Zechariah and Elizabeth honored God.....and they really wanted a child. One day, an angel appeared to Zechariah and gave him a message from God, telling him that Elizabeth was going to have a very special son. The angel Gabriel told him that they were to name him John and that he would bring joy and gladness to many people.
Zechariah was a little doubtful and questioned Gabriel, as he and Elizabeth were quite old. This apparently was not the right thing to do.....as God took away Zechariah's voice as a sign of His power. (we read later that he did indeed get his voice back shortly after John was born)
But the angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son, and you are to name him John. You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. ~Luke 1:13-15