He is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘A man is coming after me who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before me.’ [John 1:30 NLT]
John the Baptist was actually older than Jesus. Yet in this verse he speaks of the Messiah as one who existed before him. It is hard to know what was going through John's mind but it does seem that he embraced the idea that the Christ would be one who existed in some form before coming to earth.
Later in this gospel the apostle John records Jesus saying something similar when he spoke of existing before Abraham. There seemed to be an understanding that the Messiah was greater than a human being. There are other verses that teach this preexistence. It is hard to understand it with our brains.
Even so, it reminds of why so many follow Jesus Christ. He is more than a great teacher. Or insightful prophet. Or suffering savior. We follow Jesus because he alone can show us the Father. He alone knew the Father before his birth. In him we see what God is like because he existed long before us.
Open our eyes Father that we might see you in the life of the One existed long before us.
... this devotion is part of a series about John the Baptist.