be the mentor of Mary(The mother of Jesus) she had to be a woman of character.
Luke 1:56 Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months and then returned home.
When I think about Elizabeth and what she brought to their marriage table I picture a woman who had her own spiritual relationship with the lord who was grateful for all the things the lord had done for her and her family. She was a woman who spoke openly when the Holy Spirit prompted her to. I believe she was a loving woman who looked out for the well-being of others outside of herself being humble at the same time.
We talked a lot about what they brought to the marriage table already but here’s what really excited me about their story. When it came to naming a son it was common back then to name him after the husband or someone connected to the family line. When it came time to name Elizabeth’s son everyone thought it surely would have been Zechariah. But Elizabeth spoke up immediately and said no his name shall be John. Now that tells me 1. That Elizabeth wasn’t afraid to speak up in their relationship because they had that type of relationship 2. She was totally committed to the prompting of the Lord.
But here’s what’s amazing. When they asked Zechariah what his son name should be he wrote John. Immediately after that something amazing happened. Wait for it!!! Zechariah who had lost his ability to speak because of his earlier disbelief was able to speak. Could it be because of their unity? Was it because of the spiritual unity that they had? At that moment with everyone watching looking for Zechariah to respond to this request that wasn’t standard at that time (probably waiting for him to denounce the name that Elizabeth came up with)they were unified as one for all to see.
Luke 1: 59-64
On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him after his father Zechariah, but his mother spoke up and said, “No! He is to be called John.” They said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who has that name.” Then they made signs to his father, to find out what he would like to name the child. He asked for a writing tablet, and to everyone’s astonishment he wrote, “His name is John.” Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue set free, and he began to speak, praising God.
When you take all these things into consideration to their marriage what can we take from their marriage? There was unity in their marriage and I believe not only in word but spiritually together. They had marriage that was led by God one filled with obedience, a marriage with open communication, marriage that was spiritually unified. They had a marriage that represented the oneness that Genesis 2:24-25 talked about. A marriage that was one flesh (unified) one that was naked (vulnerable) one that felt no shame (without humiliation). So if you take anything from their marriage remember this.
There’s power in a unified marriage but even more power in a spiritually filled unified marriage.
I’ll end with a song about spiritual unity by Celine Dion and Josh Groban (Please keep Celine’s family in your prayers)