Wednesday 25 June 2014

Bible Book:

“He said, ’I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” (v. 23)

John 1:19-34 Wednesday 25 June 2014


The religious authorities were unsettled by this strange man whowas attracting a huge band of followers and starting some newritual which involved dunking people in the river. The Phariseessent some priests and Levites to find out who he is and John theBaptist began by making it clear who he is not! He is not theMessiah and he is not Elijah: this made it really hard for thepriests and Levites - who on earth is this man, what is he doingand why are people following him?

John the Baptist quoted the words of the prophet Isaiah toexplain who he was, he was the "voice" whose job it was to getpeople ready to receive the "Word". It is interesting to note thatin the same passage from Isaiah the prophet speaks of the grasswithering but the Word of God standing for ever (Isaiah40:1-8). By quoting this passage the Gospel is making a strongconnection with John 1:1-18 (see also yesterday's notes). John the Baptist wasgetting everything ready for the coming of the Word made flesh andhe has an important part to play in preparing the way for Jesus. Iwonder if the priests and Levites were left any clearer about whothis man is and what he is doing?

Now Jesus appears on the scene (verse 29), but this is not thefirst time these two men have met. While the Baptism of Jesus isnot described in this gospel, John the Baptist was able to tell hisfollowers what happened (verses 32-34). It was this experience thatconfirms for John the Baptist that Jesus was the one he is waitingfor. Jesus is the Word who was always with God, who was always God,yet is now the Word made flesh, a human being. This is the man thereligious authorities need to be concerned about!

To Ponder

  • What do you think is involved in "preparing the way" for Jesusin today's world?
  • When you think of Jesus as "the Word made flesh" what comes tomind? 
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