By Ty Haguewood
The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me.’ I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.” And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.” John 1:29-34
Greatness is not measured on some type of outward success but rather an inward faithfulness to God. It is vital for us to understand that the “Great Ones” are only great because of their faithfulness to God.
The world desires for us to believe that greatness is a characteristic of someone who has had outward success such as a certain income or social status like fame. The men that we will be discussing in the next several weeks are men who gave their life to following the Lord.
John the Baptist has such an incredible testimony. I am extremely challenged by the life of John for several reasons. I just want to give you two life changing truths that John the Baptist taught me.
John’s entire life was leading to the moment he would meet his Savior, Jesus.
I remember months ago reading the story of John the Baptist when the Lord revealed something HUGE to me. I have always been a person that thought purpose was an outward calling. After God saved me, I became obsessed with figuring out what my “purpose” in life would be. I stumbled across the testimony of John and was broken by the beautiful testament of John’s faith. I mean this dude’s purpose was to prepare the way for Jesus and before he could even see the ministry of Jesus completely fulfilled he is beheaded. Meditating on the simple, “Behold, the Lamb of God…” left be baffled to say the least. John’s entire life was fulfilled when he met Jesus, his hope had arrived.
Shouldn’t that be our response to the Lord? BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD! John saw the Lamb approaching and he was compelled to start shouting and crying out those bold words. Can I show you something special? The Lamb that approached John is the Lamb that ransomed you and I. John showed me that our purpose is Jesus.
John’s faithfulness was not dependent on whether he would receive a great reward. His faithfulness was dependent on the Savior that would soon be coming.
John was called to baptize with water and preach of the coming Messiah without having known when or who this Messiah would be. This is crazy to me!! The calling God placed on his life was good enough for him because of the God who called him rather than the outcome that would come of his life. Our obedience and faithfulness to God should never be dependent on an outcome. Faithfulness to God looks like following Him regardless of where that ends up and how crazy you may look in doing so.
John’s life does not end in the greatest of ways. After being imprisoned, John the Baptist is beheaded. The Lord used the life of John the Baptist to shape and mold who I am today. My earnest desire is to get to the end of my life having had faith like that of John. Let me leave you with some words from our Lord and Savior, Jesus about John.
When John’s messengers had gone, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who are dressed in splendid clothing and live in luxury are in kings’ courts. What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written, ‘Behold I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.’ I tell you, among those born of women none is greater than John. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.” Luke 7:24-28
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