29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look! The hLamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!30He is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘A man is coming after me who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before me.’31I did not recognize him as the Messiah, but I have been baptizing with water so that he might be revealed to Israel.”
32Then John testified, “I saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove from heaven and resting upon him.33I didn’t know he was the one, but when God sent me to baptize with water, he told me, ‘The one on whom you see the Spirit descend and rest is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’34I saw this happen to Jesus, so I testify that he is the Chosen One of God.”
Jesus is recognized by John through a special sign from the Holy Spirit. John would have known Jesus all his life as they were similar in age and cousins. But John the Baptist didn’t see Jesus as the Messiah till now. He may have known Jesus was special, we don’t know. But here John the Baptist clearly announces Jesus and his mission: “The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”.
The sacrifice of a lamb to take away sins was a ritual every Jew of that time would have know extremely well. It was a daily practice in the temple and it was the cornerstone of the Passover feast. John’s disciples would have known exactly what John meant by this statement. They wouldn’t have known how the sacrifice of Jesus would occur, and they may have doubted John’s mental stability, but they would have known exactly what he meant.
Jesus was sent to sacrifice his life for the sin of others. Can I sacrifice my life, my desires, my selfish wants, my time, so others can have the life of Jesus? Can I accept a mission of sacrifice that Jesus accepted? I pray for the strength to do so. And will I recognize Jesus when he crosses my path? How long and how often is Jesus right next to me and I don’t realize it is him?
Lord, help me to see You, to know You, to recognize You, to accept You, and to sacrifice my life for others with You. Change me Lord, change me. *obbs*