Introductions of Faith
As I started reading through Luke in preparation for the upcoming classes at the church in Santa Clara, I was struck by the introductions of Zechariah, Elizabeth, and Mary. We are first introduced to Zechariah and his wife Elizabeth in Luke 1:5 & 6, “In the days of Herod, kind of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord.” What an honor to be introduced to the world in this way! What a first impression! When the angel Gabriel appears to Mary, he greets her by saying, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” Wow! I want to be called “O favored one” and to be told by an angel that the Lord is with me!
Elsewhere in the Scriptures, strong men and women of faith have been given incredible commendations as well by the Holy Spirit. Enoch is said to have “walked with God” (Genesis 5:23, 24). When we are introduced to Noah in Genesis 6:8 & 9, it was said of him, “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord” and “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.” Abraham is called, “a friend of God” (James 2:23). And in Acts 13:22, David is named “a man after God’s heart.” When Paul scribed his letters to the churches, he sent greetings and accolades to various Christians of his time; their names are now immortalized next to descriptions such as “servant of the church” (Phoebe), “fellow workers in Christ Jesus” (Prisca and Aquila), “approved in Christ” (Appeles), and “beloved brother and faithful minister” (Tychicus).
All these titles and descriptions have caused me to reflect on myself and wonder what kind of introduction or greeting would an angel give me? Could I be called righteous, blameless, or favored? Would I be told that the Lord is with me? Am I considered a servant of the church, faithful, beloved, or approved in Christ? When I am presented to God on the Day of Judgment, what will be said of me? How will I be introduced to my Father?
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