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John The Baptist.

Discussion in 'Bible Study' started by Phil, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. John The Baptist.

    So I was reading... And have a question maybe somebody knows the answer to.

    Matthew 11:11-14 says:
    "11Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John The Baptist! Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.12 From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force.13For all the prophets and the Law prophesied until John.14And if you are willing to accept it, John himself is Elijah who is was to come."

    And John 1:19-23:
    "19This is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent to him priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?"
    20And he confessed and did not deny, but confessed, "I am not the Christ."
    21And they asked him, "what then? Are you Elijah?" And he said, "I am not." "Are you the prophet?" He answered, "No."
    22Then they said to him, "Who are you, so that we may give an answer to those who sent us?" "What do you say about yourself?"

    23He said, 'I am A VOICE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS. ' MAKE STRAIGHT THE WAY OF THE LORD,' as Isaiah the prophet said."

    Now my first question... Why will John the baptist be least in the kingdom?

    Well it states this in Matthew 5:19...

    "Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven"

    But the only one other than Jesus who taught the Law was Moses...

    Now if we look at Abraham, Issac and Jacob, they all lived peaceful lives with the people of Canaan but not with Moses... Moses took the land by force. So it would seem that anyone in the kingdom of heaven would be greater than Moses but it says John... Also Jesus said John was Elijah, I get that because it was foretold but why did John deny it? It would seem that John is Elijah, Moses and Isaiah... How can that be? Does anybody have some insight on this?
  2. Here's one perspective:

    John will not be the least in the Kingdom.

    the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he

    There just would be people who would be greater than John. And that superiority would be for people who would come

    From the days of John the Baptist until now

    Those are Christians. And Christians are indeed, in a sense, have an advatage over people who were under the Old Testament, including John the Baptist:

    But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises
    Heb 8:6

    Christians have a better covenant, Christians have better promises.

    Those are the points why there are peple that are greater than John the Baptist.

    Because it's the truth. John was not Elijah. However, if we will be specific

    And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias
    Luke 1:17

    John was not Elijah per se. But in John is the spirit and power of Elijah.
  3. Hmm That is kind of difficult but suffice to say that Jesus tells us once we have been born again we are all equal in God's sight . I don't think there will be any distinction .

    Matthew 20:25-28
    25Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 26Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 27and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— 28just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

    Proverbs 22:2
    2 Rich and poor have this in common:
    The LORD is the Maker of them all.
  4. @Dusty
    Well the thing that confuses me is that Jesus said John was Elijah in Matt 11:14 and i get that because that was foretold in Malachi 4:4-6 but him referring himself to Isaiah and him denying being who Jesus said he was confuses me. And then the reference of being least in the kingdom greater than John... And the reference to Moses...
  5. Hmmm .... Well is says ..... And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.

    The " the " there is like an Elijah but I don't think it means that he is Elijah
  6. Well It would make sense for he to be Elijah wouldn't it? IF we look at Malachi 4, verses 5 and 6.

    "5Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the Lord.6He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that i will not come and smite the land with a curse."

    If God didn't send Elijah/John the Baptist then he wouldn't have restored the peoples hearts and prepared the way for Jesus. If God didn't then send Elijah before the coming of the Lord then Jesus would have came to smite the land with a curse rather than to save it. That's my take on it anyways...
  7. Oh I think I figured it out. John is not Moses, for everyone who is great in the world shall be small in heaven and everyone who is small in the world shall be great in heaven. More meaning equality in heaven that our works do not give us a higher standing in heaven. So that is figured out. He is not Moses. Also he is not Isaiah. He merely told the Levites in John 1:23 that asked him who he was, he merely quoted Isaiah and told them he was the messenger to prepare the way for Jesus. I think that may also be why he denied being Elijah. It doesn't matter who he was, the only thing that matters is that he was the one paving the way for the Lord. So in my eyes, he is neither Moses nor Isaiah but he is Elijah.

    Phew... So that clears up a lot of confusion for me.
  8. Wow ... Very good Phil ... That makes a lot of sense . God Bless .,
  9. Thanks. I was so confused the other day until it came to me. I didn't want to stop reading the bible until I figured it out... You know that urge you get when wanting to figure something out? It will drive you mad! LOL! Now I can finally move on though. PHEW!
  10. But the more we study and ask the Holy Spirit the more we are in tune with Him and the more He reveals to us . I have a really good study Bible and it goes into a lot of the history of that day plus the Greek and Hebrew words . It is so helpful . YOu may want to look for something like that.

