15 The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John might possibly be the Messiah. 16 John answered them all, “I baptize you with[a] water. But one who is more powerful than I will come, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with[b] the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing fork is in his hand to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” 18 And with many other words John exhorted the people and proclaimed the good news to them. 19 But when John rebuked Herod the tetrarch because of his marriage to Herodias, his brother’s wife, and all the other evil things he had done, 20 Herod added this to them all: He locked John up in prison.
John answered peoples’ questions about the coming Messiah. John had a clear understanding of his role and the far, far superior role of Jesus. He also warns people that their lives will come under scrutiny when Jesus comes. John doesn’t hold back with his warnings about the way people live their lives and will ultimately be judged. It’s important to note that people came to John with their questions about Jesus. He did not shy away from telling the truth but boldly declared what was to happen to the point where he was jailed.
John answered peoples’ questions about Jesus. It made me wonder if I was answering peoples’ questions about Jesus in my own life. One step further, were people asking me questions in the first place? John clearly had a relationship with Jesus (they were cousins) and it is out of this relationship that he gave answers to people in such a bold and direct manner. It encourages me to know Jesus better so I can answer questions and even start conversations about Jesus. It also suggests that some answers aren’t what people want to hear but shouldn’t be left out of the conversation because I feel uncomfortable.
God make me bold so I can warn our generation like John the Baptist warned his!
Written by Ainslie Woods