30
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1.9 SAYS IF WE CONFESS OUR SINS PART 2

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1 John 1:9 says If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  To confess means to say the same thing about our sin as God does.  We like to rationalize our sin. Others are conceited, but I respect myself. When others lose their temper, they are angry; me, I have righteous anger. Others are prejudiced; but I have convictions.” Nice labels do not change the poison inside the bottle. Don’t say God, I don’t know if I sinned or not, or if I sinned forgive me, but call it sin like God does. We need to admit and confess sin to be right with God.

28
Mar
2018

ROMANS 1:14-17 JESUS PAID IT ALL

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The important pieces of evidence that surround Christ's resurrection.

  1. There is no dispute among scholars that Jesus was dead after being crucified
  2. Next, there are the early reports of the resurrection.
  • Reports of Jesus' resurrection that come so quickly, you can't just write them off as being a legend.
  • We have one report of the resurrection, including named eye-witnesses that has been dated back by scholars to within months of the resurrection of Jesus. That is historical gold.

        3.   Third, the focus on the empty tomb.

Even the opponents of Jesus implicitly conceded that the tomb of Jesus was empty.

         4.   We have nine ancient sources, inside and outside the New Testament, confirming and corroborating the conviction of the disciples that they encountered the resurrected Jesus.

  • That is an avalanche of historical data.

There are ancient sources inside and outside the New Testament that confirm the fate of Jesus' disciples and the suffering they were subjected to for proclaiming that Jesus had risen.

The resurrection of Jesus is a historical reality based not on mythology, but a solid foundation of historical truth.

         5.   Of course the biggest reason is the Bible says it is so.

1Corinthians 15:1-4 and the rest of the chapter also

Ps 40:9 I have proclaimed the good news of righteousness In the great assembly; Indeed, I do not restrain my lips, O LORD, You Yourself know. 10 I have not hidden Your righteousness within my heart; I have declared Your faithfulness and Your salvation; I have not concealed Your lovingkindness and Your truth From the great assembly.

1Co 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Just live by faith - Hab 2:4; Joh 3:36; Ac 3:21; Ga 3:11; Php 3:9; Heb 10:38

John 16:8 "And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:  9 "of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 "of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  11 "of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

Joh 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 "And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 "For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 "But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

Joh 3:35 "The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. 36 "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him." (NKJV)

25
Mar
2018

JOHN 1.35-42 THE REVEALING OF JESUS TO THE DISCIPLES

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John 1:35 Again, the next day, John stood with two of his disciples. 36 And looking at Jesus as He walked, he said, "Behold the Lamb of God!" 37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 Then Jesus turned, and seeing them following, said to them, "What do you seek?" They said to Him, "Rabbi" (which is to say, when translated, Teacher), "where are You staying?" 39 He said to them, "Come and see." They came and saw where He was staying, and remained with Him that day (now it was about the tenth hour). 40 One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He first found his own brother Simon, and said to him, "We have found the Messiah" (which is translated, the Christ). 42 And he brought him to Jesus. Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, "You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas" (which is translated, A Stone).

 In this section of Scripture we continue to see Jesus revealed to another group of people, very important people in God’s plan for the salvation of Mankind.  This is the last time we see John the Baptist in his role as the revealer of Jesus.  He fades off into the sunset now that his part has been played and the revealed one becomes the main focus of John’s Gospel.  Many people then and probably many today misunderstood the role of John the Baptist.  He is only the newspaper boy telling us to read all about it in the Headlines, Jesus the Lamb of God has come to take away the sin of the World.  We will see John, James, Andrew, and Peter come to Jesus and begin their walk with Him.  This is the beginning of their call to eventually become his Apostles and the ones who would write scripture, and become the foundation of the church.

  1. Following Christ Determines (or means you have to decide) what you want v35-39

Pulpit Evangelism

 Jesus did not call these men to follow Him as His disciples now. That came later (cf. Matt. 4:18-22; 9:9; Mark 1:16-20; 2:13-14; Luke 5:1-11, 27-28). The Apostle John recorded a preliminary contact that these men had with Jesus.

