Yesterday we saw that Jesus is the light of the world. Today we’ll learn about John the Baptist and who he is.
For some reason BibleGateway wouldn’t let me copy text tonight so I grabbed an image instead.
These 8 verses tell us not only who John the Baptist isn’t, but also who he is.
John was a man busy baptizing people in Bethany across the Jordan. This of course got the Jewish leadership curious about him. Just who was this Jew who was baptizing people and to what end?
Therefore they sent out some priests and Levites to question him, asking “Who are you?” John quite freely admitted that he wasn’t the Christ.
Still intrigued they then asked “Are you Elijah? Are you the Prophet?” John answered them NO.
The priests and Levites needed an answer so John gave them one : “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”
I can just imagine the Levites doing a head shake and thinking “say what?” 🙂 This guy makes no sense. He’s not Elijah, the prophet or the Christ… so why in the world is he baptizing people? They actually asked him that. John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.”
There are times I wonder what the leadership thought of that answer, we aren’t told in these verses. John was clear that his actions predated another who was greater than he. His baptism was merely of water. I’m guessing it started a rumour mill of speculation going… people are people regardless of when in time they are. Who could this greater one be? Someone greater than John was coming? What would he baptize with if water was used by someone insignificant?
John though was simply clear. He was not the Christ, or Elijah or The Prophet. He was just the guy who came before the other guy, the greater guy, the one that others didn’t know about yet, but who was coming. This was who John was.
John didn’t seek glory here did he? He didn’t build himself up, he showed his unworthiness.
Makes me stop and think eh? Do I toot my own horn? Do I want to make myself look important? I try not to eh? But sometimes it’s hard not to say SEE, see what I did here? It’s not our role though eh? Our role as believers is to keep pointing people to the one that comes after us, the one whose shoelaces we are not fit to untie. Have I shown anyone Christ today? I hope so, but I fear not. I was friendly with people, but did they know I did so because of Christ? Probably not. How to change this, right now I do not know. But John makes me think… how do I point people to the greater one?