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Defending the Kingdom

In today’s Gospel verses, Jesus is teaching all about John the Baptist and his vital mission here on earth. Jesus also explains the impact of others’ attitudes and behaviors of violence to the kingdom of God and affirms that John the Baptist is the greatest by saying, “Amen, I say to you, among those born of women, there has been none greater than John the Baptist.”

As we know and understand from the Gospel readings, John began preaching until this point when Jesus was speaking and sharing that God’s kingdom rule is being attacked and subjected to evil and violence, apparently by people like Herod (Matthew 2:1-12, 16-18). In other words, Jesus is teaching that people here on earth will hate the kingdom of God with such odium and evil that they will make every effort to obstruct its progress and to stop any attempts of goodness, kindness and love.

As children of God, we understand how critical it is for us to walk in the path of kindness and love as John the Baptist. As we reflect on this Gospel reading, we understand that we have been asked to be disciples of Jesus, like John the Baptist, to share the good news of the Lord and to be loving and kind to all of God’s children.

In verses 14-15, Jesus continues to preach that “all the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah, who is to come. Whoever has ears, let them hear.” At this point, one realizes and can clearly understand that John’s role is the pinnacle of all the prophets; John the Baptist is the one who is to come to prepare the way for Jesus (Matthew 3:1-17), our Lord, the King.

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