 V37 Two of John the Baptist's disciples started following Jesus because of John's witness. This was perfectly proper since John's ministry was to point others to Jesus. They were not abandoning the Baptist for a more

popular teacher. They were simply doing what John urged his hearers to do. They began following Jesus physically to learn from Him. They also took the first steps toward genuine discipleship. This was no tentative

inquiry but a giving of themselves to Him as disciples.

 "It appears that the Evangelist is writing on two levels. The question makes sense as straightforward narrative: Jesus asks the two men who are following him to articulate what is on their minds. But the Evangelist wants his readers to reflect on a deeper question: the Logos-Messiah confronts those who make any show of beginning to follow him and demands that they articulate what they really want in life." Jesus' question gave the men the opportunity to express their desire to become His disciples. However, they may not have been quite ready to make that commitment. They replied by asking where He was staying. This polite response may have implied that they simply wanted to have a preliminary interview with Him

 John 1:38 "Staying" translates one of the writer's characteristic words (i.e., Gr. meno, "to abide"). Here it means to reside, but often it has theological connotations of continuing on especially in an intimate relationship. These men may have already been wondering if that type of relationship with Jesus might be possible for them. This word occurs 112 times in the New Testament, and John used it 66 of those times, 40 times in his Gospel

1:39 Jesus responded by inviting them to accompany Him, not just to see where He was staying but to visit Him. They first had to come with Him and then they would see. This statement was also highly significant spiritually. Only by coming to Jesus could they really comprehend what they were seeking spiritually. The same thing holds true today.

 Following Jesus  Means an ongoing discovery of who He is v40-41

Friendship Evangelism

We should not conclude, however, that because Andrew believed that Jesus was the Messiah he also believed that He was God. He may have believed this, all the evidence in the Gospels points to the disciples learning of Jesus' deity after they had been with Him for some time (cf. Matt. 16:16; Mark 8:29; Luke 9:20). Probably Andrew thought of Jesus as a great prophet who was the messianic deliverer of Israel. The title "Messiah" means "anointed one." The anointed one in Israel was originally any anointed priest or king who led the people. As time passed God gave prophecies of a coming Davidic king who would liberate the Israelites and establish God's rule over the whole earth (e.g., 2 Sam. 7; Ps.2; 110). Thus the idea of a coming anointed one crystallized into the title "Messiah - The Greek is Christ

 Following Jesus Means you get a new identity v42

1:42 Jesus anticipated what Peter would become in the history of the church by God's grace.

Jesus gave him a nickname that expressed his character, which was not uncommon. It is interesting that Simon Peter originally had the same rash and impulsive character as his ancestor Simeon, the second son of Jacob.

Cephas is Aramaic, the common language of Palestine, and means "Rock." Peter is the Greek translation of Cephas. As the record of Peter unfolds in the Gospels, he appears as anything but a rock; he was impulsive, volatile, and unreliable. Yet Jesus named Peter in view of what he would become by the power of God.

"In bringing his brother Simon Peter to Christ, no man did the church a greater service than Andrew."96

Every time we meet Andrew in this Gospel he is bringing someone to Jesus (cf. 6:8; 12:22).

Jacob means deceiver, Israel means having Power with God or God’s fighter

Abram means high father or exalted father, Abraham means Father of a Multitude

Isa 62:2 The Gentiles shall see your righteousness, And all kings your glory. You shall be called by a new name, Which the mouth of the LORD will name.

 Re 2:17 "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it."'

 Re 3:12 "He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. And I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name.

 

21
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:9 SAYS IF WE CONFESS OUR SINS

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1 John 1:9 says If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  You ask why do we have to confess our sins if God has already forgiven us.  We can never lose our salvation, but we can mess up the relationship. If I slap you and ask you later to do something for me, I am sure you would say no.  You would at least want an apology, it is the same with God, we grieve Him when we sin, and we need to ask forgiveness to restore our right relationship and place in His will. So, have we asked God to forgive us today and made sure we are in fellowship with Him?

