The opening chapter of the book of Luke gives us a great lesson that has been overlooked, and yet it is very pertinent to the lives of millions of believers today—the story of Zacharias and Elizabeth.
There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years.
Here we have a model couple, Zacharias and his wife Elizabeth, who were married for years. Elizabeth was the cousin of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Doctor Luke gives us the background of this couple in the Scripture passage just cited. Let’s begin with the husband. Zacharias was a priest of the course of Abia. What does that mean? Albert Barnes' Bible commentary explains:
‘When the priests became so numerous that they could not at once minister at the altar, David divided them into 24 classes or courses, each one of which officiated for a week, 1 Chronicles 24. The class or course (shift) of Abia was the “eighth” in order, 1 Chronicles 24:10. Compare 2 Chronicles 8:14. The word “course” means the same as “class,” or order. The Greek-based word Abia is the same as the Hebrew-based word Abijah.’
Please note that Zacharias the priest was in the eighth course, being in the order of Abia. We know from biblical numerology that eight is the number of new beginning. Second, notice that Luke goes to some trouble to tell us this of Elizabeth: “his wife was of the daughters of Aaron.” She was a direct descendant of Aaron, the first high priest of the Jews. Therefore, they both came from the priesthood family.
Then we are told that this priestly couple was:
- Righteous before God
- Walking in all the commandments of the Lord
- Blameless in the ordinances of the Lord
What a good report to have! They were righteous, walking in all the commandments of the Lord, and blameless—and yet we see that something was not quite right. Luke 1:7 says, “And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years.”
This couple seemed to be perfect in every way. But, they were:
- Righteous, yet barren
- Walking in all the commandments, yet still barren
- Blameless, yet nonetheless barren
- A priest after the order of Abia, yet living a nonproductive life
- A daughter of Aaron the first great high priest, yet sterile
- Both from the priesthood family, yet fruitless
So many believers finds themselves in this same position. Like Zacharias and Elizabeth, many of us have the same testimony—we have been declared righteous and everything should be hunky-dory, but many believers are in the same fruitless boat. Like Zacharias, we, too, have been made priests and kings as the Scriptures reveal in Revelation 1:5-6.
Today many find themselves in the same situation. However the good news is that barrenness can be broken. If Elizabeth, Sarah and Hannah did it then you are next in line to do it. Now when we think of barrenness, most people automatically think of a woman who cannot have a child or of a dry, barren land. But in the Scriptures the term ‘barrenness’ is not limited to the realm of the biological or the landscape. There are different facets and levels of barrenness.
In its simplest definition, barrenness is fruitless labor. That is no matter what you do nothing comes of it. I want you to understand that barrenness is a very aggressive spirit that is under a mandate to keep you grounded and for your life never to take off. It is geared to challenge the very first words of Elohim to humanity.
…And God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion…
You are under a divine mandate to be fruitful meaning to be productive. You were not created to be under restraint or constraint. Fruitfulness is your portion. I want you to break the shackles of barrenness on whatever level it has affected your life. Fruitfulness is a covenant agreement between God and humanity but more specifically with you as His child. As Zacharias and Elizabeth, you too can have a brand new beginning.
This is an excerpt from my powerful book, Exposing and Overcoming The Spirit of Barrenness.
Exposing & Overcoming The Spirit Of Barrenness
When dealing with the spirit of barrenness, you are dealing with the spirit of stagnation and limitation. It seeks to curtail your life, your status, your ministry, your church, your family and your finances. BUT IT CAN BE BROKEN!Details…