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Christmas Devotion

Are You a Forerunner of the Prince of Peace?

By Brian Simmons

Do you know what a forerunner is? Are you one? says a forerunner is “a person or thing coming in advance to herald the arrival of someone or something.”

Two thousand years ago, an angel of the Lord announced to a very old man, Zechariah, that his yet-born-child would “go before the Lord as a forerunner”—as a person coming in advance to announce the arrival of someone else.

That someone else was Jesus!

When Zechariah’s son, John, began his ministry, the apostle John records that he described it in this way: “I am fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy: ‘I am an urgent, thundering voice shouting in the desert—clear the way and prepare your hearts for the coming of the Lord Yahweh!’” (John 1:23, TPT)

John made it clear he was not the Anointed One come to bring the world; he was his forerunner, the one who came to clear the way and prepare people’s hearts for his coming. And when the Lord did come, John got out to the way and turned all eyes on Jesus: “Look! There he is—God’s Lamb! He will take away the sins of the world!” (John 1:29)

For years John carried with him the message about what Jesus would do: rescue the world and put it back together again by taking away our sins. Isaiah says such people who carry good news, proclaim peace, bear good tidings, and preach salvation from mountain to mountain have “beautiful feet.”

John’s feet were beautiful because he was a forerunner—running before the Prince of Peace to announce his coming peace. Are yours as beautiful? Are you a forerunner of the Lord, like John?

Do you know the Bible describes one other person as a forerunner? Who do you think it was? Yes, Jesus Christ himself! Read how the author of Hebrews describes our Lord:

“We have this certain hope like a strong, unbreakable anchor holding our souls to God himself. Our anchor of hope is fastened to the mercy seat that sits in the heavenly realm beyond the sacred threshold, and where Jesus, our Forerunner, has gone in before us. He is now and forever our Royal Priest like Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 6:19-20)

Jesus is our forerunner because “he has entered once and forever into the Holiest Sanctuary of All, not with the blood of animal sacrifices, but the sacred blood of his own sacrifice. And he alone has made our salvation secure forever!” (Hebr. 9:12)

Because of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection we have been declared not guilty through our faith in him—which has brought us peace with God. Because he was pierced for our rebellion and crushed for our sins, we have peace and we’ve been healed!

This message of peace and healing is the message John carried with him into his world. We are invited to follow his lead by carrying that same message of peace and healing with us as well.

This Christmas, may you shout from the rooftops or the mountains that the Savior of the world has been born. May you carry to the people in your life the same peace you’ve experienced by announcing the arrival of Prince of Peace—so that your feet are declared as beautiful as John’s!

Excerpted from Brian Simmons and THE PASSION TRANSLATION.
Copyright © 2014 by Brian Simmons. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved. Interview with Brian Simmons

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Brian SimmonsBrian Simmons and his wife Candice have been described as true pioneers in ministry. Their teaching has opened doors in many nations to the Gospel. For the last forty years, Brian has been a linguist, pastor, missionary, and speaker and now brings all those gifts together to lead the translation work for The Passion Translation.

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