18
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:31-34 THE REVEALING OF JESUS TO JOHN AND ISRAEL

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John 1:31 "I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water." 32 And John bore witness, saying, "I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. 33 "I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.' 34 "And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God."

            This is a great section of scripture that tells us that John did not know Jesus even though he was His cousin.  It gives us a glimpse into the mind of God and how He works when showing us His will.  If you want to know the will of God you have to do the will of God that has already been revealed.  We will also see the difference between John’s baptism and the Baptism that Jesus came to give to us who would believe in His name.

 Verse 31 I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel."

  • Up to this time even though John was the cousin of Jesus he did not know Jesus
  • He had lived in the wilderness so they had no contact with each other
  • He is in effect denying that he and Jesus had schemed together
  • He had to go before Jesus baptizing to fulfill prophecy

 Verse 32 - Then John gave this testimony: "I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.

Verse 33 - I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.'

Mt 3:13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried to prevent Him, saying, "I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?" 15 But Jesus answered and said to him, "Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness." Then he allowed Him. 16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

Mark 1:12 At once the Spirit sent him out into the desert, 13 and he was in the desert forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.

  • In his first act of public ministry Christ was identifying himself publicly with sinners
  • His perfect righteousness will be given to us
  • His baptism represented his death, burial, and resurrection
  • His being the Messiah was publicly attested to by God’s voice from heaven
  • Notice John saw Christ, the Holy Spirit come down on Him, and heard God’s voice from heaven.
  • He was an eyewitness of Christ’s Majesty

2Peter 1:16 We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.

 Verse 34 - I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God."

Hebrews1:1-3 

1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. 3 The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.

14
Mar
2018

WARDEN BURL CAIN TESTIMONY FOR HIS LOVE MINISTRIES

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Listen to Burl Cain former Warden of Angola State Prison describe what it means to all of us when people minister to those in Jails and Prisons

www.hisloveministries.podbean.com

#HLMSocial 

www.hisloveministries.net

To see a short presentation of all we do go to:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_u49CmD55WlMWQ1UTNNN0RtTkU/view

His Love Ministries
A Ministry Dedicated to Reaching out to those the World Has Forgotten!
Board of Directors: President: Marty McKenzie
Robin Evans, Gina McCall, Jerry McNair, George Mitchler, Vicki Mitchler, Esther Wilson
Staff: Marty McKenzie, Ronnie Nichols, Erik Lacanilao, Matt Gallant, Brandon Beard
PO Box 30513, Savannah, GA 31410 Phone: 912-398-0573
Non-Profit 501 (c) 3 Organization Tax ID- 58-2549397
Contact E-mail: mmckenzie@hisloveministries.net

How we use our funds
To purchase Bibles and Bible-based Literature for large print hymnals for the Nursing Homes.
The funds are also used for daily expenses that have allowed us to continue our current ministry and expand the amount of church services and Bible Studies in the Jail, Transitional Center, Youth Detention Center, Prisons, Nursing Homes/Assisted Living Facilities, and Treatment Facilities for Adults, Youth, and Adolescents

