John 1:29-34 (ESV)
The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.’ I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.” And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.”
One of John the Baptist’s primary callings from God was to prepare the way for Jesus and His ministry. John sacrificed so much for that calling, including the comforts of home, his reputation, his very safety and security, and much more. However, from what we know about John, none of that mattered in comparison to fulfilling the incredible calling of prophesying the coming of the Lamb of God, preaching the good news of what Jesus’s coming meant, and baptizing those who repented of their sins. Jesus meant everything to him.
Oddly, based on the response we see in today’s reading, it seems that Jesus and John did not have many interactions, even though they were relatives. I am sure that John, however, felt very connected to Jesus because he had dedicated his life to making Him known. What an incredible moment this must have been when John beheld Jesus coming his way. Up to this point, John had spoken of a fairly unknown figure, and this was his moment to put a name with the face. Based on John’s description, he was given a supernatural understanding of who Jesus was. He exquisitely reveals to the people the importance of Jesus, and that the very image of God walks among them. This was a powerful moment as Jesus began His ministry and started His journey toward being the savior of the world.
- If John the Baptist was a prophet of God who spoke directly for God, what does his response tell you about the importance of Jesus?
- How is our role today, as disciples of Jesus, very similar to that of John the Baptist?
- John calls Jesus the Lamb of God. What does this mean, and why is it significant to our faith?
- Jesus, my Savior, thank you for being the Lamb of God. I, like John, want to tell others about You boldly, and live in such a way that shows how important to life you are. Give me the boldness in your Spirit to live in a way that prepares the hearts of others to receive you.
- Revelation 5:12 (Look at how we will worship Jesus for eternity.)