ORDERS OVER $100 SHIP FREE ANYWHERE IN THE USA.
ORDERS OVER $100 SHIP FREE ANYWHERE IN THE USA.
0

Your Cart is Empty

The Nativity of John The Baptist

June 21, 2018 5 Comments

The Nativity of John The Baptist

The saints of the Christian church are great people to celebrate. Their lives, their faithfulness, their work gives us an example for our own Christian lives. The church celebrates the birth of St. John the Baptist on June 24th every year.

Why The Nativity of John The Baptist?

You probably recognize the word, “Nativity,” from the Christmas season. You set up nativity scenes, and your churches may offer nativity plays or presentations. Nativity does not, however, mean, “Christmas.” It just means, “birth.” When we celebrate the nativity of John the Baptist, we celebrate his birth. This is unusual. This is the only birth we celebrate outside of Jesus’. Why the nativity of John the Baptist?

He Has A Birth Story

The first reason is practical. John the Baptist has a birth story. We only have a few birth stories through the Old and New Testaments. Moses is born when Egypt killed all the male Hebrew babies. Samuel was born to Hannah after she prayed for a child. All the rest, well, we don’t know they’re going to be famous until they become famous.

John the Baptist had almost as much story as Jesus in the Gospel of Luke. His father, Zechariah, was in the temple offering daily worship. The angel Gabriel appeared to him and predicted that his wife, Elizabeth, would have a son. Zechariah, famously, did not believe, and the angel made him mute until he named his son John.

The Culmination of the Old Testament

The most important reason, however, is what John the Baptist symbolizes: the culmination of the Old Testament. You can see that in the song his father sings at his birth, Luke 1:68-79, called the Benedictus (the first word in the Latin translation).

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
   for he has visited and redeemed his people

The phrase “Visited and redeemed” comes straight from the Old Testament. God’s visitation was a part of his holy salvation for his people. In 1 Samuel 2:21, God gives barren Hannah more children beyond her firstborn, Samuel. “The LORD visited Hannah.” In Jeremiah 27:22 the prophet says for God, “They will be carried to Babylon and they will be there until the day I visit them.”

and has raised up a horn of salvation for us
   in the house of his servant David,
as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,

John would be the prophet that points to Jesus, the horn of salvation from the house of David and the fulfillment of the Old Testament promises.

to show the mercy promised to our fathers
   and to remember his holy covenant,
the oath that he swore to our father Abraham

The promised salvation, Jesus, is a fulfillment of the oath that God swore to Abraham. Jesus is not a separate promise. He’s not a parallel track to Abraham. Jesus is the point, the goal, of God’s promise to Abraham.

Then Zechariah turns to his newborn child and says,
And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;
   for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,

This may be the perfect description of any prophet, preparing the way of the Lord. But it is especially apt for John. His work is the end of the Old Testament preparation for Christ. He becomes the ultimate prophet before Christ.

John The Baptist As Elijah

Jesus calls John, “Elijah.” Elijah was the most important prophet in the minds of Israel during the time. They expected another Elijah to come before the Christ. In Matthew 11, Jesus says, “if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.” Even the Angel Gabriel follows suit. He says to Zechariah in Luke 1,

“[John] will go before [the Lord] in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

John was the culmination of the Old Testament order of prophets. He continues the great legacy of Elijah, who pointed the people to the covenant and reminded that a further savior would come.

Inheritors of the Old Testament

John reminds us that the Old Testament promises are not separate from New Testament ones. While John represents the culmination of the prophetic ministry in the Old Testament, he points to one even greater than him, Jesus Christ.

Jesus is the fulfilment and the completion of God’s work in the Old Testament. The promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The promise to Moses. The covenant with Israel. The promises to David. And all the rest. They find their completion in Jesus Christ. John, then, personifies that. He is the representative of the Old Testament, and he points only to Jesus.

Christians are, then, the continuation of God’s promises in the Old Testament. We are the same people as Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the rest. What God designed in the Garden of Eden, promised to Abraham, and showed through the Old Testament, we have seen what they hoped to see. We are one faith, one people with them in Christ.

Related Posts

Classic Christian Symbols And Their Meanings: The Twelve Apostles- Part 2
Classic Christian Symbols And Their Meanings: The Twelve Apostles- Part 2
Christians have always used symbols to help us understand the faith. We have a long history of beautiful images with ...
Read More
The Top 11 Christian T-Shirts Every Christian Should Wear!
The Top 11 Christian T-Shirts Every Christian Should Wear!
One of the best things about summer is that first day you don’t have to wear a coat outside. The sun is shining brigh...
Read More
Classic Christian Symbols And Their Meanings: The Twelve Apostles
Classic Christian Symbols And Their Meanings: The Twelve Apostles
Christians have always used symbols to help us understand the faith. We have a long history of beautiful images with ...
Read More

5 Responses

Brenda Reed
Brenda Reed

July 11, 2018

I love to read about stories in the Bible. It helps me understand it better when it is explained in detail. Thank you

Holly
Holly

July 01, 2018

Thank you ,loved this reading material. Educated me more about John . God bless all.

Carrie Andrews
Carrie Andrews

June 27, 2018

Thank you for the knowledge, it really makes my day 😇

Anna
Anna

June 27, 2018

Thanks

Sheila Trahan
Sheila Trahan

June 27, 2018

Thank God the birth of John The Bapist june 24.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Get 5% Off Your Order Today!

Enter Email Below And Get 5% Off Your Next Order Today...