    God Bless , Phil .... It's so exciting when we get the revelation for the Holy Spirit isn't it ?
  11. Yes it is. And yes I am interested in learning Greek and Hebrew for the study bibles but first I have to master the Dutch language so it will take a bit of time before I can get to the Greek.
  12. Yes you certainly have your plate full right now .
  13. Hi Phil,

    At the risk of confusing you again :) (but I hope I don't) Here is another thought:
    What Jesus is making known to the people is that the game has changed. That John marks the beginning of a "quantum leap" for those of mankind who belong to the Lord. The phrase "born of women" is to signify flesh and blood human. In other words among flesh and blood humans none is greater than John the Baptist. The coming of John the Baptist is the culmination of the prophecies of the prophets and the Law. In other words THIS is the point they were all leading to and pointing forward to. THIS is the turning point of the human race.

    From now on those born of the Spirit are a NEW CREATION. No longer merely human but now the "Sons of God", the sons of "elohiym" (which is the Hebrew word we translate as "God"). But the elohiym are not flesh and blood human, they are something greater than flesh and blood. Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God which is why when Jesus returns we are changed in the twinkling of an eye. casting off this body of Flesh and blood and putting on the incorruptable spiritual bodies that Paul speaks of. To take on the full form of the elohiym and be as the Angels who are also elohiym as Jesus is also (That is why He is both Son of Man - human and Son of God - elohiym).

    Indeed the greatest flesh and blood human ever (i.e. those who are born of women) is still far less than the least Elohiym in the kingdom of Heaven. Jesus is reminding us that those who are to be saved are destined to become something greater than mere flesh and blood human. Paul also reminded us of it as did John:

    My friend, what Jesus is telling you is that those who are born again of the Spirit are a new creation, they ARE elohiym: something far greater than we were.

    Regards Misty
  14. The greatness and least-ness of John the Baptist
    both relate to his role as the last old testament
    prophet. While “great” in the sense that he was
    privileged to introduce the long-awaited Messiah,
    Christ Jesus (he is the Elijah who was to come), to
    the nation of Israel, he was also “lesser” than any
    new covenant saint with a personal relationship with

    The context of this passage is that things are
    different now that Jesus, the Christ, has arrived, and
    brought the kingdom of heaven with Him. Now is
    the time for strong men to eagerly lay hold of it.

    The word translated “forceful” in the NIV is
    translated “violent” in the NASB, NKJV and KJV. The
    idea of the word in this context is to seek something
    aggressively, urgently, without fear or consideration
    of the consequences.

    The meaning of and the connection to these verses you asked about indicates that John opened the kingdom of heaven to sinners and thereby became the culminating point of Old Test. witness. Jesus statement that "this is Elijah" tells us that John's ministry was predicted by Malachi in 4:5-6.
  15. Well, here's my two cents.
    The verses Mat. 11:11 and 11:12 are some of the most misunderstood verses in the bible in my humble opinion.

    Mat.11:11 ( first part) " I assure you :Among those born of women no one greater than John the Baptist has appeared,...
    Meaning? That part you got right. No need to be redundant.

    Mat.11:11 ( second part) ..." but the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
    Jesus is obviously speaking in present tense, not the future. Christ has not yet been crucified and because of that and because John doesn't live to see the crucifixion, he doesn't enter the kingdom like you and I do. John must wait until Christ descends just like all the old testament saints waited.
    So what kingdom is John least in? Remember. At this point in time the kingdom is controlled at the Temple. John is of the Priestly line but due to a mutually agreed exhile, John is excluded from the Temple hierchy. Therefore he IS the least in the kingdom.

    Mat. 11:12 From the days of John the Baptist until now , the kingdom has been SUFFERING violence, and the violent have been sezing it by force.

    This is talking about the Temple hierchy and how they plot, steal, conspire, manipulate and even murder to take and hold their positions of power and influence. This so readily illustrated in the parable of the vineyard, how messenger after messenger(prophets) was abused or killed.

    After Christ was crucified and He descended, John was no longer the least in the kingdom. The Temple hierchy lost their power(even with one last attempt to seize the kingdom by force).
    I sure wouldn't want to be in the shoes of the christian who stands at the table of the Lord with John the Baptist humbly standing behind him waiting to be seated and then upon the announcement to be seated presumes to be greater than John. What an embarrassment and humiliation awaits them. I would much rather stand aside and let John take his place at the table while I humbly eat crumbs from the floor and hope to be given a place at the table than to presumptuously sit in a place not mine and have Christ himself remove me.
    I'm not a replacement theology adherent. The bible describes us as co-heirs and as the adopted. I'd be very careful with any doctrine bypassing humility or endorsing exclusiveness.
  16. Dan........this thread is about 2 years old and "phil". dusty amd misty have long departed so there wont be a lot of reaction from them.
  17. It's OK Major. It's only my two cents worth........nothing expensive.

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