*For anyone just joining us, this post is in conjunction with the Jesus Book Club (so named by Brandy)- a casual group reading books about Christ. Feel free to jump in and read with us, or just comment on the discussion. *
Am I the only one who loves the picture we get here of John the Baptist? He’s so hardcore, so blunt to the Pharisees and Sadducees, so genuine and pure in his message of repentance. I love that he so obviously didn’t care about dressing nice or impressing people, he was all about his message.
This really struck me: “The spirit of his demands was that of a practical religion, the only religion of any possible worth- the religion of right living”. So much of what Christ taught hinges on this- don’t just not commit adultery, don’t even think lustful thoughts, etc. It’s not just about saying the right things on Sunday, but doing and thinking the right things, becoming better and better.
I found the section of Christ’s baptism really instructional- I find it fascinating that John knew Jesus to be sinless but most likely did not know that He as the Savior, until the sign of the dove. It makes me wonder if Elizabeth had not shared with her son the events surrounding his cousin’s birth- I’m assuming from this she had not, but it seems weird that she wouldn’t have, knowing that John also had an ordained role to perform. Maybe she was supposed to let him figure it out for himself.
And the temptations. If you haven’t listened to Jeffrey R. Holland’s talk The Inconvenient Messiah, do it! It’s available through LDS Voices on iTunes. Or if it’s not, let me know and I’ll make you a copy if you want it. It sheds incredible light on the temptations, and on applications to our lives. So good. But from the book-
“It was a necessary result of our Lord’s dual nature, comprising the attributes of both God and man, that He should endure and suffer as a mortal while possessing at all times the ability to invoke the power of His own Godhood by which all bodily needs could be supplied or overcome.”
That, combined with the fact that He was tempted “in all points”, is truly awe inspiring.