Luke 1:5–7 (ESV) “In the days of Herod, king 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. 6 And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. 7 But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.”
Christians need to be careful not think in terms of God dealing with us in a tit-for-tat paradigm. This small section of seemingly unimportant historical information is not to be quickly overlooked.
Simply because Zechariah and Elizabeth had remained devoid of the blessing of children prior to this time – we are not to conclude they were somehow living in disobedience or sin. Nor are we to conclude that God was somehow unjustly withholding. The text tells us just the opposite. Sometimes, we can be serving in the most upright way, and yet God in His love and wisdom may withhold some proper, normal or perceived good. Ours, is to rest in Him. This is a word most especially meant to comfort those who may have long desired a spouse, children of their own, or perhaps even a particular field of service.
Many under such circumstances can be led to think that there must be some sort of sin or defect which prevents their having such blessings. And, while the question is good in that examining our hearts for unrepentant sin is always a useful exercise – nevertheless, one can torture their own soul needlessly if they have concluded this “must” be the case.
Instead, let us learn to trust our Lord’s providential appointments. Given a life ordinarily lived uprightly before Him, He does not withhold His good things from us – excepting to grant us some other blessing in His infinite wisdom and loving heart – which only eternity will reveal to have been greater than that we sought in our fallen wisdom. Trust Him believed – trust Him.
Those in Christ must remember we are dealt with as beloved children, not mere citizens of our Lord’s Kingdom. Citizens we are – but more, we are His own! He will not treat us poorly. He cannot. He is God.