John and Jesus: Mentor or Rival?
The early relationship between Jesus and John the Baptist has long been a topic of . John became his disciples, so Jesus began his ministry as a disciple of. Our study will focus on John the Baptist, his mission, his message, and his methods. John the Baptist with Elijah, especially in relation to his appearance. . Christ had done, he sent a question by his disciples: 3 “Are you the. How did John the Baptist and Jesus relate to each other? joined his circle of disciples for some time, learning from the prophet and working out his own views.
And the king said to the girl, "Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it to you. And immediately the king sent an executioner with orders to bring John's head. He went and beheaded him in the prison and brought his head on a platter and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard of it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb. In Matthew[ edit ] St. John the Baptist Preaching, c. Matthew shortens the account of the beheading of John, and adds two elements: Where Mark has Herod killing John reluctantly and at Herodias' insistence, Matthew describes him as wanting John dead.
Then Jerusalem and all Judea and all the region about the Jordan were going out to him, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, "You brood of vipers!
Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not presume to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father,' for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham. Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire. John would have prevented him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me? And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.
And blessed is the one who is not offended by me. A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written, "'Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.
Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force.
For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come. He who has ears to hear, let him hear. It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their playmates, "'We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn. A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners! He has been raised from the dead; that is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.
But when Herod's birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company and pleased Herod, so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. Prompted by her mother, she said, "Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter. He sent and had John beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. And his disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.
English Standard Version Main article: Since he is described as a priest of the course of Abijah and Elizabeth as one of the daughters of Aaron this would make John a descendant of Aaron on both his father's and mother's side.
There is no mention of a family relationship between John and Jesus in the other Gospels, and Raymond E. Brown has described it as "of dubious historicity". The text briefly mentions that John is imprisoned and later beheaded by Herod, but the Gospel of Luke lacks the story of a step-daughter dancing for Herod and requesting John's head.
His wife, whose name was Elizabeth, was also a descendant of Aaron. They were both righteous people, who lived blameless lives, guiding their steps by all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord. But they had no child, Elizabeth being barren; and both of them were advanced in years.
One day, when Zechariah was officiating as priest before God, during the turn of his division, it fell to him by lot, in accordance with the practice among the priests, to go into the Temple of the Lord and burn incense; and, as it was the Hour of Incense, the people were all praying outside. And an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right of the Altar of Incense.
Zechariah was startled at the sight and was awe-struck. But the angel said to him: He will be to you a joy and a delight; and many will rejoice over his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; he will not drink any wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit from the very hour of his birth, and will reconcile many of the Israelites to the Lord their God.
He will go before him in the spirit and with the power of Elijah, 'to reconcile fathers to their children' and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous, and so make ready for the Lord a people prepared for him.
And now you will be silent and unable to speak until the day when this takes place, because you did not believe what I said, though my words will be fulfilled in due course. When he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they perceived that he had seen a vision there. But Zechariah kept making signs to them, and remained dumb. And, as soon as his term of service was finished, he returned home.
After this his wife, Elizabeth, became pregnant and lived in seclusion for five months. Her name was Mary.
Gabriel came into her presence and greeted her, saying: And now, you will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will give him the name Jesus.
The child will be great and will be called 'Son of the Most High,' and the Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David, and he will reign over the descendants of Jacob for ever; And to his kingdom there will be no end.
Soon after this Mary set out, and made her way quickly into the hill-country, to a town in Judah; and there she went into Zechariah's house and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the child moved within her, and Elizabeth herself was filled with the Holy Spirit, and cried aloud: But how have I this honor, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
For, as soon as your greeting reached my ears, the child moved within me with delight! Happy indeed is she who believed that the promise which she received from the Lord would be fulfilled.
Great things has the Almighty done for me; And holy is his name. From age to age his mercy rests On those who honor him. Mighty are the deeds of his arm; He scatters the proud with their own devices, he casts down princes from their thrones, and the humble he uplifts, the hungry he loads with gifts, and the rich he sends empty away.
He has stretched out his hand to his servant Israel, Ever mindful of his mercy As he promised to our forefathers For Abraham and his race for ever. When Elizabeth's time came, she gave birth to a son; and her neighbors and relations, hearing of the great goodness of the Lord to her, came to share her joy. A week later they met to circumcise the child, and were about to call him 'Zechariah' after his father, when his mother spoke up: Asking for a writing-tablet, he wrote the words — 'His name is John.
All their neighbors were awe-struck at this; and throughout the hill-country of Judea the whole story was much talked about; and all who heard it kept it in mind, asking one another — "What can this child be destined to become? Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit, and, speaking under inspiration, said: This was the oath which he swore to our forefather Abraham — That we should be rescued from the hands of our enemies, and should serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness, In his presence all our days.
