Share This Episode
Insight for Living Chuck Swindoll Logo

Surprised by Jesus, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
February 5, 2021 7:05 am

Surprised by Jesus, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 856 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

February 5, 2021 7:05 am

The King's Arrival: A Study of Matthew 1‑7: A Signature Series

Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig
Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig
Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
The Christian Car Guy
Robby Dilmore
More Than Ink
Pastor Jim Catlin & Dorothy Catlin
Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig

It might surprise you to learn that Jesus lived 30 years of his life in virtual obscurity as a small boy. You recognized him as the King of the Jews is a growing young man you realize that Jesus was the Lamb of God came to take away the sin of the world, but there was a moment of pivot point that altered everything today on Insight for living Chuck Swindoll will describe this turning point is portrayed in Matthew chapter 3 and it was the day Jesus was baptized by John. Chuck titled today's message surprised by Jesus. No, we are interrupting the scene in this section were dealing with today. Matthew chapter 3, you begin in verse 11. Something has been happening, but it's been without Jesus presents and is this baptism of John has been going on. Jesus slips into the group without attention, without any fanfare and John looks up from the work of baptizing and he sees the Messiah and what follows is our interest today as we find John surprised by Jesus presence. He had no idea that he would be the one who would baptize the one he was announcing one of those epochal moments that has an irony to it that we don't want to miss as we look at Matthew 311 through 17 as I read it. I'm reading from the new living translation verse 11 of Matthew three, I baptize with water. Those who repent of their sins and turn to God, but someone is coming soon. Who is greater than I am so much greater that I'm not worthy even to be a slave or carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

He is ready to separate the chaff from the wheat with his winnowing fork, then he will clean up the threshing area, gathering the wheat into his barn, but burning the chaff with never ending fire. Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John.

But John tried to talk him out of it. I'm the one who needs to be baptized by you, he said.

So why are you coming to me. But Jesus said it should be done for we must carry out all that God requires. So John agreed to baptizing after his baptism as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him and a voice from heaven said this is my dearly loved son who brings me great joy.

You're listening to Insight for living to study the book of Matthew with Chuck Swindoll. Be sure to download his searching the Scriptures. Studies going to Insight world.or/studies and outlets resume the message titled, surprised by Jesus. Jesus came without announcement other there.

There was no shining light there was there was no glow around him.

There was no halo over his head. There is no prior announcement. If you come today, you'll see the one John is telling you about. None of that. But we're so familiar with the scene that we forget how natural it all unfolded. How easy it took place. Had we been there, sitting on the riverbank when purchasing long lines of people heads bowed, perhaps in prayer we would hear the splashing of water from the river. We would not know what most of any of the people who had gotten in line. We would hear quiet words spoken by John the one who has turned his life over to the Savior. We would we would not have known that one walked all the way from Nazareth Village up in Galilee all the way down to Judea by foot to the to the Valley where the river flows from the sea down to the Dead Sea.

Somewhere along the way on the east side near Bethany.

This gathering took place. Had you and I've been there and try to imagine we would not have known that the one who slipped in line had spent the last 30 years in obscurity, working with his hands making yoke for oxen or kitchen cabinets or loose stools or perhaps baby cribs and a little carpenter shop, we wouldn't have known him were Judea and you spent all of this 30 years up in Galilee in unlike today, people didn't travel often and certainly not very far traveled was rugged, expensive, and there was no place to stay so you pretty much stayed around your own place where you were with your neighbors. We would not have known that he talked to neighbors on Saturdays when they had gathered at the synagogue, we would not have known that he had helped care for his mother when he reached later teen and early 20 years, no doubt by now Mary's husband Joseph has died never mentioned in any of Jesus adult life. We probably wouldn't thought that he was the one who would set around the breakfast lunch and supper table with his sister, brothers having their meals not making the news we would not know that within a matter really of months he would be the name in the nation that everyone would know.

But not now. Not now. He looks like any other Jewish man who would've gotten for this ceremony. If you call it Dr. Luke verifies in chapter 3 verse 23 that he is no 30 years old, we wouldn't have known that this event in the water would be the launching of the most significant ministry in the history of time. We would have known that this moment would be like none other. I love scenes like this because were able to look back on them with the knowledge that they in that day would not of head looking at setting we know so much, because we know the whole life and death and resurrection and ascension of Christ. If were not careful will yawn through a passage like this with was a big deal. Everything is the big deal if you want a big deal. The Lord would not included in this record. This is a narrative like no other narrative or in other ways.

Like all other biblical narratives is a one time only.

There he stands what's going on what what was what is this about repentance.

