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.John 1:6–8, ESV
When a king was going out, it was customary to send out a messenger ahead of him to inform everyone about his imminent arrival. This messenger was called a herald. Kings didn’t just show up and tell the people: “Hello. I’m the king.” No. The King always had an entourage, and he sent a herald ahead of him so that the people could arrange a grand reception for him. Because Jesus is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, He had to have a herald as well. His herald was John the Baptist.
Ever since God had brought His people Israel out of Egypt during the Exodus, God had periodically spoken to them through the prophets, who prophesied everything from the disastrous fall of Jerusalem to the glorious arrival of the Messiah and His messenger, until around 440–400 BC, when God sent His last prophet Malachi. Malachi (whose name means “The Lord’s messenger”) prophesied that God would send His messenger to “prepare the way before me” (Mal. 3:1) and that He would send “Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes” (Mal. 4:5). Then, for the next 400 years, God was silent.Continue reading “The Herald (John 1:6–8)”