What John Thought about Jesus
Today’s reading: John 1:1-2:25
My selection: John 1:29-34
29 The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.’ 31 I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.” 32 And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. 33 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.’ 34 And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.”
My reflections: There is hardly a more powerful statement in all the Bible about the identity of Jesus Christ than this one. John (aka John the Baptist whose words are recorded here by John the disciple of Jesus who authored this gospel) gives these claims as to who Jesus is and what He does:
1. He is eternal. This is, at least, implied by the words “After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.”
2. He has the Holy Spirit and baptizes others with the Holy Spirit.
3. He takes away the sin of the world in His role as the Lamb of God.
Bottom line: this is the Son of God.
These are either the most wildly bizarre claims ever made by one man of another or Jesus is to be taken as the one and only Son of God as John concluded.
My challenge: How do you see Jesus? Is He merely a good teacher, very advanced for His time? If He is not who He and His followers claimed Him to be, He cannot be considered good at all but delusional or deceptive. But if He is the Son of God, the Lamb of God, the One who baptizes with the Holy Spirit, we are left with no alternative but to worship Him, trust Him, follow Him, and obey Him. You cannot be neutral about Him. The question of “who is Jesus Christ?” is still the burning question of all history and of your life.
Tomorrow’s reading: John 3:1-4:54