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John the Baptist

John was the only son of the priest Zacharias and his wife Elisabeth. John's mother Elisabeth, a descendant of the daughters of Aaron, was considered barren. Elisabeth was also a cousine to Mary, the mother of Jesus.

John's father Zacharias, a descendant of Aaron through Abia, was working as a priest before God and had as his duty to burn incense in the temple of God. Luke 1:5-9

The birth of John was considered a miracle at the time. Not only was his mother Elisabeth barren, but Johns parents was already old when he was born. Further the birth of John (and his name) was announced to Zacharias by an angel of God resulting in Zacharias being dumb until the day John was circumcised and named. Luke 1:57-64

The name John was special, because normally in Israel at this time children was named after one of their ancestors, but none of Zacharias or Elisabeths forefathers that was named John.

John's Work

John the Baptist was preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, saying Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Mat 3:1-3

John wore clothing made of camel's hair and had a belt of leather. Mat 3:4 He ate locusts and wild honey. Mar 1:6

John preached. He said that there would come another person after him that would be mightier than himself. Mar 1:7 He said that while he was baptizing people in water, the one to come after him would baptize them in the holy ghost. Mar 1:8

And people came to him from Jerusalem, from all of Judaea and from the region around the Jordan river and was baptized by him in the Jordan river, confessing their sins.Mat 3:5-6

He baptized Jesus in the Jordan river. Mark 1:9

John's life ended in prison. He was beheaded on the order of king Herod due to a promise the king had made to the daughter of Herodias his wife.Mar 6:17-28

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