We are NOT the Messiah, but we point to the one who IS
John 1:6-8, 19-28
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light.
The Testimony of John the Baptist
This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, ‘Who are you?’ He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, ‘I am not the Messiah.’ And they asked him, ‘What then? Are you Elijah?’ He said, ‘I am not.’ ‘Are you the prophet?’ He answered, ‘No.’ Then they said to him, ‘Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?’ He said,
‘I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness,
“Make straight the way of the Lord”’,
as the prophet Isaiah said.
Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. They asked him, ‘Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?’ John answered them, ‘I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.’ This took place in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.
Because I think we can still see our Messiah at work in the world today and we can point out how God is continuing to fulfill this prophecy from Isaiah – we, like John, are preparing a highway for God’s powerful love to enter the world.
For we are people of Advent – we stand in the wilderness of the world, pointing to the Messiah. And when the people we encounter say, who are you? We say, we are the ones who point to the coming of the light, of Jesus Christ in the world, for today prophecy is being fulfilled – God is coming to you, this day. Rejoice in this Good News, rejoice for Emmauel, God with us, is coming to us this very day. Amen.