Is Christ preferred before you?
John 1:30,31 - This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.
In today's message we see John the Baptist who was a cousin of Jesus saying that 'I knew him not'.
Even if we take that Jesus did not socialist with his relatives therefore John had not much interaction with Him. But as a child we read that just the presence if Jesus Christ in the womb of His mother had an effect on John.
John may not have known Jesus fully, yet by the little John knew Jesus he had dedicated his life for Him, preparing the people for Him.
John could have been considered as the first Christian; one who says Christ is preferred before himself, for He is God (was before me). It is only a Christian who puts God before himself in all things, one who give priority to things concerning God's Kingdom. One who says the world needs to know Christ specially the people whom the Lord has called need to know Christ.
The Bible never says one should not live one's life; the Bible only says do good and give priority to things that last forever, then to things that are temporary. The Kingdom of God and things connected to the Kingdom of God are forever but this world and the things of this world are temporary.
Only reason why John is not considered/called a true Christian is because he did not witness the dead and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We may not have been there when Jesus died and resurrected, but by faith we are witnesses to His death and resurrection, therefore we call ourselves Christians.
What do you call your self?
A Catholic? A Born Again? A Baptist? What ever congregation or Church you go to, remember it is Christ that needs to be first not our congregations. Therefore call yourself a Christian first then tell people which congregation you belong.
John baptized with water, Moses baptized with sea and cloud, Abraham baptized with circumcision and Noah baptized with self-surrender. A true Christian is baptized in the truth of Lord Jesus Christ, in His death and resurrection. He then gets baptized with Holy Spirit and then with fire /power.
It is only when we are truly baptized in Lord Jesus Christ, we put Christ first.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord God, we thank You for Lord Jesus Christ. It is only by You that we are witnesses to His death and resurrection. It is this hope that keep us alive and witnesses to the world about Christ. Lord we pray that your people are truly baptized in your truth and not in symbolism. Let them know that this creation lke the Bible is all about Christ...
We make this prayer in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.
33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Spirit.
34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.
1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,
2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Spirit.
3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.
4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
16 John answered, saying to all, "I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
36 "The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ-He is Lord of all-
37 "that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached:
38 "how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.
39 "And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree.
40 "Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly,
41 "not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead.
2 Timothy 2:11-12
11 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him.
12 If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us.
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