Today the Eastern Church celebrates the feast of the praise of Saint John the Baptist, the forerunner to Jesus. In previous articles we have learnt that John coming as a forerunner for Jesus was a significant thing. John came to reveal the true identity of Jesus, and to prepare the way for him. He was sent to announce Jesus’ arrival so the people could prepare themselves through baptism.
What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you and more than a prophet. This is the one about whom it is written, See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.
Luke :7:26-27 (Gospel reading)
John was born to Mary’s baron cousin Elizabeth and her husband Zachariah. During the visitation, when Mary visits her cousin, Jesus blesses John from inside Mary’s womb and while John is also still in Elizabeth’s womb. It is clear from the beginning that John is destined for something great.
John is praised on this day for baptising Jesus in which his mission was completed as Jesus was revealed to all.
And when Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved,[a] with whom I am well pleased.’
Go back to The Epiphany of Our Lord