I believe you are referring to what the Lord Jesus said in Matthew 11:11, “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.”

The Lord had seen fit to use John the Baptist to end the 400+ years of silence that had passed since He had spoken to His people. We read of John the Baptist in John 1:6-8, “There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.” We read John’s proclamation of Christ to the world in John 1:29, “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Of course, John’s words are in reference to what Abraham told his son, Isaac, in Genesis 22:8, “And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb…” Christ was that lamb that would come into the world to take away the sins of the world by dying for sinful man.

John was the ‘forerunner’ of Christ. His mission was to announce Christ to the world and to warn them to “flee from the wrath to come.” (Read Matthew 3:7). His mission was foretold in Isaiah 40:3, “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.” We also read of him in Malachi 3:1, “Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.” We further read of John in Matthew 3:1-3, “In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.”

Although we have no miracles recorded from John, we do know that he preached with the power of Elijah. When the angel of the Lord appeared to Zacharias (John’s father) to proclaim the birth of John, he said to him, “And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:16-17)

John was used greatly of the Lord and has a unique place in scriptural history. His work was incredibly important, so important that the Lord would say “there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist.” Yet, in that same sentence, the Lord went on to say, “notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” How could that be? What does that mean?

The Lord was speaking of John’s privilege, not his character. Those in the kingdom of Heaven are positionally greater, not morally greater. William MacDonald in his book, “THE BELIEVER’S BIBLE COMMENTARY” put it like this: To be a citizen of the kingdom is greater than to announce its arrival. John’s privilege was great in preparing the way for the Lord, but he did not live to enjoy the blessings of the kingdom.” (301.2)