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January 08, 2022

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DG BookGospel: John 3:22-30
After this, Jesus went into the territory of Judeawith his disciples. He stayed there with them and
baptized.John was also baptizing in Aenon, near Salim, where waterwas plentiful; people came
to him and were baptized. Thishappened before John was put in prison.Now John’s disciples had

been questioned by a Jew aboutspiritual cleansing, so they came to John and said, “Rabbi,the one who was with
you across the Jordan, and aboutwhom you spoke favorably, is now baptizing, and all aregoing to him.”John answered,
“No one can receive anything, exceptwhat has been given to him from heaven. You yourselvesare my witnesses that
I said, ‘I am not the Christ, but I havebeen sent before him.’ Only the bridegroom has the bride;but the friend of the
bridegroom stands by and listens, andrejoices to hear the bridegroom’s voice. My joy is now full. Itis necessary
that he increase, but that I decrease.”

 

Reflection:

John the Baptist was theJohn the Baptist was thesignifier
(= the voice) pointingto the signified (= Christ). Andonce the
signified arrives, thesignifier must retreat. Johnknew this very
well and playedhis role to perfection. “He mustincrease, and
I must decrease,”so did John declare, so didhe carry it out;
and he had noregrets doing so, only sense offulfilment.
Unfortunately, manysignifiers in the spiritual worldhave difficulty
ceding the placeto the signified when the latterarrives or people
arrive at thesignified. There is a pleasure inbeing the focus of
attention, andhence, it is a real temptation todelay the arrival of
the signifiedor even block it. Dying to self is ahard act. John
practised this arsmoriendi, the art of dying. Nowonder Jesus
would say laterthat there was no one amongthose born of woman
greaterthan John!

 

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