Around the same time of Jesus’s birth came John the Baptist in the world also. And much like Jesus, he also was a miracle who came through Zacharias and Elisabeth at an old age. Jesus being a miracle, being born of a virgin and through the power of the Holy Spirit. John was also born with the Holy Spirit with Him, even from his mother’s womb also. God the Father had a purpose for Him, as well as His Only Begotten Son Jesus. Though their missions were very different, God used John to prepare the way for the Lord’s coming into the world. Surely, Jesus came to save us from our sins, which is vital for our salvation, while John was here to draw people to Him. This, he was called to do until Jesus’s ministry begin on earth. He was even prophesied of in Isaiah, chapter 40, which was approximately 700 years before Christ was born. It reads, 1“comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” (Isaiah 40:1-5)
So as 700 plus or minus years past, this prophecy of John the Baptist’s birth and ministry was finally fulfilled. For in this time, the angel Gabriel came to John’s father Zacharias, like He did with Mary, the mother of Jesus. He did this in order to bring him good tidings about his future son. This the angels said to John, 2“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 shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:14-17) Then, after John’s birth, He was officially named John by his parents. Zacharias was then filled with the Holy Spirit and said, 2“and thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways; To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins, Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us, To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his shewing unto Israel.” (Luke 1:76-80)
In John, chapter 1, John the Baptist is introduced as a prophet and his ministry begins. It reads, 3“there was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” (John 1:6-9) Jesus is the light and was the reason why He was sent forth to preach and prepare their hearts for Him. therefore He said, 3“John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.” (John 1:15-23)
John made known his purpose many times to people, in that he was not the Christ, but that He was sent to prepare the way for Him. In the same chapter of John, it also reads, 3“and they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet? John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.” (John 1:25-31) As you can see, John’s purpose was to prepare the way of the Lord, until His coming. I can just imagine how he must have felt the day that Jesus came to him to be baptized. This must have been the best time of his entire life. To be in the company of Jesus, whom He had spoken so much of, must have been amazing in every way. Now, my friends, I bear witness that John was the messenger of God to prepare the way for Jesus. He did this in honor of Jesus who would then come to save us from our sins. Praise the Lord that this came to pass as prophesied.
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, I am only a humble servant of Yours, and if I have strength in my life, then it is by Your hand alone. Therefore, I am able to do all things by Your hand. Use me and I will bring your gospel message to all that will listen. Build a home in my life, that I may say and do as You would on this earth. Send down the Holy Spirit into my heart, that many people will be moved to know You, Jesus. It is my will, like John the Baptist’s, to prepare the way for Your second coming. As I am prepared and waiting for You most diligently, I also wish to see many more souls be saved until that special day comes. Surely, the day will be fierce and people will be fearful who don’t know You as their personal Savior, but those that do will rejoice, for their King has come. Yes, Lord, You are my God who I love and honor with my whole heart. There is nothing I’d rather do, then to be in Your will always. Your commands are like honey to my mouth. I love Your ways and wish that more people would delight in following Your commandments also. For in Your ways are we led to eternal life and happiness in this life and the next. If people could just experience the great joy in my heart, they would also fully surrender their lives to You, Jesus. Therefore, will I go forth and be a light unto the world, as You shine down upon me. I am not the light, but Your light is in me now, so that people will come to You for counsel, teaching, direction and more importantly, salvation. I love You, Lord. All the praise and honor to Your holy Name. Amen.
Let us read the Bible:
Note: Any Numbered References, found above, are listed below.