I take hope from the fact that, despite his previous lack of faith at Gabriel's words (Pericope 6), the priest Zechariah could still be filled with the Holy Spirit and speak forth God's word, prophesying John's future role in giving the knowledge of salvation. Zechariah's gaze is still fixed on the political deliverance of Israel: twice he speaks of being saved or delivered from their enemies. This correct but limited understanding about the Messiah's purpose continues throughout Jesus' ministry: John himself latered struggled in his imprisonment, wondering whether Jesus was really the Messiah (Pericope 89, which includes Luke.7.18-23 as a source).
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