Why did John the Baptist ask Jesus, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another,” when He testified that Jesus was the “Lamb of God” earlier?

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When John the Baptist got imprisoned by king Herod, his captive life weighed heavily upon him. As week after week passed, bringing no change, he got discouraged especially when his disciples questioned if Jesus was the Messiah. His disciples probably wondered: why Jesus did nothing to release John? To John all this seemed a mystery. So, he sent a message to Jesus saying “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?”

The Savior did not at once answer the disciples’ question. As they stood waiting for an answer, “He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight” (Luke 7:21). At the end of the day, Jesus called John’s disciples to Him, and said, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me” (Luke 7:21-23). The evidence of Christ’s divinity was seen in serving humanity.

The disciples carried the message, and it was enough. Then, John recalled the prophecy concerning the Messiah, “The Lord hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (Isa. 61:1, 2).

The works of Christ not only declared Him to be the Messiah, but showed in what manner His kingdom was to be established.  His kingdom was not an earthly kingdom. Jesus came to serve humanity and die to redeem all. John’s faith in Christ was rekindled and his heart was enlightened with God’s love.

When we go through trials and tribulation like John, we are to remember all that Christ has done for us on the cross and in our lives. We need to reflect on the faithfulness of the Lord and His infinite love. We should not allow the trials to cloud God’s goodness. As we reflect on the Lord, discouragement and doubt will vanish and faith will be strengthened knowing that God works all things for the good for those that love Him (Romans 8:28).

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team


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