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Archive for September 16th, 2013

The voice of one crying in the wilderness

Posted by appolus on September 16, 2013

IN Matthew 3 the Scriptures identifies John the Baptist as the one crying in the wilderness from Isa 40:3 The voice of him who cries in the wilderness, Prepare the way of Jehovah, make straight a highway in the desert for our God.

I this passage Isaiah is first of all speaking to those who dwelt in exile in Babylon. The message was to them and more specifically to those who would return to the heart of God and leave the world behind. The vast majority of exiles did not return to Jerusalem when they were free to but chose instead to continue to live in exile in a place where they had grown comfortable.

Decades before they had been taken captive by the Babylonians at the hand of God in judgement. Now, when their opportunity came to leave, by staying they were proving that their hearts had been taken captive by the Babylonian system and way of life. God’s judgment always brings to light the true state of the heart. The very fact that they chose to stay, highlighted why they had been allowed to be taken captive in the first place. Men so often praise the Lord with their lips but their hearts belong to another.

Now Isaiah is speaking prophetically i this passage not only of the exiles but also of John the Baptist. Mat 3:3 For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying, “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight.” Now John has also been called to speak to a people in exile. A people who have been cut off from God despite the fact that they were not in physical exile from Jerusalem and the temple but were in exile from the presence of God. The very system and temple that had been designed to worship God and be a dwelling place, a place for God to inhabit, had become devoid of His presence. This was a judgement to bring to light the true state of the heart.

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