The Forerunner the Baptist
John is the Forerunner, Who Bears the Greatest Testimony
St Luke has quoted after Isaiah the prophet the following prophesy about St. John the Baptist saying: "This is he of whom it is written: ‘Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.’ (Luke 7:27 NKJV). Our Lord Jesus Christ called him the greatest among those born of women. John was the angel who has been honored because he was the prophet of the Highest as his father Zacharias said: "And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Highest; For you will go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways," (Luke 1:76 NKJV). God has chosen him for this task, surely, he has deservedthis honor. But, what are the characteristics of John the Baptist which distinguishedhim and qualified him for this honor?
Our God is faithful IN all His promises
You Must Trust in God's Promises and Praise Him
When Gabriel the angel was sent to Zacharias to announce the birth of his child John the Baptist, he doubted, saying to him: "...“How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years.” (Luke 1:8, 18 NKJV). Gabriel the angel had reproved him because he did not believe and had told him that he will be mute until God fulfills His promise.
He is The Amen and Faithful God
God is faithful and teaches us to be faithful like Him. The Scripture called Him in the Book of Revelation: “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God:" (Revelation 3:14 NKJV).
Praising God is a Joy
"And Mary said: “My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant; For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed." (Luke 1:46-48 NKJV)
The Heavenly Father
God loves us because He is the heavenly Good Father but many people do not react with His love or consider it. They subsequently never enjoy His love not because He doesnot care with them or He does not grant them His blessings but because they cannot realize His love.
The announcement of the angel Gabriel to the holy mother virgin St Mary.
"Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary." Luke 1:26-27 NKJV
The plane of God for our salvation.
Gabriel the angel was in charged to go to a certain city at a certain time, which was at the sixth month of the pregnancy of Elizabeth with her son john the Baptist, the barren wife of Zakaria the priest. Gabriel came to a certain virgin who dwell at a city of Galilee named Nazareth. This means that every thing about the story of salvation has been planned. We must trust that God has planned everything related to our salvation and nothing related to our salvation occurs accidentally.
Why st. Mary is the favorite among all human race?
St Mary is the favorite among all human race. She is the highly favored one and also she is the blessed among all women. What are the characteristics of the Mother God?
Be ready for that hour
"For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape." (1 Thessalonians 5:2-3 NKJV)
What is the word (the end of the world) means for us.
The end of our earthly life may ocurr either by death or by the ending of the world and the coming of Our Lord Jesus Christ to receive us to Him. Our departure from this world is the most monumental event which can happen to every person. So everyone ought to be ready for his departure from this earthly life, because this event is the most important crucial event of all. The spiritual state of a person at this moment determines his eternal destiny.
The examples about readiness
So everyone must do his best to be ready at that moment. The bible gave us three examples to describe what is meant by readiness: first example is the readiness of all people to keep their houses guarded, lest the thief come and robs them of their possessions. Second example is that of a pregnant woman who expects that she will bore a child although she does not know exactly what time she will be in labor, so she do her best from the beginning of the pregnancy to prepare what she will need for herself and for her newly borne for this event. The third example is that of the bride who is getting ready for her marriage long time before the ceremony of the marriage and she always looking and waiting for the hour of her wedding. Readiness may be accomplished in the following ways:
1. Do not forget that departure from this world is a fact
Readiness needs us to know and remember that every day even every moment our departure from this world is a fact and that it draws nearer to us as time goes by moreover we must wait for this event as st Peter said: "Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?" (2 Peter 3:11-12 NKJV).
2. You have to watch yourself
Readiness also needs us to be watchful for what belongs to our spiritual life and also to avoid committing transgressions against our God. This needs praying and searching the Holy bible to fulfill the commandments and to do God's will. The Lord has ordered us to watch ourselves saying : " Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:36 NKJV.
Readiness also is accomplished by repentance. repentance is essential because how can the sinner man meet the holy awesome God. Our God is Holy He accepts the repent ants as He said about the necessity of repentance: “From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Matthew 4:17 NKJV), and He said also: " I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:5 NKJV),
4. Laying up Treasures in heaven
Treasures in heaven can be accomplished through the godly deeds and through having mercy on the poor, the widows, the orphans and towards the misfortunate people... because these deeds prepare for our acceptance in heaven and welcome us there. These good deeds are counted for us in heaven as treasures. Our Lord command us to do so by saying : "Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys." (Luke 12:33 NKJV).
The end of the world
"Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.” (Matthew 24:1-2 NKJV)
The transient temple and the everlasting one
All Jews were boasting about their temple which was awesome and was so beautiful. When the disciples show their admiration about the temple, Our Lord prophesied and foretold them that the temple will be destroyed and no one stone shall be left upon another.