It is hard to imagine the impact of John the Baptist in our culture today. We have street corner “prophets” of a sort today, but they are speaking a foreign spiritual language to those walking by. It is hit or miss, but mostly miss.
John spoke in the voice of the prophets (especially Elijah) who would have been the heroes and heralds of hope in the days of Jesus. John’s renewal movement within Judaism piqued the interest of everyone. His disciples were ready for something new and looking for the return of the reign of Yahweh (The Creator God as revealed in the Bible). They would do whatever it took to prepare the way for the Messiah. The religious establishment was intrigued, but not repentant. The Tetrarch (King over 1/4 of the region) Herod Antipas didn’t like John’s meddling with his marital goals.
Does John have a word for you? Are you Repentant or Resistant or Rebellious? What does that even mean?