John the Baptist

  1. You are unique!
    1. Ephesians 2:10 – For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
    2. John the Baptist clearly had an exceptionally unique call but he wasn’t unique for the sake of uniqueness but because of his obedience to God. He was unique in what he wore and what he ate…but also He was the only one to usher in the Messiah…he was also the last of the Old Testament Prophets and He was also the greatest.
    3. We all, just like john the Baptist have a unique call! None of us are the same! God made it that way, because he wanted you! He wanted relationship with you, he wanted you to know Him and to walk with him.
    4. We may look unusual to those around us when we choose to be obedient to God, but that’s because you are unique!
  1. We have a specific purpose
    1. 1 Corinthians 7:17 NIV – Nevertheless, each person should live as a believer in whatever situation the Lord has assigned to them, just as God has called them….
    2. John was living out his specific purpose. He was prophesied about in the Old Testament, he was prayed over in the womb, he was in the wilderness, he denied himself everything for the sake of his calling. He was obedient to his calling!
    3. Only you can do what you can do! No one has had the exact same experiences you have had. Your story is important! Your life is important!
    4. You have a life mission and it’s the reason you are alive on this earth today – God isn’t finished with you yet!
  1. We need to focus our efforts
    1. Proverbs 4:25-27 NIV – Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. [26] Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. [27] Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.
    2. John had extreme focus. He said no to the wrong things and yes to the right things. Only when we have a clear focus can we say yes to the right things and no to the wrong things!
    3. It’s so easy to focus on the wrong things.
    4. By aligning our focus with God’s purposes, we will live an effective life fulfilling the call he has on our lives. It’s been said, what you focus on is what you get!
    5. Where is your focus today?
  1. Remain faithful
    1. Galatians 6:9 – Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
    2. Despite intense persecution and rejection from his own people John the Baptist remained faithful to his calling. He didn’t leave the wilderness when it got too hot. He was out there in the wilderness, as a voice crying out that the Messiah was on His way. He was there ready to baptise anyone that wanted to turn from their sin. He was consistently there.
    3. Faithfulness is a fruit of the Spirit. When we are full of the Holy Spirit we become like Christ, which is to be faithful, despite the storms that come across our path.
    4. Stay the course!
    5. Don’t give up, despite the challenges
    6. Keep going, keep praying, keep believing and having faith that God will bring the breakthrough you need.
  1. POINT: Authority overrides position
    1. Matthew 8:5-10 NIV the story of the Centurion asking jesus to heal his servant. Matthew 8:8 NIV The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed.
    2. The centurion in this passage knew authority. He had authority in the Roman Military. He could say jump and the soldiers would ask how high? He knew that Jesus had authority – despite the fact at this point Jesus was still ambiguous in who he was.
    3. John the Baptist was not part of the establishment. He wasn’t a member of the temple or any of the elite and powerful. He was out in the wilderness, wearing camels hair…yet people were drawn to him and his message of repentance. He spoke confidently about what God had revealed to him, and people listened to him.
    4. You can make a difference where you are. You don’t need more power, more position or more experience. All these things are important and useful, but never let it be a disqualifier!
    5. Wherever you are now, you have the authority to create change. To bring people to Jesus.
    6. Humility trumps pride
    7. Mercy trumps judgement
    8. Serving trumps telling
    9. You can lead from where you are, position or no position!
  1. Everything we do points back to Jesus
    1. Matthew 5:16 NIV – In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
    2. John was a light in the darkness. At the time he appeared on the scene it had been 400 years of silence from God. No prophets, no revelation…silence.
    3. He was a voice in the wilderness, a light in the darkness, declaring that God was on the move. He brought a message of hope…the messiah, the saviour that theyd been waiting for… He was on his way!
    4. As we live our lives in obedience to God, we are going to look different. We should! But not for the sake of being ‘unique’ or ‘individualistic’. But purely because as members of God’s kingdom, we live differently to those around us. Our light is to shine in our workplaces. People should see our love, our kindness, our character…and see that something is different.
    5. All that we do has the sole purpose of pointing people to Christ.
    6. He is the good news. He is the messiah who has come to begin making all things new. Making all things right again.