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John the Immerser

Matthew 3:1-6

It was during those days that Yochanan the Immerser arrived in the desert of Y’hudah and began proclaiming the message, “Turn from your sins to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near!” This is the man Yesha‘yahu was talking about when he said,

“The voice of someone crying out: ‘In the desert prepare the way of Adonai! Make straight paths for him!’”

Yochanan wore clothes of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. People went out to him from Yerushalayim, from all Y’hudah, and from the whole region around the Yarden. Confessing their sins, they were immersed by him in the Yarden River.

John the Baptist, as he is known today, was most likely part of the Essene Community. They lived at Qumran and were known to be a community that performed many mikvahs (Jewish cleansing). A mikvah is a full immersion in moving water in order to be made clean from an impurity. There is a thought that John may have eaten date honey and carob pods as these were readily available in the area. Those are just a few details we learned as we lived in Israel.

The question I want you to consider is, "Why was John the Immerser immersing people before Jesus was known to be the Messiah? What purpose was there of a 'baptism' if they were not going to be following Jesus yet?" I have my thoughts, but that is not the purpose of this blog. This needs to be be short and just a detail, with a question to ponder.

May Holy Spirit reveal new Truth and insight to you as you continue to read the Word.

Love and blessings,


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