John the Baptist came preaching from the wilderness, eating locusts and honey wearing a camel hair coat with a leather belt. He was Jesus Christ’s first cousin filled with the Holy Ghost, even the spirit and power of Elijah, from birth. (Luke 1:15 & 17) He was the greatest of all the prophets, yet he who is least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than John The Baptist. (Luke 7:28) God’s whole purpose for John was to preach repentance and to prepare the way for his cousin. John knew Jesus was a good man, but he did not know he was the Messiah until the dove descended upon Him. (John 1:30-33)
John states, ” I indeed baptize you with water; but there cometh he that is mightier than I, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and in fire.” (Luke 3:16)
John met a martyr’s death while Jesus for 3 years, went on with 12 core disciples, preaching the Kingdom of Heaven is near, proving His ministry with miracles such as raising the dead, healing the sick, deaf, dumb and blind and even walking on water. He was fulfilling prophecy after prophecy, which of course culminated in His death at the cross and subsequent resurrection to life, and ultimate ascension to heaven, where He is now seated at the right hand of the Father.
Jesus speaking with Nicodemus says in John 3:3, ” Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Can you see it? You must repent, this was John The Baptist’s message! Now please remember what John The Baptist had said about Jesus, why He was greater? Jesus again speaking with Nicodemus in John 3:5 says, ” Except a man be born of water and of the spirit, he can not enter into the kingdom of God.”
John 16:7 ” Neverthless I tell you the truth: It is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” Jesus is taking about the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead. John 7:38-39. “ He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)”
Jesus came and died for our sins, He was the perfect Lamb that appeased God so that any who believe on Him will be saved. The blood of Christ, the atonement for your and my sins becomes our righteousness before God. John the Baptist preached repentance and baptism. Jesus taught that the law could be fulfilled by loving God with all you heart, mind and soul; and love your neighbour as yourself.(Matthew 22:37-39) John preached stay away from sin and do good, Christ expanded on it teaching peace and forgiving your enemy, do good to those who hate you.(Matthew 5:44) But Jesus promised more, He promised the supernatural revelation and relationship of Him in you, with the Father. John 14:5 ” At that day ye shall know that I am in my father, and ye in me, and I in you.” In fact He really saying that it was better for us, that He should leave, that way the Holy Spirit would be able to be poured out. It was of more benefit for Christ to be in Heaven. Do you have the Holy Spirit? Does Jesus dwell with you, and you with him? The Holy Spirit is not our forgiveness with God, because that is what the blood of Jesus has done for us, if you believe; Christ’s blood is your righteousness before God.
James 2:19 ” Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?”
Is your faith in God based on yourself, and what you do and have done, or is it based in relationship and revelation by the power of the Holy Spirit? We are not all called to do the same things, we need to be prayerfully seeking God. We need to be doing things out of relationship with Him through the Holy Spirit.
Matthew 7:21-23 ” Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my farther in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And I will declare to them, ‘ I never knew “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare unto them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!”
So how can the least in kingdom of God been greater than John The Baptist, who was the greatest of all the prophet’s? Because they have the Holy Spirit! Because they have a part of the Godhead residing within them, not of themselves, but the Holy Spirit. Hence God in you and you in God. The baptism of the Holy Ghost, with the evidence of speaking in unknown tongues. Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God(1 Cor 15:50). Where once the prophets believed God and pleased him, and by faith and at times the Holy Spirit, we know they achieved many feats, Hebrews 11. But now we have relationship by the Holy Spirit with Jesus, who has bought our righteousness for us with His own blood; and also when we die; we shall be resurrected as He was, and be with Him for eternity.
“ But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” (1 Cor 1:30)
To see the Kingdom of God(John 3.3) we must be born again. So by the Holy Spirit we receive faith and wisdom(the fear of God Pro 9:10) and are counted righteous; because of our belief or faith through His blood at Calvary. When we are born of water and the Spirit(John 3.5) we enter into the Kingdom of God and the process of sanctification or being made holy begins, which ultimately leads to redemption or freedom from our sinful state. An Apostolic Doctrine of Salvation reads like Acts 2:38. Repentance, baptism by full immersion at an age of understanding and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit(Baptism of the Holy Ghost) with the evidence of Speaking in Tongues.