John's death occurred apparently just before the third Passover of our Lord's ministry. Apart from Jesus Christ, John the Baptist is probably the most theologically significant figure in the Gospels. Unlike so many people, John the Baptist knew his mission in life. John stated that Jesus was greater than he, and that Jesus had a more powerful ministry and baptism ( Mark 1:7-8 ; Luke 3:16 ; John 1:26-27 ). He lived in the desert wilderness, ate locust and wild honey and preached a strange message. What Is Forgiveness According to the Bible? The two women were pregnant at the same time. He willingly confronted the hypocrisy of the religious establishment ( Matt 3:7 ; Luke 3:7 ). 28.) Apollos was from Alexandria in North Africa and at one point knew only of the baptism of John ( Acts 18:24-25 ). Jesus himself came from Galilee to Jordan to be baptized of John. Herod gave instructions to an officer of his guard, who went and executed John in the prison, and his head was brought to feast the eyes of the adulteress whose sins he had denounced. His death is supposed to have occurred just before the third passover, in the course of the Lords ministry. He did not hesitate to expose the immorality of Herod and chose to die a martyr's death rather than compromise his convictions ( Matt 14:3-12 ; Mark 6:17-29 ). After this no more is recorded of him for thirty years than what is mentioned in Luke 1:80 . Isaiah 53 Interpretations. In his darkest hour he questioned if Jesus was the One who was to come, or whether there would be another. John's parents are Zachariah and Elizabeth (who is called the cousin of the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus.) He pointed him out to his disciples, saying, "Behold the Lamb of God." In Isaiah 40:3 and Malachi 4:5, John's coming was foretold. And the authenticity of repentance was evidenced in very practical terms: share with those in need, eliminate graft, and prohibit extortion ( Luke 3:11-14 ). We even know about him from outside the New Testament. But for all of his greatness, John was merely human. There he baptized thousands unto repentance. was of the priestly race by both parents, for his father, Zacharias, was himself a priest of the course of Abia or Abijah, ( 1 Chronicles 24:10 ) and Elisabeth was of the daughters of Aaron. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. His doctrine and manner of life roused the entire south of Palestine, and the people from all parts flocked to the place where he was, on the banks of the Jordan. John the Baptist is one of the most distinctive characters in the New Testament. John the Baptist was conceived in a miraculous way. The Purpose of Baptism in the Christian Life, General Biblical Studies, Interdenominational Christian Training Center. His supernatural birth, his life, and the general expectation that some great one was about to appear, were sufficient to attract to him a great multitude from "every quarter." Through God's direction, John the Baptist challenged the people to prepare for the coming of the Messiah by turning away from sin and being baptized as a symbol of repentance. also John 1:6-9 ; John 3:27-30 ). 29.). ), a fortress on the southern extremity of Peraea, 9 miles east of the Dead Sea, and here he was beheaded. All rights reserved. For usage information, please read the Baker Book House Copyright Statement. A court festival was kept at Machaerus in honor of the kings birthday. When we come to realize that God has given us a specific purpose for our lives, we can move forward with confidence, fully trusting the One who called us. John the Baptist is a mysterious figure in the New Testament. Also, to what extent did John influence the life and ministry of Jesus? In recent scholarship, the historical relationship between Jesus and John has been the subject of study. In daring disregard of the divine laws, Herod Antipas had taken to himself Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip; and when John reproved him for this, as well as for other sins, ( Luke 3:19 ) Herod cast him into prison. John flatly denied that he was Elijah reincarnated ( John 1:21 John 1:25 ). He denied that he was the Christ and repeatedly emphasized that he was simply a witness to the Light ( John 1:19-23 ; cf. John who wrote this Gospel is writing about another John. Like John the Baptist, we don't have to fear to live with a radical focus on our God-given mission. In this type of study, John often serves as a paradigm for interpreting the life and ministry of Jesus.