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The Greatest Man Meets the Greatest Lamb - Part A

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The Truth Network Radio
May 22, 2022 6:00 am

The Greatest Man Meets the Greatest Lamb - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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May 22, 2022 6:00 am

Everyone is good at something, maybe even great at something. Maybe you're a great artist or a great mom or even a great leader. Jesus said that John the Baptizer was the greatest man who had ever lived (Matt. 11:11). But John knew Jesus to be the greatest One ever—past, present and future - the Sacrificial Lamb sent to remove sin. Today we discover from John the Baptist how to witness for Christ and we look at the identity and the activity of this most unusual man.

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No you are know who you are and knowing who you are means knowing you're not John could say who he is not a man who is not the Messiah I'm not Elijah I'm not the problem. I'm a voice that's the first step in being a witness is being aware knowing who you are and knowing you're not is a good first. Just as John said, I am not the Messiah now to tell you something.

I was the obvious which are not the Messiah, welcome to connect with script we good division of the world's finest was a comic book for DC comics that debuted in 1941 and featured a regular team up between Superman and Batman.

These two icons repaired together many times since.

Although the book could begin their friendship is no longer around the two of them team up and still often referred to as the world's fine well today here in Qubec was good we could go to talk about her super team up of a different sort before we get to. Here's what we have for you this month and correctly skip.com winning player's huge role in the difficult narrative from Eve to Esther to Betsy that Priscilla please find stories of faith and family I think explores for Queens of the Bible and her new teaching series. Here's where we see Bernice sitting right by his side.

Unfortunately, Bernice is can it go with the flow, to peer pressure and remain silent hear more from Lynn yet. She explores four different queens in Scripture. And when you get $35 or more today will send you the Queens of the Bible collection of teachings as a way of saying thank you. Peer pressure is a powerful thing. The crowd was watching Bernice was watching Agrippa was watching and you know you do stupid things in peer pressure, you'll say you don't like the movie really like everybody else is they don't like it, whatever it is you come to the peer pressure get your copy of the special teaching visit connectwithskip.com/offer to get online securely today or call 892 1888 we resume our study of John chapter 1 to return there in your Bibles.

Let's join Skip verse 23 said of them. I am is an answer I am the voice said I'm voice are not the word he's the word I'm just the voice of the word. I'm the voice of one crying in the wilderness. I'm a nobody, but I'm telling you about somebody on the voice of one crying in the wilderness, quoting Isaiah chapter 40 reaching back 700 years make straight the way of the Lord, don't you love that I'm just a road worker. John said I'm I'm helping get that path straight that you need to walk on to get your life straight with God. That's all I am white. John could answer that question in a number of ways. Good me based upon what we know about him.

What Jesus said about you is that you want to know I am.

I'll tell you who I am. I am the son of the great priest Zacharias whom you know that would've gone while that's pretty cool. Zeta said I'll tell you who I am. I am the child who is filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb, you can say that they is what Jaco said you want to know why am I am the greatest guy who ever lived in you the right. Jesus said that about. I'm the Herald of the missile, but in humility's as I'm just a voice I'm not the message I'm just the messenger. The message the word is Jesus.

I am the messenger now want to give you quick thumbnail sketch of John the Baptist so we can get background so we can just move on in this book we just tell you about his early years his dad was a priest Zacharias. His mom was named Elizabeth. Both of them were old and childless and beyond the capability of bearing children. It was a miraculous birth when Zacharias his dad was performing his ritual in the temple of burning incense as he was doing that one day the angel Gabriel appeared the big dog, Angel and says Zacharias you and your wife Elizabeth are going to have a son and he will be great in the sight of the Lord and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb, and he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children in the hearts of the children to the fathers give a prophecy of John the Baptist. Zacharias sees the angel Gabriel hears the words and he goes, I don't believe that interesting.

I want to sign when a what what is an angel talking to you this is you want to sign. I give you sign and he struck him dumb so that he couldn't speak for nine months while his wife was pregnant so he gets out of the temple is all excited as what he saying any all I can. Meanwhile, in months later when Mary the virgin Mary, now conceived by the Holy Spirit, with a little baby growing in her womb goes to visit her cousin Elizabeth the wife of Zacharias as Mary goes to visit her cousin Elizabeth as soon as she calls out her name and comes into her house. Elizabeth would be the mother of John the Baptist. She's now 5 to 6 months pregnant at that time said to Mary as soon the sound of your greeting reached my ear. The babe leapt for joy in my will I was John the Baptist.

John the Baptist in the womb will eventually John was born when he was born and they asked the dad what are we going to name him they expected to hear Zacharias you name them after the father, Zach Junior he scribbles out on a tablet. John the angel said Naaman is not to mess with an angel and work John was seen as an end and that he could speak and this what he said.

Zacharias said in you. My little son will be called the prophet of the most high, because you will prepare the way for the Lord you will tell his people how to find salvation to the forgiveness of their sin is quite a unique upbringing. Now that was. John is a baby later on he grew up and he became a teenager and things began to change as a teenager I can just hear the conversation.