And you, child, will be called prophet of the Most High, For you will go before the Lord to make ready his way, to give his people the knowledge of salvation In the forgiveness of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, Whereby the Dawn will break on us from heaven, to give light to those who live in darkness and the shadow of death, And guide our feet into the way of peace.
And John went through the whole district of the Jordan, proclaiming baptism on repentance, for the forgiveness of sins. This was in fulfillment of what is said in the writings of the prophet Isaiah — 'The voice of one crying aloud in the wilderness: Every chasm will be filled, Every mountain and hill will be leveled, The winding ways will be straightened, The rough roads made smooth, and everyone will see the salvation of God.
Who has prompted you to seek refuge from the coming judgment? Let your lives, then, prove your repentance; and do not begin to say among yourselves 'Abraham is our ancestor,' for I tell you that out of these stones God is able to raise descendants for Abraham! Already, indeed, the axe is lying at the root of the trees.
John the Baptist and Jesus
Therefore, every tree that fails to bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. And when some soldiers on active service asked "And we — what are we to do?
He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. Even the disciples seemed ready and willing if it came to a show of arms Luke I see a rather clear chronological scheme laid out here: Jesus seems to be saying that a certain element of Israelites who tended toward violence was attracted to John, his ministry, and his message. Why would this be the case?
For one thing, it would seem as though John were the only prophet in those days. Before that, there were a substantial number of Old Testament prophets who prophesied. The law, too, had its prophetic aspects. I do not believe that Jesus is seeking to be critical of John or of his ministry. No wonder John had some doubts. Jesus did not seem to be playing out the script John and others had for Messiah in their minds. I am reminded of a television commercial that ran a number of years ago.
The other statement in verse 15 underscores the qualification in verse This is an exhortation for the reader to think more deeply than merely on the surface. It is not a challenge to think literally, but to think beyond what is literal — that is what parables are about. They are not meant for everyone to understand. John is Elijah in a more symbolic sense. John was Elijah-like in his appearance. This was hardly an accident.
John purposed to take on this look. Both John and Elijah spent time living in more remote places, eating food that was different from typical folks. John made it clear that Jesus was far greater than he Matthew 3: Elijah was more a man of violence; Elisha was more a man of peace. Elijah had his doubts, when his spectacular confrontation on Mount Carmel seemed to fail. Is this the way John also felt? It was through others, whom he was to designate, that God would bring about significant changes in the nation 1 Kings My point is that the similarities between John and Elijah are numerous, I believe.
These two really were alike. Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. No, you will be thrown down to Hades! For if the miracles done among you had been done in Sodom, it would have continued to this day.
Think of the way Matthew has crafted this Gospel to show the building excitement and the enthusiastic expectation that Messiah would soon appear. The disciples have been sent out two-by-two, and they have apparently returned.
As I mentioned earlier, no Gospel actually records what happened when the twelve went out, performing miracles and proclaiming that the kingdom of heaven was near. The closest we come is a brief description of the response of the seventy-two when they returned from a similar mission: Yes, Father, for this was your gracious will.
No one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son decides to reveal him. Notice that the seventy-two give no account of the success of their mission. That is, they mention nothing about how many actually repented in response to their ministry.
When they return to Jesus, all these disciples can talk about is how much power they had — even the demons had to submit to their authority! The words which follow are quite similar to those we find in Matthew 11 in our text. Up until now, Matthew has given us reports as to how people responded to Jesus Matthew 4: It is not a good report; indeed it is a shocking assessment of how men have responded to the gospel. In spite of the popularity of Jesus with the crowds, very little repentance is evident.
Jesus sent His disciples out to proclaim the approaching arrival of the kingdom of heaven. Now, Jesus indicts those Israelite cities who had most frequently witnessed the presence, preaching, and miracle-working power of Jesus, and now of His disciples. Jesus likened that generation to children who complained because He would not dance to their tune.
These were fickle folks. Notice how our Lord continues the theme of His relationship to John the Baptist. The two of them were very different, but that generation rejected them both. Then Jesus and His disciples came along, both eating and drinking, and they accused Him of being a glutton and a drunkard, and worse yet! One who associated with sinners.
The link between John and Jesus was buttressed by the fact that this generation rejected them both. It was not to draw large crowds or to attract a huge following, but rather to call sinners to repentance. Jesus names specific cities. We know almost nothing about Chorazin.
It is mentioned only here and in Luke From what our Lord says here, it is apparent that this city saw a great deal of our Lord, and yet they did not repent. Bethsaida is a different story. Jesus may very well have been in or near Bethsaida as He spoke these words of rebuke see Luke 9: We know from John 1: Jesus very clearly assumes that there are degrees of punishment in verses Greater punishment is due those who have been given greater revelation, and then have rejected it.
