There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light. The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.
John 1:6-9 ESV
Jesus didn’t just suddenly appear on the scene. John the baptist was sent ahead of Him to be a witness to testify to the fact that God was sending His light into the world. God has always sent a witness to let His people know when He was getting ready to act. John was one of many men that God has used to get His message out. John like the prophets before him spoke as God led him to. His job was to tell God’s people that things were about to change in a very significant way.
John was sent to let God's People know that His light was coming into the world. When we think of light we think of illumination. Jesus was coming to shed light on God’s people. God’s people had been living in darkness for about 400 years. They had not had any communication from God since the prophet Malachi. For 400 years they had been left to their own devices. That long time of silence provided time for man to step in and mix things up. By the time John and Jesus came to Israel, divisions had set in. Two major divisions we read about in the gospels are the Pharisees and the Sadducees. There were others as well.
God’s people really needed the light, because they were wandering blindly in darkness. Division had caused people to choose between one group and another. Sound familiar? Just like in the first century there is religious and philosophical division amongst God fearing people today. We need people to bear witness to the light which is Jesus the Christ. God fearing people everywhere need to look to Jesus for the guiding light to show them how to live right, before God. Man made philosophies and divisions will not accomplish this, only the teachings of Jesus and His apostles can light the way to true obedience to God and His ways.
So today, let’s understand that the apostle John was sharing the significance of a good witness for the light. John the baptist prepared the way for Jesus to come and teach His people, the things they had been missing. Today we are the witnesses to that light, let’s let it shine for the world to see. Let’s teach only what Jesus and His apostles taught. Nothing more, nothing less.
© 2013 Leo J. Woodman