Q. on John the Baptist

Jesus said,
11: Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Yet tradition tells us that St John the baptist received sanctifying grace when Mary visited Elizabeth and the babe leapt in her womb.
How is it that anyone in the kingdom of Heaven is greater than he? He was in the kingdom of heaven whilst in his mothers womb.
Any light shed on this question would be appreciated.

[quote=John Russell Jr]Jesus said,
11: Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Yet tradition tells us that St John the baptist received sanctifying grace when Mary visited Elizabeth and the babe leapt in her womb.
How is it that anyone in the kingdom of Heaven is greater than he? He was in the kingdom of heaven whilst in his mothers womb.
Any light shed on this question would be appreciated.
[/quote]

In context Jesus was speaking about John the Baptist as a prophet. He was not comparing the Baptist to his own mother.

Maggie

What I’m trying to say is that the kingdom of Heaven is the Church. And St John the baptist was a member of the Church whilst still in his mothers womb. So we are not greater than him. I just find it hard to understand.

[quote=John Russell Jr]What I’m trying to say is that the kingdom of Heaven is the Church. And St John the baptist was a member of the Church whilst still in his mothers womb. So we are not greater than him. I just find it hard to understand.
[/quote]

Jesus is talking about heaven proper (in otherwords, where we go when we die . . . hopefully!).

Think of the kingdom of heaven as the Church. The Church is the kingdom established by Jesus. Those that are members of Christ’s Church are privileged and blessed in a way that John the Baptist never enjoyed. We receive the body, blood, soul, and divinity of our Savior in the Eucharist. In this sense we are all privileged beyond the special blessings uniquely extended to John the Baptist.

I thought it was a reference ot the people in heaven, and how extremely pure one has to be to make it to heaven. Not to imply that John the Baptist was not one of the most righteous people to walk the planet. Only that they say even the righteous on earth falls about seven times a day. And those in heaven are purified from all sin and more than sin, from imperfection of any sort too before they get in there…just my stab in the dark…

[quote=John Russell Jr]What I’m trying to say is that the kingdom of Heaven is the Church. And St John the baptist was a member of the Church whilst still in his mothers womb. So we are not greater than him. I just find it hard to understand.
[/quote]

except that the Church was not started until after the death, resurrection and ascension into heaven of Jesus. The birthday of the Church is Pentecost Sunday. John the Baptist was well and truly dead at that point. He was the greatest of the saints under the Old Covenant.

Maggie

Christ was pointing out John as the last among the People of God who’s membership is a matter of bloodline.
secondarily it’s also a physical reality that share union with the spritual reality of the changing of ages.
In a wisdom book in the OT it says; PP:" you can tell the works of God because they come in pairs and opposites"
John and Jesus represent the opposing forces of the beginning and the end of an age. Typified by the serpent swallowing it’s tail in pagan myth. And it does that continuously untill the tail is anthropamorphized in Mary’s womb and becomes the heel that crushes the head attempting to swallow up the end again. The loop of the rosary shows that. The incarnation begins the line of Christ’s life to the cross that gets us out of that viscious cylce of Satan’s trap. The people of God xperienced a new revelation of God at these times that wasn’t swallowed up in the emotional baggage that misinterprets the past like the pagans but remembered reverently as the Word of God from a son of man. Events that echo the past recalling the person of Adam the ancient of days who reestablishes the proper goals and directs his people on the straight path for the new age. [font=Arial] [/font]The opposite elements of revelation among some and confusion among others is part of that duality too.This duality is always a part of the turning of an age. Archetypes in scripture are Adam and Eve,Eve and Satan, Cain and Abel, Jacob and Esau, Elija and Jezebel, Elija and Elisha, David and Goliath ,David and Jonathan, Moses and Pharoe, Samson and Delilah, Hosea and Gomer, Martha and Mary, John and Jesus, Christ and anti-christ. The culture of death and the culture of life. The Marriage of the Lamb. Notice in the birth of esau and Jacob a similar unfolding of events as Paul describes betweenth appearing of the man of sin and Christ at the parousia.
How many statements they both made alluding to this; I must grow smaller He must grow greater. John is the fulfillment of the OT prophets yet least of those parallell in the next age. John is the greatest prophet yet performs no miracles.

33For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ 34The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and “sinners.” ’ 35But wisdom is proved right by all her children.”

What have i done? I indulged babblous speach !

Anyway if you look for that opposing duality you’ll begin noticing it throughout scripture.Then maybe in your own circumstances.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.