• Jon Forrest

Looking for the savior

The Upward Look by Jon Forrest

Looking for the Savior

One of my favorite personalities in the Bible is a fellow named John. He was the original hippie. He would have fit right into the Duck Dynasty family without anyone noticing. John’s birth was the miracle before the big miracle. God helped his parents Zechariah and Elizabeth, who had no children and were getting up in years to have this one precious baby. But, through the angel Gabriel his father was told that his name would be John and that he was to be reared as a Nazarite, meaning that there were certain restrictions that had to be met. No razor should touch his head and no wine or strong drink should go into his mouth were among other rules for him. So, he was reared to be a weirdo in his culture.

His threads were made from camel hide, accented with a leather belt. His diet was unique. He mostly ate locust and wild honey. “How could he eat locust? Yuck!” you might ask. Well, you can get almost anything down if you dip it in wild honey.

Some might have called him a mad man because of his attire, his diet and his bold preaching! He was “a voice crying in the wilderness!” His message was a warning to people that the Lord was about to make a great move. He was coming to take care of business. John commanded that people repent of their wrong lifestyles, confess their sins and be baptized so that they could be forgiven.

In spite of this crude appearance, his almost nauseating diet and radical preaching, people came from miles away to hear him preach and to be baptized by him. His phenomenal success caught the attention of the religious leaders who came to check him out and to quiz him. John would have nothing of it. He challenged their hypocrisy telling them that even if they called themselves children of Abraham that God could make children of Abraham from rocks. He called them snakes and warned them that God’s wrath was coming for them. He told them that the ax was at the root of Israel’s tree.

With John there was only black and white, good and evil, right and wrong. He saw no gray areas. His mission was clear; prepare hearts for the coming of the promised Messiah. His most important baptism took place when is cousin, Jesus of Nazareth came requesting it. John felt inadequate for the task, but Jesus insisted.

A crucial message of Advent is part of John’s fundamental message, “Prepare the way for the Lord! Make straight paths for Him…all people will see God’s salvation.” (3:4 & 6) As we move toward Christmas Day, is your heart prepared for Him to have His way in your life? Is He straightening your walk so that Jesus can be Lord of your life?

When people come to the manger, many see a baby, while others see the Savior. When the shepherds came to the stable they worshiped Jesus because they saw more than a baby. They saw God!

When you come to the manger, what do you see?

Anticipating His Kingdom in us,


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