TURN TO GOD

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MUSINGS – December 26, 2018

TURN TO GOD

Matthew 3:1-6
Later, John the Baptizer appeared in the desert of Judea. His message was, “Turn to God and change the way you think and act, because the kingdom of heaven is near.” Isaiah the prophet spoke about this man when he said, “A voice cries out in the desert: ‘Prepare the way for the Lord! Make his paths straight!'” John wore clothes made from camel’s hair and had a leather belt around his waist. His diet consisted of locusts and wild honey. Jerusalem, all Judea, and the whole Jordan Valley went to him. As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River.

Over three hundred years before the birth of John or Jesus, the prophet Malachi declared, “I’m going to send my messenger, and he will clear the way ahead of me. Then the Lord you are looking for will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the promise will come. He is the one you want,” says the LORD of Armies.

For over three centuries there were no prophets of the Lord took bring his word to his people, and then John appears and carries the message of repentance. John’s clothing is mentioned because it identified him with Elijah (2 Kings 1:8). We know from the Gosple of Luke that John’s father, Zachariah, was a priest in the Temple. But John does not take his message to the temple but goes out in the wilderness along the Jordan River.

His message that the kingdom of heaven is coming is great news to the Jews who are living under Roman occupation. But he was also warning them that they needed to be cleansed of their sins. He offered the visual aid of a symbols bath in the Jordan.

God bless you everyone, And to all a good night.

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All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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