“John came as a forerunner of Jesus. So, I think he should be considered greatest.” -Anonymous
“John may have come before Jesus, but the fact remains that he was a voice announcing Jesus. So, Jesus is definitely the greatest.” -Anonymous
The question of who is the greatest between John and Jesus seems to be an absurd one to some people but remains logical to others. Even in the Scripture, this question was brought up in a subtle way, but John’s testimony of Jesus as well as Jesus’ testimony of John gives the perfect answer.
The way the present world has been framed is such that the mindset of an average human is set to compete with whoever and whatever may seem to be excelling over him/her. This is what I consider quite absurd because I believe that such a mindset stems from ignorance of one’s purpose.
John the Baptist had a purpose for which he was sent by God, and so did Jesus Christ. Their purposes were not the same direction; one was to prepare the way of the other. What then? Is the one who was meant to prepare the way for the other worthy of comparison to the One whose way he’s to prepare?
From the onset of John’s ministry, he proclaimed boldly and without mincing words, that he was not the Christ, yet some of the people thought it needful to report to him when they saw that Jesus Christ had more people at His baptism than John the Baptist.
“Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before Him. He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy, therefore, is fulfilled.” – John 3:28 & 29
Jesus, knowing that He had greater witness than John still testified, “Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth. He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.” – John 5:33 & 35
The John-Jesus relationship was one of complementation, not competition. This is where many people fail today. Many people want to be regarded as the greatest, and this leads them to compete with the one they ought to complement. The God who created us has fashioned us in such a way that we are to help one another to fulfill His purpose for our lives.
We can think of it this way: which is the greatest between breathing in and breathing out? No answer?! The two complement each other. The world we are in is such that everyone gets involved in the rat race and wants to be the one mentioned when the question of “who is the greatest?” arises. This ought not to be!
Surely, you have been created for a purpose. Get close to God and know why He has created you. Only then will you find satisfaction in fulfilling His purpose for you even when you are not regarded as the greatest among men. Remember, true success lies in fulfilling purpose, not in outshining others.