I like to just sort of humanize and modernize or can you just hear one day Zacharias and Elizabeth are having a conversation honey if you been watching how John is stressing me camel's hair, all honey, don't worry about all the kids are doing it just the way it goes. Leave it alone, but John became more eccentric and was drawn toward the deserts of Judeo, not the priesthood, like his father, but the deserts. Moreover, we believe that John took a special vow outlined in the Old Testament book of numbers you can look it up later called a Nazirite valve a valid dedication under the Nazirite regulations. John had to let his hair grow. He could never cut his hair. She can imagine what he would look like as you grew up never cutting his hair. He could never touch anything that would defile him like a dead person. So if his dad died, he could even go to the funeral and he couldn't have anything from the vine. He couldn't drink wine you could need raisins.

He couldn't eat grapes.

It was a strict valve of separation, John lived in uncontaminated life and he wanted to do that because he wanted nothing to hinder the message he was to preach and if there's ever reason for any preacher not to do certain things that are questionable. That's the reason to live in uncontaminated life. So the message can be preached in a very clear and un-diluted manner that was John a voice crying in the wilderness, that's his identity. Let's look at his activity.

Verse 24. Those who were sent were from the Pharisees and asked him, saying, why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the prophet, and John answered them, saying, I baptize with water, but there stands one among you, whom you do not know it is he who coming after me is preferred before me, or exists or has existed before I did. Even though John was older, the sandal strap.

I am not worthy to loose these things were done in Beth Ibarra, beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. So were told about his activity. He was baptizing people he was putting in the water as we gotta know about this background, baptizing, baptism is not a Christian ritual didn't originate in Christianity, but in Judaism and when a Gentile wanted to become Jewish or the proselytizing to the Jewish faith.

So let's say your your pagan Gentile and you come to believe in the God of Israel and you want to worship them. That's called a proselyte, a convert three things are required. Number one instruction by the scribes, they gave you truth Bible studies number two you had to be circumcised. If you are a male and number three you had to be baptized in a ritualistic cleansing that spoke of the moment you are baptized leaving the old way of life and becoming a citizen of the Jewish community when no that's the problem because John the baptizer is at the Jordan River and the people around them are not gentiles but Jews in his baptizing that Gentiles coming into Judaism, but he's baptizing Jews who are you and if you are not the Messiah. Why are you doing this and I love John's answer he just sort of dismisses the whole water baptism thing I baptizing with water, but there's one standing among you, whom you don't know and later on he says he will baptize with the Holy Spirit.

You'll see that so what John was doing was an outward sign of repentance preparing the hearts for the Messiah. But this what he was really doing was pointing people to Christ. Verse 29 the next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and he said behold every time you see the word behold this means hey look, or check out Sir jungle hey you guys look. Check it out, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, after me comes a man who is preferred or existed before me where he was before me. I did not know him but that he should be revealed to Israel.

Therefore, I came baptizing with water and John bore witness saying I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and he remained upon them. 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 and I have seen and testify that this is the son of God. So you get the scene. These representatives are shocked to see this crazy guide baptizing people and they demand to know who you are, what are you doing why are you baptizing, and John beautifully points the spotlight away from him and puts it on to Jesus saying who I am is not the issue in this water baptism isn't the issue. The issue is the one who is coming and is here among you, behold the Lamb of God, and Johnson's two things about Jesus's words to things what about his person and what about his mission about his person.

John unmistakably is declaring Jesus is God when he says he is preferred before me, if you follow his language versus previous to this. That's what he said now he repeats it he existed before I ever did. He existed before he came to this earth.

Now, if you know anything about John so far, you know that's the premise of John chapter 1, the apostle John.

The author, John is beginning the story by saying okay I'm in a tell you about Jesus who is the word he was with God, and he was God and that word God became human, so Jesus Christ I want you to know from the get-go is God and I call to the stand. My first witness John the Baptist. John the Baptist gets up to the stand and he witnesses is yet I agree he is God is called the son of God. That's a term for deity is will discover in this book is preferred before me now or something that's marvelous or don't want to miss if if Mary the mother of Jesus and Elizabeth the mother of John the Baptist were cousins.

What is that me, Jesus and John the Baptist cousins like second cousins so they were related not to me this adds more weight of integrity and testimony to the words of John the Baptist, is how many of you would ever save your cousin. My cousin is God. How many of you at a family reunion when your cousin Watson would say luck my cousin. That's the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world you won't do that. As you know them. A true Jesus and John grew up together interface from time to time.

No doubt they would go together at least in part up to Jerusalem and shared the festivals together families did that family reunions John and Jesus would no doubt be playing and conversing. And yet John the Baptist is convinced my cousin is God. Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Verse 29 that's what he says. What is he mean when he says the Lamb because from just an animal perspective Lamb is an impressive animal in the Jewish nation was looking for a king, a lionlike king, the lion of Judah.

They wanted a king God gave him a Lamb. Look, the Lamb, what a Lamb is the one the Lamb you know people don't use lamps to protect themselves. You never seen a sign have you be aware of Lamb, watch out.

