The account of Zacharias is inspiring. He and his wife, Elizabeth, prayed to have a son but their prayers were not answered and now they were old in years. We read in the New Testament:
8 And it came to pass, that while he executed the priest’s office before God in the order of his course,
9 According to the custom of the priest’s office, his lot was to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord. (Luke 1:8-9)
If we look into the scriptures (see 1 Chronicles 24:10, Nehemiah 12:4), we learn that Zacharias was of the tribe of Levi. In the Bible Dictionary we read:
The work of ministering in the sanctuary was assigned to this tribe. The Levites are sometimes spoken of as distinct from the priests (1 Kgs. 8:4; Ezra 2:70; John 1:19); sometimes as though all Levites were also priests, “the priests, the Levites”…
So from this we learn that Zacharias was tasked with working for the Lord in the temple and he must have shown some dedication in his life to this duty. If we are unsure of this we can read in Luke 1:6:
6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and
ordinances of the Lord blameless.
Blameless – walking in all commandments. I think already we can take it that Zacharias was diligent in his priesthood duties. This is where we find Zacharias where he is visited by the Angel Gabriel and told of the miracle that was to take place. We know that he is told that his aged wife was to have a child called John. He finds this hard to believe and he is struck dumb for his unbelief.
We might be forgiven for thinking ill of Zacharias for this unbelief. Although, I’m not sure how I would feel if this were to happen to me. However, what stood out most to me was Zacharias’s reaction after this event. He has been visited by an angel, told his wife will now be pregnant with a miracle child, struck dumb as a sign of his unbelief and what does Zacharias do?
23 And it came to pass, that, as soon as the days of his ministration were accomplished,
he departed to his own house. (Luke 1:23)
If I were in Zacharias’s position I would return home. I would want to tell my family, find comfort from the fact that I could not speak and share what marvelous experience just happened to me. However, Zacharias stayed and completed his duty before he then departed to his own house. An example of dedication to the Lord, the Temple and his duty.