Now John was clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. And he preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
Comment: You must confess that John’s manner of living, his abode, his dress, his food choices set him apart from the majority. But he attracted large attendances to his cause.
His message was preparing for the coming of One much greater than himself. The One, whom he was proclaiming would baptize with the Holy Spirit rather than the water which he was using. I wonder what his hearers made of that? Maybe more than people would today because they had a basic grasp of what was in the Old Testament.
Jesus turned up and even though we are told in many places that He was sinless he walked into the waters for baptism of repentance. Then a dove descended (the symbol of the Holy Spirit) and a voice (God’s voice?) boomed out from the skies, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
Surely that would have made Mark’s readers sit up and listen for what is to follow!
Prayer: And I also am anxious to read on, my Father God.