Who Did You Go to See?

“Who did you go out to see?” was the question Jesus asked of the crowds around him in Matthew 11.  He goes on to ask if they went out to see someone swayed by the wind, or someone important and rich.  No, Jesus said, you went out to see a prophet, one who speaks the words of God.

So often we see the media being used to promote the latest trend, swayed by the winds of popular opinion.  We also see the news filled with the rich, the powerful and the famous.  People “go out” to see them and hear them.  They read their words and are influenced by the things they say and the image they project.

Yet in Matthew 3, we see that Jerusalem, all of Judea and all the district around the Jordan were going out to see John the Baptist. Jesus said the real reason John was so attractive to people was because he was a prophet.  It wasn’t his image or appearance, nor the trappings around him.  I, for one, am not a real fan of camel hair clothing nor locusts and honey for dinner!  

Even his message was a humbling one: Repent, for the Kingdom of God is coming. He spoke the words of God, the words of the kingdom. He wouldn’t be swayed by trends or opinion, nor bought with money.  This engendered great trust.  The message and the character of the man is what drew the people to John.  He then pointed them to Jesus and the Kingdom of God. 

This should be the aim of our communication. It should point people to Jesus, and the coming of the Kingdom of God in all areas of society. It should be about truth in the message, and the character of the messenger.  And, personally, I think it is just as well we don’t need to wear camels hair….