There was in the days of Herod, king of Judea, a certain priest, Zachariah by name, of the course of Abijah; and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. And they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren; and they both were advanced in their days.
Now it came to pass, in performing his priestly service in the order of his course before God, that according to the custom of the priest's office, it fell to his lot to enter into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people was praying without at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord, standing on the right of the altar of Incense. And Zachariah, seeing him, was troubled, and fear fell upon him.
But the angel said to him, "Fear not, Zachariah, for thy supplication was heard, and thy wife Elizabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness, and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and he shall drink no wine nor strong drink at all, and he shall be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb. And many of the sons of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go forth before His face in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous'to make ready for the Lord a people fully prepared."
And Zachariah said to the angel, "By what shall I know this? For I am an old man and my wife advanced in her days." And the angel, answering, said to him, "I am Gabriel, that attend in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to thee, and to announce these good tidings to thee. And, behold, thou shalt be mute, and not able to speak until the day that these things shall come to pass; because thou didst not believe my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season."
And the people were waiting for Zachariah, and they wondered at his tarrying in the temple. But when he came out, he was not able to speak to them, and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple; for he kept making signs to them and remained mute. And it came to pass, when the days of his ministration were completed, he departed to his house.
Now after these days, Elizabeth his wife conceived; and she hid herself five months, saying, "Thus hath the Lord done to me in the days wherein He looked upon me to take away my reproach among men."