Luke 1:18-20 & 34-38 (NIVUK)
18 Zechariah asked the angel, ‘How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well on in years.’
19 The angel said to him, ‘I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. 20 And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their appointed time.’
34 ‘How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’
35 The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.’
38 ‘I am the Lord’s servant,’ Mary answered. ‘May your word to me be fulfilled.’ Then the angel left her.
In both these situations, the angel Gabriel has amazing news of a miraculous pregnancy and birth. That’s not all though, the angel has something to say about the nature of God’s words too. God’s words will come about at the right time, and as described, because no word from God will fail. Is he implying that God’s words come about because they are accurate and true, or because they have inherent power? I suspect it is a bit of both. God is truth and all-knowing, and God speaks and a world is created. And isn’t this just what we see happening in Jesus, the Word become flesh? Truth and power embodied in our Saviour.
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.
(Ps. 19:14 NIVUK)