reply to post by ImaFungi
John the Baptist was Jesus' cousin, where his Mother Elizabeth was the cousin of Jesus' mother Mary. He was almost like an older brother to Jesus in
some ways and they both shared a powerful spirit of prophecy, which linked them together very closely. Jesus later said that John was the
reincarnation of the spirit of Elijah, which is interesting, because many centuries prior, a prophet called Elijah, and his initiate Elisha, had an
interaction at the very same place where John eventually baptised Jesus, at the Jordan River, where Elijah asked Elisha what Elisha wanted, to which
Elisha said he would like to have a double-portion of the spirit, but that promise went unfulfilled as Elijah was wisked away (in some form or
John was almost certinaly of the Essenian sect of Judiasm which was very orthodox (strict) and ascetic (pure, with lots of fasting, no alchohol, etc),
and intriguingly, his ministry was performed in the wilderness, meaning apart from the Temple, which had become corrupted by Roman Imperialism and a
very formalized religious doctrine of highly detailed legalism (where Jesus and John were people of the heart and soul).
John's ministry involved water baptism at the Jordan River, which is symbolic of full emersion into the spirit (zero point field?), and even a
foreshadowing of death and resurrection (where sin is left in the watery grave, the baptisee coming up out of the water, of forgiveness, into a new
life). John's baptism was one of repentance of the heart and the remission of sin, a foreshadowing of Jesus' Great Work ie: symbolic of death of the
sinful nature, and resurrection of a new creation and a new life.
As discussed earlier in this thread, John possessed foreknowledge of Jesus' coming, and was in effect paving the way with his ministry. Before Jesus
arrived, John referenced him in terms of his perfect righteousness, that Jesus was so good, and so much better than John, that John would not be fit
to undo his sandle strap. Jesus referred to John however as the best of the best of all people born of women, whereby Jesus considered himself, his
true and authentic self born of the spirit and from heaven (born again, from above).
When Jesus came onto the scene, John said "look, here comes the lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world" so John obviously knew beforehand,
just who and what Jesus was all about, and what his mission and purpose was and was to be.
When Jesus had been around for a while, John said of himself and his ministry that he needed to grow smaller so that Jesus and Jesus' ministry could
John spoke out against the King Herod, who stole and married his brother's wife (a grave sin and a violation of the law) and was imprisoned in Herod's
dungeon, where, after a time, he was beheaded over a type of "bet" of sorts whereby the King promised some little harlot named Salome up to half his
kindgom for a mere dance, and she asked, as part of a conspiracy with Herod's wife Herodias, when the dance was completed, for the head of John the
Baptist on a platter, which the King then ordered (probably with both reluctance and relief).
Upon getting the news of John's death, Jesus turned to face Jerusalem, more aware than ever of his fated calling and destiny.
The two of them probably calluded even to the degree that they both knew in advance what would be John's fate in Herod's dungeon.
When Jesus came to John who was baptising, and asked to be baptised, John said that it was he who needed baptism from Jesus, to which Jesus replied
"let's do what is right anyway" and at the moment of Jesus' baptism, John had a vision of a white dove-like spirit coming down from heaven and
settling on Jesus, along with the words heard "this is my son in whom I am well pleased".
When in prison John asked for a report about Jesus, just to make sure that everything was working out according to the prophecy, and Jesus sent back
word to John that miracles were happening and that the Good News of the Kingdom of Heaven was being preached to the poor.
John the Baptist is known as the forerunner to Jesus' ministry, and as I've outlined, helped to generate the spirit of prophecy as a future domain
within and through which Jesus performed his Great Work.
Again, to get all this, you need to read the Gospels, which isn't hard to do.. but I hope that helps, at least in part.
edit on 12-8-2012 by NewAgeMan because: typos fixed