#1 in the series "Christmas: Hopes And Fears"
This is a deep Christmas text because it has to do with understanding the purpose of the birth of Jesus. "Are you the one who is to come - that's Advent - the coming of Jesus in this world." John's question has to do with knowing what we should look for with the coming of Jesus into this world and what we shouldn't look for. This text is all about getting that Christmas coming of the Messiah right.
Look at verse 2 - "Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ,he sent word by his disciples."
He has heard of all the things Jesus had been doing. What things? What did John hear about while he was in prison? Very great and special things. He heard about Jesus healing the sick, raising the dead, forgiving sins, cleansing lepers.He heard about truly amazing things.
It can't be that John was ignorant about Jesus might and power. Either as a first hand witness or by word of mouth he knew at least some of the amazing things Jesus was doing. Everybody knew.
All of this raises the difficult question. What caused his doubts? What was draining joy and expectation from his heart? And we come to see it wasn't what Jesus was doing - especially for others. It was what Jesus wasn't doing - especially for John in prison.
Rev. Don Horban - December 24, 2015
Rev. Don Horban - December 13, 2015