Our Mission
His Love Ministries is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit Christian Ministry. This ministry is based on Matthew 25:35-40. The key verse is 40: “And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'” Our mission is to spread the gospel throughout: correctional facilities (adult and youth), nursing homes/assisted living facilities, treatment centers (adult and youth), and the local community to reach more people with the life-changing message of Jesus Christ; to equip and edify those who know Christ as their Lord and Savior; to build greater relationships with those in need by providing joy, comfort, and security in their lives through Bible studies, church services, correspondence, and site visits. We reach out to those the World has forgotten. Everyone we minister to is locked up in some way, shape, or form. Those in the nursing homes are captive in bodies that don't function, a wheelchair, a bed or a facility they cannot get out of; children and youth who are locked up due to behavioral and emotional crisis. They have been separated from their parents, and all they want is true unconditional love (some have said to me, “We want a real family”). We also minister to those locked up in the jail, prison and Youth Detention center; and those “locked up” in addictions to drugs, alcohol, depression, and suicidal thoughts and a variety of other things that keep them from becoming who Jesus wants them to be. Jesus Christ came to set us free from the burden and penalty of sin and give us abundant life. We want all these people to see how much God loves them; that He made a way through Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness and freedom from their sin.
Our organization serves People in facilities that are unable to get to a Church service or
Bible Study. We reach out to the forgotten.
We have been on mission in Correctional Facilities since December 1997; Nursing
Homes/Assisted Living Facilities since April 1999 and Coastal Harbor Treatment Center since
February 2009

Recipients of our services and how many people we serve each year
We serve the People in facilities that are unable to get to a Church or Bible Study. We reach
out to those the world has forgotten.
We conduct about 2,321 church services and Bible studies a year (193 a month).
We currently minister in 12 Nursing Homes/Assisted Living Facilities; 5 youth and adult
Correctional facilities; 3 Behavioral Treatment Facilities for youth and adults, Greenbriar
Children's Center, and the Savannah Mission Bible Training Center. We also do a Bible Study
at a church that is a substitute for an AA or NA program.

12
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:27-30 JESUS IS THE LAMB OF GOD THAT TAKES AWAY THE SIN OF THE WORLD

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John 1:27 "It is He who, coming after me, is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose." 28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing. 29 The next day John 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 is preferred before me, for He was before me.'

            In this tremendous passage of scripture we see John the Baptist still saying he is nothing compared to Jesus. He tells us that before he talks about Jesus and then again after he points us to the Lamb of God. He will tell us about that glorious Lamb that takes away the sin of the world and was predicted all the way back in Genesis 3:15, and spoken of so many times in the Old Testament sacrifices. He tells us that Jesus is the only one who can take away our sin and provide salvation.

 Verse 26   "I baptize with water," John replied, "but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie."

John replied by implying that his authority to baptize as he did came from an authoritative figure who was present but yet unknown. John did not identify Him then. This would have exposed Jesus to the scrutiny of Israel's leadership prematurely. John only realized that Jesus was the Messiah after he said these words (cf. v. 31). John simply referred to this One and implied that he baptized in water under divine authority. He stressed the great authority of Jesus by saying he was unworthy to do even menial service for Him. Thus John bore witness to Jesus even before he identified Him as the Messiah.

1st He tells them he only baptizes with water and cannot do any more

  • The baptism signified when the Gentiles were converted into Judaism
  • It signified repentance and becoming a people of God
  • This was amazing as they hated Gentiles and they were saying they were as Gentiles
  • Repenting in anticipation of the return of the Messiah

2nd He points them to the one all of our lives should point to Christ

  • One that can do for them what he cannot

Next he tells them that Jesus stands among them

  • God is often nearer to us than we know
  • Christ is to be preferred over him
  • Notice that the priests and Pharisees do not ask John where the Messiah is
  • They wanted to harass him
  • The did not come to receive instructions so their ignorance was willful
  • They might have known Christ but would not, this is willful rejection of Christ

Psalm 84:10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. 11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

"To get the full impact of this we must bear in mind that disciples did do many services for their teachers. Teachers in ancient Palestine were not paid (it would be a terrible thing to ask for money for teaching Scripture!). But in partial compensation disciples were in the habit of performing small services for their rabbis instead. But they had to draw the line somewhere, and menial tasks like loosing the sandal thong came under this heading. There is a rabbinic saying (in its present form dating from c. A.D. 250, but probably much older):  ‘Every service which a slave performs for his master shall a disciple do for his teacher except the loosing of his sandal-thong.' John selects the very task that the rabbinic saying stresses as too menial for any disciple, and declares himself unworthy to perform it."

