Eight days later, Elisabeth and Zechariah welcomed their neighbours and relatives into their home for the baby’s circumcision. A Hebrew surgeon named Lemuel was called to perform the ceremony.
“This is a wonderful day!” Lemuel rejoiced, clapping his hands together. “We have gathered together to celebrate with Zechariah and his wife Elisabeth in the birth of their son. I am sure that this little one, who came to them so late in life, will bring them great joy!” He took the baby from Elisabeth and cradled him in his arms. “This ceremony of circumcision was instituted by Yahweh as the sign of the covenant between Him and the Jewish people. It reminds us that we are to belong to God, worshipping and obeying Him. On this day it is also tradition to name the baby.” He looked to Zechariah and asked, “Will this child be named after you?”
“No! His name is to be John.” Elisabeth spoke up.
“John?” Lemuel asked, his bushy eyebrows rising up to meet his hairline. “But there is no one among your relatives with that name.”
Each person present started talking at once, thinking Elisabeth must be mistaken.
Lemuel turned to Zechariah and asked, “What is the child to be named?”
Zechariah asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.”
“John? Are you sure?” Lemuel asked again.
“His name is John!” Gasps of surprise came from all corners of the house as Zechariah’s voice returned to him. Laughing and crying, he began to dance around praising God and prophesying.
“My Love!” Elizabeth reached toward her husband, who grasped her in a firm embrace. She cupped his face in her hands and wept. “I have missed your voice.”
Zechariah threw caution to the wind and kissed his wife firmly on the mouth. “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because He has come and has redeemed His people!” Zechariah lifted his hands toward the heavens and cried with joy as he praised God. The people around him felt the glory of the moment and one by one began to kneel in prayer.
Zechariah took John from Lemuel and, lifting him high in his arms, proclaimed, “And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High, for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for Him. You will give God’s people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins.”
Elisabeth and Mary hugged each other and wept as Zechariah continued to prophesy. The wonder of it stole their breath away. Zechariah could speak again! What other great things would happen? Their neighbours were filled with awe and, as the weeks passed throughout the hill country of Judea, people began talking about the new baby born to Elisabeth and Zechariah. All who heard the story wondered about it, asking, “What then, is this child going to be?”
For the Lord's hand was with him.
 Luke 1:67-69