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Ready Position. J#4

Check out John the Baptist’s announcement of Jesus~ So the word of God became a human being and lived among us. We saw his splendour (the splendour as of a father’s only son), full of grace and truth. And it was about him that John [the Baptist] stood up and testified, exclaiming: “Here is the one I was speaking about when I said that although he would come after me he would always be in front of me; for he existed before I was born!” Indeed, every one of us has shared in his riches—there is a grace in our lives because of his grace. For while the Law was given by Moses, love and truth came through Jesus Christ. It is true that no one has ever seen God at any time. Yet the divine and only Son, who lives in the closest intimacy with the Father, has made him known. >with this thought, it seems John concludes his introduction of the life of Christ, and moves to Jesus’ entrance into ministry.< This then is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. He admitted with complete candour, “I am not Christ.”  So they asked him, “Who are you then? Are you Elijah?” “No, I am not,” he replied. “Are you the Prophet?” “No,” he replied.   “Well, then,” they asked again, “who are you? We want to give an answer to the people who sent us. What would you call yourself?” “I am ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord’ as Isaiah the prophet said.” Now some of the Pharisees had been sent to John, and they questioned him, “What is the reason, then, for your baptizing people if you are not Christ and not Elijah and not the Prophet?” To which John returned, “I do baptize—with water. But somewhere among you stands a man you do not know. He comes after me, it is true, but I am not fit to undo his shoes!” >John the Baptist does not defend why he baptizes, but he believed that people needed cleansing from their sins, in order to be ready for the Savior.<  (All this happened in the Bethany on the far side of the Jordan where the baptisms of John took place.) On the following day, John saw Jesus coming towards him and said,       “Look, there is the lamb of God who will take away the sins of the world!  This is the man I meant when I said, ‘A man comes after me who is always in front of me, for he existed before I was born!’ It is true I have not known him, yet it was to make him known to the people of Israel that I came and baptized people with water.” Then John gave this testimony, “I have seen the Spirit come down like a dove from Heaven and rest upon him. Indeed, it is true that I did not recognize him by myself, but he who sent me to baptize with water told me this: ‘The one on whom you will see the Spirit coming down and resting is the man who baptizes with the Holy Spirit!’ Now I have seen this happen and I declare publicly before you all that he is the Son of God!”  John 1:14-34, J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS) John the Baptist was one remarkable individual — set apart to serve God by his father, Zechariah, before he was even born.  He preached a message of ‘get your life in order, the Savior is coming’, and remained faithful to it, not knowing when Jesus would come.  God had told him that the man on whom a dove lit, he was the Messiah; indeed, it happened as God had told him, and when he was baptizing Jesus, God revealed Jesus to John the Baptist.  Note:  it was in the course of John the Baptist’s faithfulness that God spoke to him.  He was in the ‘ready position’.   Me too! Christine

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