Luke 3:16 “ John answered and said to them all, “As for me, I baptize you with water; but One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to untie the thong of His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.“
What a wealth of blessing is found at this stop on Route NT316. What powerful lessons can be learned here.
Recorded are the words of John the Baptist. He is explaining that while he was baptizing the people with water, this baptism was nothing compared to what was to come. Something extremely important to learn through John, is how to remain humble in the face of greatness. As John was preaching about repentance, people were flocking to the Jordan river to be baptized by him. Surely this was very much an open opportunity for John to get a big head, and get caught up in self-importance. It happens to many. The Lord begins to use them as a vessel of His Word. He begins to use them as an agent for delivering His blessings to people. Usually, this is for a season. Then, soon enough, the vessel and the agent begin to slip from the awareness that what is happening is from and because of the Lord. They wander into a place of perceiving and promoting self as the source of accomplishment and success. How utterly important it is for us to remember who is truly the source of success, and to whom it belongs.
The Bible is full examples of people rejoicing over accomplishment and success. Rejoicing with words and with song. Properly done, such rejoicing can be called praise, because it fully acknowledges God as the source and primary beneficiary of all that has been achieved and the source of all future triumph!
While fulfilling his call of baptizing in the Jordan river, John humbly acknowledged that the greater things of the Lord were yet to come. He didn’t try to hang on to what he had, but encouraged the people to go and seek after greater things than he had for them. Sending is an extremely hard task. For example, how agonizing it is for a parent to send their child out into the world to live their own life. Another example is someone in ministry sending the people they have discipled and nurtured, so they can move on in the walk the Lord has for them.
The thing is, if we don’t send them, how can we know whether we have succeeded, and how can they achieve the plans God has for them?