Tuesday, January 23, 2018

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Focus on Faith

By Dr. J. B. Morris
Dec. 20, 2017 at 3:27 p.m.

"Christ is Coming"

"The beginning of the good news", in Mark 1:1-8. This is Mark's equivalent to the prologue of John and the birth narratives of Matthew and Luke. He begins with John the Baptist, a lone prophet who confronted the apostasy of Israel with a message of repentance and waters of purification. The words of Isaiah, "Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight" (v. 3), introduces the Baptist's declaration. "The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me" (v. 7). Messianic hope wanted heaven to open and God's spirit to pour over his people. The waters of repentance that poured over sinners are a prologue to that mighty happening.

The first verse of this passage is the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God. The term gospel translates to "good news" which Mark used to tell of the good news of the ministry of Jesus. John the Baptist was the messenger, as told by the prophets, when the Lord said, "Behold, I will send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare the way before thee".

John the Baptist went through the wilderness preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. He was clothed with camel's hair and ate locusts and wild honey. He preached that there was one mightier than he, referring to his cousin, Jesus. John the Baptist stated that he baptized with water but Jesus would baptize you in the Holy Spirit. John wasn't necessarily a Baptist by faith, but the name originates from one who baptizes. This passage in Mark doesn't start out with the story of Jesus being born, but the beginning of his ministry, for in verse 9, John baptizes Jesus and as soon as he came out from the water the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descended upon him. The voice of the Lord from heaven said, "Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Imagine that, when the Lord spoke on that day . . .

In remembrance we should always remember that the gospel of Jesus Christ is always good news for the world we live in today, and should reflect it. When Times are tough, remember the Good News of Jesus and how he loves us so!

We should thank God for the birth of his Son Jesus Christ!



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