As a believer, there are many verses in the Bible that speak to my heart, but one of my all-time favorites is found early in John’s Gospel. Although it might seem like a simple aside in the narrative, this verse encapsulates the gospel message in just 14 words.
Amidst the majestic description of the eternal Word that was with God and was God from the beginning, John speaks of the testimony of John the Baptist. John preached in the wilderness and was baptized in the Jordan River, causing a stir among the religious leaders of his time. They wondered if he was the long-awaited Messiah, the king of Israel from David’s line.
However, John the Baptist knew his role was to prepare the way for the promised Rescuer. Then, the day finally came when he saw Jesus and cried out, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29 CSB)
These powerful words, “Look, the Lamb of God,” evoke a sense of awe and wonder. For centuries, the people of God had anticipated the arrival of the Messiah, studying the Scriptures and examining the prophecies handed down by the prophets. The anticipation grew, and many wondered when the promised one would come.
When John the Baptist appeared as a voice crying out in the wilderness, the excitement was palpable. And at last, he proclaimed the arrival of the Lamb of God. The feelings of those who heard this must have been a mix of excitement, fear, and relief. The Messiah was finally here, and God’s promises would be fulfilled.
In these 14 words, we find the essence of the gospel. Jesus, the promised one, came into the world to live among us and to die on the cross for our sins. He came not just to rescue us but also to save the world from sin.
As believers, we can look forward to the day when we will join multitudes in singing praises to the Lamb, as described in Revelation 5:12: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slaughtered to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing.”
While we wait for the fulfillment of all God’s promises, our anticipation grows. However, we can remain confident in our faith as we behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.