Is Jesus the Messiah, or should we seek someone else?
We all have times of doubt. When we DESPERATELY need a touch from God, when we NEED and yearn to hear His voice, yet He is silent. I could give examples, but you already know far too well what I am talking about.
We wonder, God, are You even listening? Are You even real? Why do you delay, Lord? Do You care about me at all?
John the Baptist was a cousin to Jesus but more importantly, he was the "voice of one crying in the wilderness, make straight paths for our God". He was separated from birth and chosen by God to preach of the coming of Jesus and to be the first person to see the spirit of God descending on Jesus and to know He was truly the Messiah.
"Now this was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, 'I am not the Messiah.' They asked him, 'Then who are you? Are you Elijah?' He said, 'I am not.' 'Are you the Prophet?' He answered, 'No.' Finally they said, 'Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?' John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, 'I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, "Make straight the way for the Lord."' Now the Pharisees who had been sent questioned him, 'Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?' 'I baptize with water,' John replied, 'but among you stands one you do not know. He is the one who comes after me, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.' This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing. The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, 'Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is the one I meant when I said, "A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me." I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel.' Then John gave this testimony: 'I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. And I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, "The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit." I have seen and I testify that this is God’s Chosen One.'" (John 1:19-34)
After this, the next time we hear of John the Baptist is when he is in prison for speaking out against the king being with his brother’s wife. While John is languishing in jail, Jesus is out traveling around preaching and healing the sick. It seems that John either had doubts of the deity of Jesus Christ or he was simply frustrated and maybe a bit angry that Jesus did not come to release him.
"John's disciples told him about all these things. Calling two of them, he sent them to the Lord to ask, 'Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?' When the men came to Jesus, they said, 'John the Baptist sent us to you to ask, "Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?"' At that very time Jesus cured many who had diseases, sicknesses and evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind. So he replied to the messengers, 'Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.'" (Luke 7:18-23)
Perhaps you think this line of thinking was foolish, but don't we do the same thing? When we have been on our knees, praying day and night for the healing of a loved one or a financial miracle or any one of dozens of other concerns and there is silence from heaven, or so it seems. We must trust the One Who holds all things in His hands, Who sees all and knows all and works ALL things together for our good.
Who can truly know the mind of God? His ways and thoughts are so far above ours that we can't even BEGIN to imagine what He is doing in us and through us. We walk by faith and not by sight and we must trust Him with our very lives because He is the lover of our souls. So if you think God has forgotten you, remember that two sparrows are sold for a penny and you are of MUCH more worth than a sparrow. He watches over you.
Yours in love and in Christ,