The Word This Week

Matt 11:1…

After speaking of the cost of preaching truth to the prevailing power of culture during His day - and ours - we have the first example of one who refused to remain silent in the presence of depraved sin, even when that sin was in the life of the king.

John the Baptist made himself an irritant to the prevailing culture, including the king, by preaching God’s truth to everyone and anyone without exception.

It got him arrested. He was imprisoned by king Herod, who had married his brother’s wife, Herodias.

From prison, John sent two of his disciples to inquire of Jesus. His inquiry might seem strange to us, but it reveals both the human condition and the truth of God’s Word. Can a hero of the Bible have doubts? Is that allowed? While we do not know exactly how long John had been languishing in prison, we do know it had been long enough to call into question in his own mind whether Jesus was actually the long-promised Messiah John had proclaimed him to be or not.

After all, it is quite possible in John’s mind – as it was obviously in other people’s minds – that Messiah would come to rule and reign, and if that was the case, John was ready for Jesus to rule and reign - and Jesus could start by overthrowing Herod and having John released from prison…

That’s a reasonable thought pattern, and since that was not happening: Is Jesus the Messiah? John sent two of his disciples to find out.

Would Jesus be offended by this inquiry, a possible affront to His ministry?

It is interesting how Jesus answered these men. “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see.”

Jesus pointed to how His actions aligned with the Word of God, exactly fulfilling Isaiah 35:5-6. Sometimes His actions speak louder than His words – especially when His actions confirm the Word of God.

What about you? Who do you say Jesus is? Is your opinion formed by what you see and hear? Or is your opinion rightly formed by comparing what you see and hear to the Word of God?

Pastor Bill