He Must Increase, I Must Decrease

He Must Increase, I Must Decrease

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the season of Lent. Each weekday morning, we’re going to spend a few minutes in a passage in John. Here’s the goal: read it, pray it, share it. Every post will have a passage of Scripture, a short prayer, and a question to meditate on and talk about. In a few minutes every day, we can prepare our hearts for all that God has planned in this season of Lent. 

Read It: John 1:29-42
“The next day [John the Baptist] saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, ‘Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! [30] This is he of whom I said, “After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.” [31] I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.’ [32] And John bore witness: ‘I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. [33] I myself did not know him, 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.” [34] And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.’

[35] The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples, [36] and he looked at Jesus as he walked by and said,’“Behold, the Lamb of God!’ [37] The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. [38] Jesus turned and saw them following and said to them, ‘What are you seeking?’ And they said to him, ‘Rabbi’ (which means Teacher), ‘where are you staying?’ [39] He said to them, ‘Come and you will see.’ So they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour. [40] One of the two who heard John speak and followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. [41] He first found his own brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means Christ). [42] He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, ‘You are Simon the son of John. You shall be called Cephas’ (which means Peter).” (ESV)

“This is the Son of God.” How about that for an introduction? When Jesus began his ministry, John the Baptist was one of the most famous people in Judea. John had been baptizing people across the Jordan - where Israel had wandered in the desert over a thousand years before - proclaiming repentance and calling on everyone to turn back to God. Hundreds of people had come to hear John preach and something was stirring in Israel.

Then it finally happened, what John was predicting came true. God returned to Israel. When he saw Jesus he broke out into praise - “Behold, the lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world!” Something new was happening in Israel. God was about to fulfill his promises.

Don’t miss how John reacts. Though he was well-known for his own teaching, he humbled himself before the master teacher. Though he had been the focal point, he turned his attention to what God was doing. Though he had followers, he pointed them to the only one worth following. Andrew and Simon Peter started out as followers of John. After they saw their teacher’s reaction, they began following Jesus.

John was the last of the Old Testament prophets and he was the first of the New Testament followers of Christ. Because of what he said many others began to follow Jesus, starting with the disciples and continuing all the way through you and me. John shows us how to use our influence to point others to Christ. Jesus’ commands are the same now as they were then. Come and see. Follow me. 

Pray It:
Lord, you sent your Son to be our Savior, our leader, and our guide. Give the strength to follow him and to be like him today. Give me a heart like John to use my influence, strength, and following to point others to you. Amen

Share It:
What does John’s response to Jesus tell you about how to follow him? What can you learn from Andrew and Peter?

Who has God put in your life that you can point to Christ? Are those who follow you pointed to Jesus?

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