“He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.”
John the Baptist was the last of the Old Testament prophets. Not only that, but he was the greatest prophet who ever lived. His life and ministry were not just significant; they were super significant.
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In his day John was a figure of national prominence. It is worth noting that the ancient historian Josephus wrote more about the life of John the Baptist than about Jesus Christ. John was so well known, so popular and revolutionary, that some even thought he was the Messiah.
The Bible says of John, “This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light” (John 1:7–8).
That all through him might believe . . . The word him is not referring to Jesus but to John. It’s saying that John was not the light; he was just bearing witness of the light. And it is also saying that through him people might believe. In other words, God was working through John.
John was a popular man. A lot of people admired him. If John had wanted it, he could have been a great leader. He could have made a lot of money. But John knew that is not what it was about. He was there to point people to Jesus. He used his popularity and the momentum God had given him to point people in the right direction.
You have a certain group of people that you influence. You have people in your family. You have people in your neighborhood. You have people in your workplace who look up to you. They respect your opinion. You can take the influence that God has given you and use it for His glory.