john the baptist

A sneaky peek at Sunday’s sermon…

Because of the way we arrange the Christmas story we sometimes forget that John and Jesus are the same age.  Remember John is Jesus’ cousin.  His mother is Elizabeth who was pregnant around the same time as Mary.  When John talks about scanning the crowds he’s looking for a fully-grown Jesus.  He’s not talking about a baby in a stable.  He’s talking about the Messiah, coming, now.

John’s father was Zachariah, the priest.  That means that John would be destined for the priesthood and yet we find him in a very different priestly role.  The holy man not in the synagogue or the temple but out in the wild.

This is our first clue about this Messiah John is raving about.  Jesus isn’t going to be religious in the conventional sense.

But then conventional is never astonishing is it?  Conventional means tried and tested.  Conventional means agreed on, decided, settled.  And that doesn’t seem to describe Jesus to me.  At all.

It’s getting closer.  This Christmas thing.