The Voice of One Crying in the Wilderness

The Great Commission

“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand! For this is He ( John the Baptist) who was spoken of by the Prophet Isaiah: saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make His path straight” (Matthew 3:2,3).

The Bible tells us that John the Baptist went before the Lord preparing His way. He preached repentance to all those that would listen. He preached in the wilderness of Judea saying “Repent for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” Many came to him at the Jordan River, confessed their sins, and were baptized.

Israel was being offered the Kingdom of Heaven. John, as the forerunner of Christ, was preparing Israel for the arrival of their Messiah to “make His path straight.”

I was reminded of the words of Isaiah in our title several years ago while attending a country fair. I was there to set up a booth at the fair for our company. There were many people walking about as I entered the fairgrounds. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, I felt great sorrow and loneliness. I couldn’t understand why I felt this way; there was nothing going on in my life that might cause such feelings. In fact, I was looking forward to the days ahead. I’ll never forget what happened next. The Lord brought to mind those words from Isaiah “The voice of one crying in the wilderness.”

I believe that the Lord was showing me that the Great Commission was just like John the Baptist’s arrival on the scene announcing the Kingdom of Heaven. There is a great sadness for the world today when we see the need of all those we come across that do not know the Lord and the life only the Lord can provide for them; there is a sadness or crying out in our spirit for all those that do not know the Way.

This world is a wilderness to those that do not know the Lord. It is a fallen world inhabited by a fallen race with sin dominating the vast majority of those in the world. It is truly a wilderness that can only be changed by the power of the Gospel.

As we walk out this life serving Him and sharing the Gospel, we are crying out to a lost and dying world. Great sadness can be felt by us because of the lost condition of those we come across. We can see it as a wilderness that is in desperate need of all the Lord offers.

So, our voice cries out to all the lost, saying “Repent for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” The Lord gave all those that know Him the command to reach out to all those lost in the wilderness of sin in the Great Commission as the following verses tell us:

And Jesus came and said to them, All authority in Heaven and in earth has been given to Me. Go therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit: teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you: and behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:18-20).

We walk with the Lord and seek Him in all that we do. We have great joy in knowing that we know Him and He knows us. However, as we look around at those that are lost and do not know the Lord; we have great sorrow, and know that we are walking through a wilderness. We call out to all those that might listen and come into the Kingdom it cost the Lord so much to provide. He laid down His life for us that we might be forgiven, become children of God, and joint-heirs with Christ. Jesus points to the cross and acknowledges all those that receive him as friends in John chapter 15 verse 13 as follows:

“Greater love has no man than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

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