John the Baptist was born as a miracle to elderly parents six months before Jesus. He was not named after his father because an angel visited him and told him he was to be called John instead (Luke 1:13). So there must then be a deep meaning to this name, right? So what does the name John mean? And what does that have to do with us?
The English name John is the transliteration of the Greek name Ioannes, and the Greek name Ioannes is the transliteration of the Hebrew name Johanan. John/Johanan means “God is gracious”. God is indeed gracious to send Jesus [meaning God saves].
The sole purpose of the life of John the Baptist was to prepare the way for Jesus. He pointed out to his disciples “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29, NIV)
God is gracious
Our God is gracious. This knowledge makes my spirit soar. God loves us and has done amazing things so that each of us could be saved and united with him forever. The road has been prepared from start to finish. As Isaiah 30:18 points out, the Lord waits [expectantly] and longs to be gracious to you. All we need to do is to accept his invitation to Jesus.
So we have much to celebrate. God is gracious to us every day of our lives. Also today and right now. Let’s turn to him and commune with him, ask what kind of tasks he has for us today. Because we are not here by accident. God has called us to live for purpose too.
Thank you for being gracious to us and sending Jesus to save us.
How amazing you are to plan this detailed plan to rescue us.
We bless you and we praise you.
Show each of us what you have planned for us to do.
Empower us to point to Jesus with everything we do.
In Jesus’ name,
Isn’t it amazing? Every little detail of God’s salvation plan is perfect. That includes us too. We are here for a holy purpose. And that is exciting. May God lead us clearly and empower us mightily! Be abundantly blessed, my fellow pilgrim!