03.06.01 7 – 6 B.C. John the Baptist is Born; Roman Peace
John the Baptist was born in Ein Karem, a small village outside of Jerusalem that today has been absorbed into the city limits. Both John and Jesus were born and lived under Roman authority. In essence, throughout their entire lives, they were Roman subjects as were all the Jews of Israel. Scholarship seldom studies their lives from the perspective that they were orthodox Jews living in a Roman-Greek culture.
He was well acquainted with the evils of the time; the hypocrisy of the religious parties, the inroads the Roman-Greek culture had upon the common people. In light of that, he not only told the Jews to repent and be baptized; the mere fact that they were descendants of Abraham would not be sufficient for admission into the Kingdom of Heaven.
. There is some debate among scholars as to where John was born. A minority viewpoint is that his birthplace was in Hebron. See Geikie, The Life and Works of Christ. 1:111.