Verse 28 This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

  • Notice the place where this happens

Bethany – Signifies the house of passage two Bethany’s, one where the disciples live and one near the Jordan, confuse it by calling it Bethabara

 There's one down there by Jerusalem where Mary and Martha and Lazarus lived. And there's another one,

  • Some think it was the very place where Israel passed over into the promised land under the guidance of Joshua
  • Now Jesus opens a way through here to the Gospel
  1. The Presentation at Christ’s Baptism

Verse 29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

Ex 12:3; Isa 53:7,11; Joh 1:36; Ac 8:32; 1Co 15:3; Ga 1:4; Heb 1:3; 2:17; 9:28; 1Pe 1:19; 2:24; 3:18; 1Jo 2:2; 3:5; 4:10; Re 1:5; 5:6

Genesis 22:1-14 Abraham sacrificing Isaac

  • The use of a Lamb as a sacrifice was very familiar to the Jews
  • A lamb was used as a sacrificed during the Passover

Exodus 12:21 Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Go at once and select the animals for your families and slaughter the Passover lamb. 22 Take a bunch of hyssop, dip it into the blood in the basin and put some of the blood on the top and on both sides of the doorframe. Not one of you shall go out the door of his house until morning. 23 When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, he will see the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down. 24 "Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants.

  • A lamb was to led to slaughter in the prophecies of Isaiah

Isaiah 53:7

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

  • A lamb was offered in the daily sacrifices of Israel

Leviticus14:12 "Then the priest is to take one of the male lambs and offer it as a guilt offering, along with the log of oil; he shall wave them before the LORD as a wave offering.

  • Jesus was the Lamb that was sacrificed to take away the sin of the world when he died on the cross

Verse 30 This is the one I meant when I said, 'A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.'

7
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:8 WE ARE DECEIVED IF WE BELIEVE WE HAVE NOT SINNED

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1 John 1:8 says If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  I remember I was talking to a woman about Christ and she told me she never sinned.  I told her the Bible says we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God.  But she had been deceived and thought she had no need of Christ since she was not a sinner.  How about you?  Do you think you are good enough to get to heaven on your own?  Romans 6:23 says the wages of sin are death, but the gift of God is eternal life.  You need to ask God to forgive you and save you because Jesus died on the cross for your sins, that’s the only way to get to Heaven.

5
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:19-26 THE TESTIMONY OF JOHN ABOUT HIMSELF

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John 1:19 Now this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?" 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, "I am not the Christ." 21 And they asked him, "What then? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the Prophet?" And he answered, "No." 22 Then they said to him, "Who are you, that we may give an answer to those who sent us? What do you say about yourself?" 23 He said: "I am 'The voice of one crying in the wilderness: "Make straight the way of the LORD,"' as the prophet Isaiah said." 24 Now those who were sent were from the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, saying, "Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?" 26 John answered them, saying, "I baptize with water, but there stands One among you whom you do not know.

We’ve seen the testimony of John about Christ, now we see the powers that be asking John who he is and why he is doing all the things he is doing, especially baptizing.  They are worried about who he is and why he has come and why so many people are flocking to him out in the desert.  John will not even speak about who he is but does what he always does, his job, which is to point others to Jesus.  The ones who are sent go away without the answer of who he is, but heard something much more important that they do not even listen to or care about.  How sad for them.

The Presentation by John The Baptist

Who was John? …The cousin of Jesus

We see the early years of John the Baptist in Luke 1:5-80

His birth is foretold by Gabriel to His father Zacharias in 1: 5-25   

Zacharias rendered speechless

Jesus birth is foretold to Mary in 1:26-38

Mary’s visit to Elizabeth in 1:39-45

Baby leaped for Joy (John)

Mary sings a song of joy in 1:46-56

John’s birth in 1:57-66 ….Named him John

Zacharias’ prophetic song in 1:67-79

John’s growth and early life in 1:80

He lived in the wilderness, wore a camel hair coat and ate locusts and honey

We see his Public Ministry in Luke 3:1-18

  1. John’s Presentation of Christ to the religious leaders – verses 19-28

Verse19 - Now this was John's testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was.

