Canticle of Zechariah

Blessed be the Lord,
The God of Israel;
He has come to His people and set them free.

He has raised up for us a mighty Savior,
Born of the house of His servant David.

Through His holy prophets He promised of old
That He would save us from our enemies,
From the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers
And to remember His holy Covenant.

This was the oath He swore to our father Abraham:
To set us free from the hands of our enemies,
Free to worship Him without fear,
Holy and righteous in His sight
All the days of our life.

You, My child shall be called
The prophet of the Most High,
For you will go before the Lord to prepare His way,
To give his people knowledge of salvation
By the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our Lord
The dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness
And the shadow of death,
And to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father,
and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning.
is now, and will be forever.


It occurred to me this morning that this canticle is a short history of salvation. I have written about this canticle in other places on this blog, but I don’t think I have recognized this important fact. The canticle starts by saying that God has remembered his promise of a savior from Genesis and then takes us through the promise made to Abraham and the patriarchs all the way to John the Baptist. Then the final stanza is a song of joy at what God has accomplished.

March 28, 2017 I have wondered why there seemed to be a repeat about God’s promises. I realized this morning that the promises are not repeated. The first mention of the promises is reflected from the prophets, but then the promise to Abraham is recited. It seems just a small thing, but it is not. Our Father is a “Father who keeps His promises.”