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Matthew 11:11

King James Bible
Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

Ok,the JWs try to use this verse to prove John won't be in Heaven.


I'm very confused on this. :/ I know he is in Heaven but I don't know how to explain that this verse doesn't support the view that John couldn't go to Heaven.

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Wait ...  You mean the same Jehovah's Witnesses who say that Bible proves Jesus Christ is Michael the Archangel?  


They don't know who the person of Jesus Christ is.  They deny his true nature!  They claim Jesus is an angel created by Jehovah.  They can't get this, the most important and central teaching of the Bible, right.   That's a big red flag.


I wouldn't be counting on them to have a correct interpretation of Jesus' words in Matthew 11:11 when they don't know who Jesus is--the Son of God, the central figure of the Bible.  Their reading of the Bible, shaped by the interpretation of their founder Charles Taze Russell, is way off base.


Isn't this the same John the Baptist that Jesus says is "more than a prophet" (Matthew 7:9)?  The messenger sent by God to prepare the way for Jesus' coming (Matthew 7:10)?  The messianic forerunner?  The same John whom Jesus sought out to be baptized? (Mark 1:9-11).


Do they think the Apostle Paul made it to heaven?  Paul went from describing himself as "the very least of all saints" (Ephesians 3:8) to saying near the end of his life: "of sinners I am chief" (1 Timothy 1:15). 


The more you study with and/or debate the Jehovah's Witnesses, the more confused you will become.  You will find yourself twisted like a pretzel or tangled up knots.  They're really good at that.  But they haven't a clue who Jesus Christ really is.  They are in grave error.

I'm pretty sure they believe Paul is there since he was an apostle. And I say is there because they believe anyone in the 144,000 that have died are automatically in Heaven now. I know it is confusing. :/


They say John won't go [they believe anyone not in the 144,000 are in their graves waited to be re created by Jehovah] because he died before the resurrection.


I know that is mainly what happens is the JWs will argue and twist what is said. I don't have a choice though but to find answers. Because once mom asks me if I believe Jesus is God I'll need answers [mainly about the Deity of Christ,that's another topic though]. But I know if she tells the elder's wife that basicly anything could come up. Whether it be about the Deity of Christ,being born again,the 144,000 or whatever. And they use that verse about John as a proof text to support the 144,000 going ot Heaven.


Yes it is exhausting. But if I can't answer them even one question they will say [insert question I couldn't answer] proves their view. That is why I hve to get as many answers as I can. I know the Holy Spirit will help me put it into words since I'm horrible expressing myself.

God bless you! My prayers are with you and your loved ones.

Thank you very much. I really appreciate your prayers. God bless you,too.

Praise God! I was reading the answer on It is a site that reaches out how to help JWs find Christ and hear the gospel.


The reason John is more least than the least of the Kingdom of Heaven is because he never got to preach that Jesus was resurrected. While he preached that Jesus was the Lamb that took our sins away he didn't get to preach death,burial and resurrection because it had not happened yet.

I really hope I understood that correctly.

John the Baptist had been arrested, chained in a dark dungeon, probably with little food or water, & was evidently having doubts about the One he had proclaimed as the Lamb of God, so he sent his disciples to ask Jesus if he truly was the Messiah. Jesus’ response contained encouragement for John. After sending his disciples to question Christ, he was told to consider Jesus’ mighty deeds and then to make up his own mind. He went on to commend John’s ministry and validate it on the basis of OT prophecy.

If John was doubting Jesus, some others may have been starting to doubt John. So Jesus discussed John the Baptist with the crowds. John came in some unexpected ways but was nevertheless to be viewed as the forerunner, fulfilling Old Testament prophecy about preparation for the Messiah. In fact, John was the greatest man to live under the old covenant. But he would not live long enough to see Christ’s death and resurrection establish the new covenant, so in that sense even the most insignificant Christian was greater than he. The crowds were not to reject the legitimacy of either Jesus or John. 

I don't understand in my mind, how they can receive this Scripture as saying anything other then what is laid here. They seem to strive very hard at twisting Scriptures so much that they don't have the time to find the real truths that is open for us to see. 

Very good. Amen.

In Matthew 18:1-4 we learn who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child (verse 4). Learning who the greatest is can help us understand why the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than John. The greatest in the kingdom of heaven have no position or status or influence in the eyes of the world but in God's eyes, they have found favor for their humility. In the verses following Matthew 11:11, we learn that John was born with a specific purpose-- he is the Elijah who was to come (verse 14).

I'm speculating, but I think Jesus is assuring us that even though we may have no special prophetic purpose in the kingdom of heaven, it doesn't mean we are among the least in the kingdom but au contraire.

Another way of looking at this is, John was born with the Knowledge and indwelling of  Holy Spirit.  Much like Jesus told His disciples, you believe because you have seen Me, greater are those that believe in Me yet have not ever seen Me.  John was born for a few very important reasons, The most Important to prepare The Way for Jesus.  Yet, he was also equipped with The Holy Spirit in a way no one else had been.  

Yet, little Sis it will be your example; how you live your life for Christ, that will be the strongest way all the JW's you are giving and have given witness to now for some time.  As always be Blessed "feet." 

Good word, Chris!

There is really. nothing to be confused about. Jesus was simply refering to the fact that we would have the Holy. Spirit lliving inside us. John never got to experience that, because the spirit was not poured out til after john had got killed. wr are only greater in that respect. Also when dealing with jws one should advoid debates unless specifically led by the Holy Spirit or it will just turn into foolishness . God bless '

Matthew 11:11 is not a proof text that demonstrates that John the Baptist is not in heaven.  Jesus did not say that; to suggest that he did is to misconstrue his words, which the JWs often do.  Let's read the verse carefully, and then I want to share a few commentaries.

"I tell you the truth, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John the Baptist. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he is!"  (Mat11:11, ESV). 

  • Verse 11 does not exclude John from salvation.  Rather Jesus is contrasting "the kingdom of men" (John is placed "among those born of women," v. 11) and "the kingdom of heaven" (v. 11b).   According to the noblest criteria for judging humans, there is none greater than John.  But what matters ultimately is whether one is included in the Kingdom of God. "The meanest citizen of [this] kingdom is greater than the greatest of the former - not because of superior merit (merit he may lack completely), but simply because he is a citizen of the Kingdom of God."
    -- (K. Chamblin, "John the Baptist and the Kingdom of God," Tyndale House Bulletin 15, Oct 1964, p. 16).

  • “Is greater than he”: John was greater than the Old Testament prophets because he actually saw with his eyes and personally participated in the fulfillment of what they only prophesied (verses 10, 13; 1 Peter 1:10-11). But all believers after the cross are greater still, because they participate in the full understanding and experience of something John merely foresaw in shadowy form – the actual atoning work of Christ.

  • In at least three ways,we are "greater" than John the Baptist: 1) In our knowledge of Jesus Christ; 2) In our station of life by being in Christ; and 3) In our privileges offered by Jesus Christ.

  • John’s preeminent greatness lies in his function of announcing the imminence of the kingdom (Mt 3:1). But to be in the kingdom is so great a privilege that the least who has it is greater than the Baptist.

I believe it's because John the Baptist died before Jesus could die for his sins. Still it is very admirable that he could make it into heaven by his own actions.

Additionally I will say, I do not see it as being possible for someone to save themselves through moral conduct alone. John the Baptist only made it into heaven by being an instrument of God, as in following commands from the Holy Spirit.

All the saints who have performed actions for God on earth even before Jesus's resurrection should be allowed into heaven due to the special nature of those deeds performed.

I see this verse as an illustration of the value of Jesus's sacrifice.


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