I got a Lamb here Lambeau. It doesn't exude strength. The idea of a Lamb. And that's not what it's meant to exude or speak of. John was the son of a priest and priest sacrificed lambs in the temple and to say, behold the Lamb all of the Jewish people would know what that means in here is the one who would be sacrificed. And John says for the sin of the whole world. Maybe John when he introduced Jesus was thinking back to Isaiah 53 you'd Artie quoted Isaiah 40 maybe was thinking back to what Isaiah said he will beetle lead is a Lamb before slaughter.

Or maybe was thinking back to the Passover, when the Lamb was killed in the blood put on the doorpost and lintels of the Jewish homes and they were protected by the blood of the Lamb. Now me. This is significant extra want to close before we apply this whole concept of the Lamb because you know people will say things like, well, I believe Jesus was just a good teacher.

We are writing is the best is the best teacher weighs a lot more than just that.

And that's not the reason he came he didn't come to earth to teach nice things to people.

Others was there. I believe Jesus was was a miracle worker, you need so many people happy by the miracles. We are right he did but that's not why he came to earth. Others will say well I like to think of Jesus as the ultimate example of love and acceptance, will he certainly was that that's not why he came to earth John Nelson look, the Lamb who takes away sin and it's the sin of the world's first and foremost a Lamb. Israel wanted a king God gave them what they needed a Lamb now want to close with this thought.

I asked a question at the beginning, how can we be witnesses, representatives for God in this world. How can we make our lives count so that were not just breathing air and taking up space were actually representing God faithfully being a witness and I want to make these four quick application points and if you're taking notes. No take this number one. Be aware be aware that is know who you are, know who you are and knowing who you are means knowing who you're not John could say who he is not, and then who is not the Messiah I'm not Elijah I'm not the prophet I'm a voice and that's the first step in being a witness is being aware knowing who you are and knowing who you're not is a good first step and just as John said, I am not the Messiah I'm out to tell you something, and it was painfully obvious, but you're not the Messiah, either you know what a load that will take off anybody in the ministry. Anybody who counsel somebody else anybody was care and compassion wants to fix problems because people come to us and we think I could be the answer to this person.

I can fix that person. I know you don't, you're not Jesus you're not the Messiah you know Jesus, you know, the Messiah, you can take people to the one who has the answers but you're not the answer. Keep that in mind, be aware know who you are, what gifts God has given you what Collins God is giving member to be vocal to be a witness for Christ at some point you have to open your mouth and tell people the gospel John said I am a voice crying and whatnot I am good example.

I'm a lifestyle for a lot of people think well I can't really tell people about Jesus. I'm not really good at that. But I can live the Christian life and live an example and they will look to my example will that's good and I hope for all examples. But if you're a wonderful exemplary change person but you never tell people how you got that way I can help mouth to the guys. I wanted a million.

He so sweet and forgiving and loving and then you tell them all the reason I got this way is because of Jesus Christ who change my life.

The word is Jesus needs the voice the message requires the messenger so be aware never to be vocal. Number three be filled be filled with the Holy Spirit. John or Luke chapter 1 verse 15 John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb.

No wonder he was so bold. No wonder he was so faithful to keep preaching what he was preaching week after week, month after month. At the Jordan River and John cared if the priests and Levites liked what they heard. You think John the Baptist really lost any sleep. They said I can't believe you said that were to leave and go to another baptismal whole on the block where there's another preacher preach. I think he cared.

He was filled controlled by the Holy Spirit. Number four, so here's the first three. You are to be aware know who you are. You are to be vocal. We are to be filled with the Holy Spirit number four were to be a signpost were to point people to Jesus. That's what John did is they made it all about John and all about water baptism. Johnson is not about me or what I'm doing here my whole life and it's all about him that one. I'm a nobody. He's the somebody, so be a signpost to discover if you start talking to people about Jesus. They're going to want to shift the conversation away from Jesus and away from them and Jesus on to something else of the want to say things like walking there so many religions in the world you spent hours dealing with that issue.

And when you cover that is illegal logging so many denominations, even in the Christian faith totally OKAY. You had a five hour to work on our didn't want to take you away from the heart of the issue, which is Jesus his claims his person and how they relate to so be it signpost pointed to him hey look, the Lamb and by the way, as you point people to Jesus. Would you please point them to the real one is a lot of false Jesus out there people have. I believe in Jesus.

I was able tell me about him and I discovers not always the biblical Jesus. The biblical Jesus is first and foremost, the Lamb, who died on the cross for their sins.

John knew behold the Lamb of God that's good with the message from the series believe 87 the urine and connect with Skip week individual. Right now want to tell you about a unique opportunity to take your knowledge of Scripture to a deeper level. Think taking classes in physical studies can't fit your life, your skill for college student Krista after years of wanting training in ministry. I found company, now I can keep in my life with the Lord and I can go as little boys often is my schedule. The classes are great and the schedule works around my work and family. Learn more about God and the Bible on your schedule with Calvin College apply to the Calvary church college.com next time Skip Heitzigs against an important question whether or not we truly are a follower of Jesus will come back for more.

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