“The voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Make ready the way of the LORD, make His path straight. Every path will be filled, and every mountain brought low; the crooked will become straight, and the rough roads smooth; and all flesh will see the salvation of God.'” (3:4-6)
How does John prepare the way for Jesus? He calls for people to repent, change, not rely on their Hebrew blood to save them.
“Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father,’ for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham.” (3:8)
And what’s more:
“Indeed the axe is already laid at the root of the trees; so every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” (3:9)
This invokes the correct response: “Then what shall we do?” (3:10) and John is able to answer them accordingly, personally.
Yes, the way is being made. The Kingdom of Heaven is coming to earth and each person must make space for it. No sliding in due to race or societal standing. The tax collector, the soldier—heck, the person with two tunics—must make a decision.
Jesus has arrived. At His baptism, the LORD confirms Him; speaking from heaven, calling Him “My beloved Son”, and the Spirit ascends as a dove. A month and a half later, He announces Himself to His hometown, Nazareth; declaring His fulfilling of Isaiah 61:1-2.
He makes me weak in the knees. After long seasons in the Old Testament, the gospel accounts of Jesus make me weepy. He came for us all. He even points out to His fellow Nazarenes how the prophets were a blessing to Gentiles (4:26-27). He has been for all people from the beginning.
Soak it all in. Every word Jesus says. The way He responds to everyone personally. He is our example, our king, older brother, Lord and Savior! Take notes! What sticks out to you?