John 1 29-34

The very next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and yelled out, “Here he is, God’s Passover Lamb! He forgives the sins of the world! This is the man I’ve
been talking about, ‘the One who comes after me but is really ahead of me.’ I knew nothing about who he was—only this: that my task has been to get Israel ready to recognise him as the God-Revealer. That is why I came here baptising with water, giving you a good bath and scrubbing sins from your life so you can get a fresh start with God.”

John clinched his witness with this: “I watched the Spirit, like a dove flying down out of the sky, making himself at home in him. I repeat, I know nothing about him except this: The One who authorised me to baptise with water told me, ‘The One on whom you see the Spirit come down and stay, this One will baptise with the Holy Spirit.’ That’s exactly what I saw happen, and I’m telling you, there’s no question about it: This is the Son of God.”

Gospel Reflection

I have a friend Susan who says her husband always remembers a face but seldom a name. So when they go to a social event and approach someone whose name he should know but doesn’t remember, they have devised a social strategy that works for them. He places his hand gently in the small of her back and guides her toward the person with these words “This is my wife, Susan.” Anyone with any manners at all is going to respond by giving their own name. Not many people are going to just stare at Susan until it becomes awkwardly clear that her husband has no recollection of their name. I’ll bet that any of you reading this would respond by putting out your hand, shaking her hand, and saying, with a gracious smile, “It’s nice to meet you, Susan. My name is ………..”

Our text for today has John introducing Jesus to some of his (John’s) disciples, with the description: “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” This is a “revelation formula” John likes to use when recounting people’s interactions with Jesus in his gospel. In 1:49, Nathanael introduces Jesus to his view of him: “Rabbi, you are the Son of God!” In 19:24-27 Jesus himself, dying on the cross, introduces his mother to the disciple whom he loved and vice versa. “Woman, here is your son. . . . Here is your mother.”