By Fr. Joseph DeFrancisco
St. John the Baptist was a prophet/messenger of God calling the Hebrew people to a new spiritual re-birth. As the familiar cliché states, “radical times call for radical measures.” John believed that the world would soon be blest with the coming of the Messiah. The world’s “Redemption” was close at hand.
Would the Hebrew people be ready religiously and spiritually to accept the consequences of this saving event? John’s answer was to preach a message of personal reform and repentance. “The Kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe.” (Matt. 4:17)
Once the Hebrews heard this invitation and made a personal commitment to a deeper religious and spiritual change of heart, John plunged them into the waters of the Jordan River. This could be a new beginning, a new path to a life that Jesus would soon create for them.
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