Jesus’ Surprising Response to Doubt
by Tim Arndt
When I think of John the Baptist, I think of a strong man of God, someone with unmatched faith.
Other Biblical heroes have obvious flaws: Abraham’s cowardice, David’s lust, and Jonah’s rebellion. But John seems to be set apart from all of them. He was a prophet in the wilderness. He called out the sins of Kings and prestigious religious leaders. He was so great, he was called the second Elijah. Perhaps his greatest feat was baptizing Jesus himself.
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” –Matthew 3:13-14
(This is important) He recognizes who Jesus is. He knows Jesus is the Messiah.
But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented. And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased. -Matthew 3:15-17
Can you imagine this experience? People talk about having amazing spiritual experiences, but John’s experience blows away any I’ve heard. Imagine watching the Spirit descend like a dove and hearing the voice of God proudly declare “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
Surely, in that moment, John had no doubts as to who Jesus was. And we would think that after having an experience like that, John couldn’t possibly ever have any doubts.
But that’s not what happened…