  • Jews used about seventy times in John’s Gospel. Refers to the Sanhedrin or governing body of Jews
  • Made up of legalistic Pharisees who had about 600 laws that they kept in addition to the 10 Commandments
  • They traveled 26 miles to question John
  • This shows 7 things
  1. Sending persons of such character and figure, was showing John a great deal of honor
  2. Serves to make his testimony of Christ the more public and remarkable
  3. It also shows what a noise John's ministry and baptism made among the Jews, that it even reached Jerusalem, and the great council of the nation;
  4. They thought he was the Messiah, it shows the opinion that was entertained of him

Luke 3:15 The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John might possibly be the Christ.

  1. They were afraid that there may be something to what he was saying. They were the top dogs and might lose their position of power.
  2. They thought they needed no repentance, so could not stand someone preaching it
  3. It was a show of power, they sought to stop him from his ministry

Verse - 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, "I am not the Christ." Or Messiah... both mean "the Anointed One 21 They asked him, "Then who are you? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the Prophet?" He answered, "No."

  • Hearing of John’s doctrine, character, and baptism because he appeared so suddenly, he seemed to have dropped from heaven in the part of the country where Elijah was taken to heaven so they thought he was Elijah

Mal 4:5 “See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.

 Mt 11:14 And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.

Luke 1:17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous-- to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."

Mt17:12 But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands." 13 Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist.

1st He had already told them he is not the Messiah

2nd He was not a prophet like Samuel or Elijah who would get involved in public affairs and bring them out from under the yoke of Roman Bondage

3rd He was not Elijah that had been raised from the dead

4th He was a prophet who had revelation from God, but did not get his revelation by dreams and visions as did the OT prophets

5th They thought the prophet and the Messiah were two different people

Verse - 22 Finally they said, "Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?" 23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, "I am the voice of one calling in the desert, 'Make straight the way for the Lord.'" {Isaiah 40:3}

  • In the original context this refers to God leading them from Babylonian exile through the desert
  • Romans 11:25-27 - It is a prophetic call for Israel’s greatest and final return to God from spiritual darkness.
  • His humble attitude –
  • He refers to himself as a mere voice thus focusing the attention totally on Christ
  • The voice of one Crying –(Crying out loud) His earnestness and heart for the people to repent
  • He was in the wilderness – Hear from God when secluded and in solitude away from the hustle and bustle of the world.
  • Have you ever heard the still small voice of the LORD?

1Kings19:11 The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by." Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.

  • Make straight the way of the Lord
  • He came to rectify the corruption of the law by the scribes and Pharisees
  • To prepare people to receive the Lord

Psalm 24:7 Lift up your heads, O you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.

Verse 24 Now some Pharisees who had been sent 25 questioned him, "Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?"

  • They asked knowing it would be used when the Messiah came
  • Zechariah 13:1 "On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.
  • Ezekiel 36:25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols.26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
  • They asked because he had denied he was Elijah and they wanted to know by what authority he Baptized

Verse26 - “I baptize with water," John replied, "but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie."

1st He tells them he only baptizes with water and cannot do any more

  • The baptism signified when the Gentiles were converted into Judaism
  • It signified repentance and becoming a people of God
  • This was amazing as they hated Gentiles and they were saying they were as Gentiles
  • Repenting in anticipation of the return of the Messiah

2nd He points them to the one all of our lives should point to Christ

  • One that can do for them what he cannot

Next he tells them that Jesus stands among them

  • God is often nearer to us than we know
  • Christ is to be preferred over him
  • Notice that the priests and Pharisees do not ask John where the Messiah is
  • They wanted to harass him
  • The did not come to receive instructions so their ignorance was willful
  • They might have known Christ but would not, this is a willful rejection of Christ

Psalm 84:10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. 11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.