Jesus declares that none was greater than His cousin, John, known as 'the Baptist.' Jesus clearly says that John fulfilled the prophesied role of Elijah to come.
Prophets, even though they may bring new messages, stay consistent with existing Scripture and doctrine as they speak on behalf of God.
We can draw several lessons from Elijah, particularly his belief that he was the only one left whom God could use. God is always doing more than we are aware.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that disciples of Christ should expect persecution, often from people we normally would feel comfort and protection from, such as members from our own family. The two-edged sword (the Word of God) divides families because recepti. . .
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that Jesus was baptized, not because He had committed any sin, but in order to fulfill God's Commandments of righteousness. Baptism is used symbolically to represent one's total commitment. Perhaps if people knew what was require. . .
Christ empowers His disciples to preach and heal. He is saying there will be an incomplete work of healing and preaching in the run-up to His return.
John Ritenbaugh emphasizes that commandment breaking is what has scatterred the greater church of God. We have allowed the self-assured Laodicean mindset (with its ignorance and spiritual blindness) to deter us from overcoming and law keeping. In the parab. . .
Early converts from Judaism claimed to accept the Law but had difficulty accepting the Lawgiver. Today, many claim to accept Christ, but will not accept His Law.
The Jews believed that they had a natural right to the privileges of God's kingdom. They called themselves, therefore, "the children of the kingdom."
John identifies Christ as co-eternal with the Father, equal in character, but subordinate in authority. Christ's sonship was unique; He was the 'only Begotten Son.'
Fruit is not produced immediately; it is produced only when a plant is both mature and stable enough that mere survival is no longer its top priority.
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