This is the testimony of John.
When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to him
to ask him, “Who are you?”
He admitted and did not deny it, but admitted,
“I am not the Christ.”
So they asked him,
“What are you then? Are you Elijah?”
And he said, “I am not.”
“Are you the Prophet?”
He answered, “No.”
So they said to him,
“Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us?
The Gospel reading is all about John the Baptist answering questions about who he is to the priests. In their interrogation of him, they are trying to define him, figure out his place in relation to their roles, beliefs, and culture. Interrogations can seem a bit harsh, but they are most times useful. They are a quest for knowledge, and for truth. In reading about the two Saints Basil and Gregory, they spent their lives investigating Christ to find the truth about Christ. They are the early Doctors of the Church that answered so many questions about who Christ is. It was through them that the Nicene Creed was written. They were the ones that debated and defeated the Arian heresy. They were the ones who knew what questions to ask, and give answers to the questions that were presented to them. Theirs were the Christian arguments to Plato and Aristotle. Their answers and intellect made my faith approachable. It is through their scholarship that many are able to approach the spirituality of Christianity. Understanding what these doctors did, helps one understand Christ. Their work is worth studying.