A forerunner is some who goes before to prepare for those coming. It can also be someone who is a sign or a warning of something to come.
We know from Hebrews 6:13-20 (NKJV), “For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”
According to Hebrews 6, Christ is in the Holy place as Head of the body of believers. John the Baptist is known as the forerunner who announced to the world that Jesus was the ONE they had waited for. Jesus was Messiah.
Isaiah, 700 years prior to the birth of Jesus announced there would be a forerunner who would speak of THE one to come.
Isaiah 40:3-5 (NKJV)
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make straight in the desert
A highway for our God.
Every valley shall be exalted
And every mountain and hill brought low;
The crooked places shall be made straight
And the rough places smooth;
The glory of the Lord shall be revealed,
And all flesh shall see it together;
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
John the Baptist was the one who came before Jesus to announce His coming. According to Hebrews 6:20, Jesus was/is the ultimate forerunner who ascended into heaven as high priest. Jesus prepares the way for OUR coming. For each one of us, Jesus has prepared our eternal home.
That gives me great comfort! My dad ‘passed over’ when I was 34 years old. The year was 1987. I am comforted that Jesus had a special place prepared for him. Jesus prepared the way for his coming.
One of my personal favorite scriptures is found in Isaiah 40:31 (NKJV):
“But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.”
Isaiah’s call was/is intended to give faith and hope to the weary. As we wait, our strength will be renewed. I see Isaiah’s words as being all encompassing. They give an earthly promise that as we wait and pray that loved ones will come to hope, healing, and even as we wait to know the plan God has for us, our strength is renewed. Isaiah’s promise also speaks to our waiting to see Jesus when we pass over. The words refer to individuals and also groups. Entire countries can wait for their strength to be renewed.
Part of the ‘wait’ referred to the promise of a Messiah. Prophets spoke of the one who would come. Israel had waited, but the one who came was not what they expected. The one who came was a baby born in Bethlehem of Judea. He became a boy that grew up in Nazareth. He was the son of a carpenter. This was the one John the Baptist introduced to them.
In Matthew 3:1-3 (NKJV), we read, “In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying:
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make His paths straight.’ ”
John the Baptist quoted the words spoken by the prophet in Isaiah 40:3 “prepare the way of the Lord”.
While there were poor needy common people who believed because of the miracles they saw, the religious establishment rejected him because He wasn’t what they expected. The forerunner John the Baptist wasn’t what they expected. According to the Gospel of Luke, John’s Mother was Elizabeth who was a relative of Mary the Mother of Jesus (Luke 1:36).
So, the Pharisees and Sadducees (religious establishment of the day) would have known that John the Baptist was related to Jesus. Even in today’s world, we would be tempted to say, “well, John IS his cousin.”
That’s exactly what the Pharisees said.
As it turns out, while John was related to Jesus, he was also sent by God to announce the ONE who was coming.
In addition to that, the way I see heaven is Jesus stood at the gate announcing my dad’s entrance. I know when my time comes, Jesus will be there. He will speak my name because He KNOWS me. He will open the gate, take my hand, and walk me in. Then, I will see my dad. My dad and everyone else who has gone before me will stand in the presence of God (Father, Son, Spirit).
It just doesn’t get any better than that.
In Jesus, Deb