And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high. Luke 1:76-78
The words of Zechariah mostly point at the Messiah. Little John is portrayed as a preparer of the way for the Messiah. Apparently this preparation consists of teaching salvation because of the tender mercy of our God. The teaching is what matters. To be ready for Christ one must be taught. We know that this means to be taught about the need for forgiveness, the way of forgiveness and the reaction to that forgiveness. Sin, salvation and service. John the Baptist prepared the way for the Way, the Truth and the Life. It is a great time to celebrate that God found the way to earth in Jesus Christ.