Sunday Scripture Readings: Isaiah 40.1-5, 9-11; 2 Peter 3.8-14; Mark 1.1-8
“One more powerful than I will come after me.”
Like the prophet Elijah, John the Baptist haunt the wilderness. Like Elijah, who discovered God speaking not in storms and lightning but in silence, the Baptist in the silence of his wilderness life senses God is coming among the people in a new way. His preaching and baptizing bring people into the wilderness and ready them for this breakthrough. His baptism washes away a past of simply keeping and breaking the law and symbolizes openness to the reviving Spirit of God.
John promises one more powerful than he is coming. He envisions that this coming figure will also baptize but with the Holy Spirit. Baptism in the Holy Spirit will create people anew more wholly than water cleanses and invigorates.
What do you need to wash away to open yourself to God’s reviving Spirit this Advent season?
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