Less punishment goes to those who have acted with less revelation. This same principle is taught in Luke Thus, Chorazin and Bethsaida two predominantly Jewish towns where Jesus did much of His ministry will be subject to greater judgment when the Messiah returns than will Tyre 10 and Sidon verses Tyre and Sidon get a fair amount of attention from the Old Testament prophets Isaiah 23; Jeremiah This was the home of the Canaanite woman who asked Jesus to cast the demon from her daughter Matthew These were, by and large, Gentile towns seldom touched by the ministry or message of Messiah.
Our Lord next draws the same contrast between Capernaum and Sodom in verses 23 and Many of His miracles and a good part of His teaching were done there. No city had more exposure to Jesus, His preaching, and His infinite power than Capernaum. And yet the city did not repent. Because of this, Jesus indicated that it would be better for Sodom than for Capernaum on the day of judgment.
Why does Jesus ask the city of Capernaum if it expects to be exalted to heaven? What was it about Capernaum that led to this kind of arrogance? Two thoughts come to mind here.
First, Capernaum may have taken great pride in being the headquarters of Jesus. The tourist business must have really been booming in Capernaum with all the people flocking there to get a glimpse of Jesus — better yet, to get healed by Jesus. Second, the arrogance of Capernaum is reminiscent of the arrogance of Tyre, as described by Isaiah and Ezekiel: It would seem to me, then, that our Lord is amplifying His rebuke of Capernaum by describing this city in a way that is reminiscent of the Old Testament description of Tyre and her king.
In all cases, God judges men on the basis of what they do with what they know. In Romans 1, the heathen are condemned because they have rejected the revelation God has provided them in nature. In Romans 2, the Jews have a greater guilt because they have received the revelation of God in the law, and they rejected it. These words are strikingly similar to what we find in Luke In Luke 10, Jesus has sent out the seventy or seventy-twoand they have just returned with a joyful account of how much power they had.
Jesus puts this in perspective by instructing them to rejoice rather that their names have been written down in heaven Luke Now Jesus moves to what we would know as the doctrine of divine election.
Jesus does something very similar in Matthew A little thought will explain why Jesus emphasizes divine election. Romans 9 is about divine election. God chooses some, and not others, as a demonstration of His sovereignty. I believe Matthew is employing the same kind of argument here in chapter He was well thought of, sought after by many, followed by awe-struck crowds.
His disciples were sent out with His message and power, and they performed many wonders. What could be more successful than this? The problem is that popularity is not the same thing as repentance. These cities have not repented, in spite of the presence of Jesus and His disciples, in spite of the preaching of John, Jesus, and His disciples. How could Jesus praise the Father for failing? This was not a failure, then, but a success, for which God should and does receive the glory.
Secondly, we see that there are those who have believed. The Father chose to conceal the things of the kingdom of heaven from those we would think are the most likely to grasp them — the wise and intelligent. Instead, the Father has revealed these things to little children, those we would consider least likely or able to understand them. God is sovereign in salvation. Jesus can praise God because those He intended to understand and to believe have understood and have believed.
Jesus, John the Baptist, and the Jews (Matthew ) | angelfirenm.info
Verse 27 takes us even one step further. In verses 25 and 26, Jesus views salvation as the selective work of the Father. This, Jesus says, was pleasing to the Father verse But in verse 27, Jesus goes even farther, for He now claims this sovereign right of choosing those who will believe for Himself. The Father has handed all things over to the Son. No one knows the Son fully and completelyexcept the Father, and no one can know the Father except the Son and all those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.
In chapter 9, Jesus demonstrated His authority to forgive sins Matthew 9: Not only does Jesus have the authority to forgive sins, He has the authority to determine whose sins He will forgive. Some have wrongly concluded that if God is the One who determines whom He will save and whom He will not, that man has no choice at all in the matter.
I must call your attention to the fact that immediately after claiming the authority to determine who is saved and who is not, Jesus gives this invitation to salvation in verses Earlier, the message has been relatively simple: Their leaders were not characterized by compassion and mercy.
In chapter 23, Matthew records some harsh indictments that our Lord makes against the scribes and Pharisees. Among them is this one: But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they teach.
In reality, the people of Israel were without the kind of Shepherd they most needed. Jesus did not exhort men to try harder at keeping the law and earning righteousness. He called on those who were weary of the burdens imposed on them by their wicked shepherds.
He offers to give those who are weary rest. The Best of All Conclusions: Not to the powerful, but to the weak Not to the arrogant, but to the humble Not to the law-keepers, but to those who have come to see what the law was to teach—their sin.
Jesus has rebuked those who would force their way into the kingdom. They are the ones who have trusted in their powers, their works, and their wisdom. They are the ones who have refused to repent.
While the Pharisees placed added burdens on the backs of men and refused to help carry them Matthew Who are the people to whom salvation is offered? Not those who try harder.