We look at this briefly last time, and so a quick reminder is in order. Repent is the word that means get this to change the mind. You're moving in this direction and when you repented your turn and move in that direction. This direction you've been going as a direction of selfishness, greed, lying, stealing, lust and anger to the point of rage, infighting, constant competition with others, and you change your mind concerning those mental attitudes and along with that you change your lifestyle. So big deal.

Not enough is said about way I can so we can sort of up small our way from earth to heaven when in fact the Lord Jesus makes it clear you follow me. It's a narrow way. Most don't follow another in the process, giving up their greed and their rage and their lust and their lying and their habits that make life miserable for others.

Most go their own way of thinking, if you will, to hell with those things, but those who repent come to a decision and change their mind. Now we read that verse 11, I baptize with water.

Why do that with said about this become so common, few people ask that you may not know that baptism in John's day was something done when a Gentile converted to Judaism when a Gentile thought. My been moving in the direction I should be going I need to go the way of the Jews money to begin to worship on Saturdays.

I need to go to the synagogue.

I need to follow the teaching of Moses so they would be baptized in a ceremony a more official ceremony. This is not that kind of ceremony but it comes from that this is a baptizing and water that has to do with the kingdom of heaven that is at hand to join you more than those in the line he is studying him into the desert for his growing up years, and there along with the Lord, remembering the teaching of Zachariah and Elizabeth, his father and his mother. John had thought about his calling and it's seen him without his name there in Isaiah 40 you will be the one who prepares the way in the wilderness. He makes the rough places plain. You will be the one who will let them know of the Messiah. So John knew there was a Messiah. John's theology was was pristine as he says, a little later.I know that you existed before me, even though John is six months older than Jesus. How do you exist before someone after six months younger than that will if you are Jesus you are God and you never stop being in existence in nature. John knew that but trust me on this.

John didn't know that Jesus was going to get in line. This day nobody sent him an email me if you never notice ahead of time. Be ready is coming. Set aside a special place for a private ceremony. There's none of that and will you remember as we go through this that there's nothing great about any messenger. If John illustrates nothing else illustrates the fact that the message there is nothing more than one who gives a message and gets out of the way the great tendency of every convert or most is to make an icon on the one who introduces Christ to them.

Please don't make more of that, then that is necessary. Respect is nice gratitude. Of course, but the pedestal lies someone John will be the last 21 that would want to be petted crystallized pedestal lies so hard were to say pedestal there but that's John and he's baptizing Lisa someone is coming soon. Who is greater than I am verse 11 who's the someone is obviously Messiah. He doesn't say he's here now in line because he doesn't know that I know that to be so dogmatic about it. Look at John chapter 1 go there, let's go to the day after this day in Matthew chapter 3 John the gospel of John. Go to chapter 1 believe it yet. Verse 30 watch closely or 29 the next day okay we come from the day of the baptism to the next day Jesus saw John, I'm sorry John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, look, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He's the one I was talking about. I was that yesterday he's one I was talking about when I said a man is coming after me greater than I am for you existed long before me. I did not recognize him as Messiah. There you have it down in verse 33.

I didn't know he was the one to John does not know that that's Jesus who's come with the other Jewish men and women in that gathering to be baptized back to Matthew chapter 3 John is down there and he's baptizing people, encouraging them to change their mind turnaround in their thinking and you verse 13 we read Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River. No one went with it.

A brother didn't travel all of our sister. We had both Mary didn't come with him. He is not yet call disciples because he hasn't begun his ministry that this is brand-new the age of 30. This is the place where that great ministry will be launched, there were the water of the river he came to be baptized by John is an interesting that he hasn't cut in line and say to the others. I need to be first like celebrities to is the noticing he didn't have an agent who let everybody know that this is the one step aside the none of that.

He simply comes to be baptized and John sees him standing there and realizes at that moment somehow knew this is the one so look at verse 14.

I love this John tried to talk him out of it. Jesus. Jesus, I'm the one who want to be baptized by you, social wire you coming to me. John doesn't get the whole picture. It doesn't understand all of it that's okay.

He just knows that he's not the one that all of the doing this.

At least he feels that some of the very first words of Jesus as an adult or here verse 15. It should be done for.

We quarrel you and I miscarry out all God require stop and think holding who's in line sinful people. How do we know because they come. Having reprinted repetitive sin. Jesus gets in that line, but he has no sin. John sees him in a whole different category, but John forgets that Jesus came to be identified among us, and that's what baptism means to change identity, a change of identity and I am among you, I am a human with you.

I'm true truly human one with you and the father has sent me to do this we need to carry out his will.

John, I believe, reluctantly agreed to do this.

Isn't it interesting for me as an aside I is interesting how we get starstruck when were around well-known people thought of that when I found this true story of an Episcopal priest named John Hughes who tells of his brief encounter with Mother Teresa back in the mid-1980s.

Mother Teresa was already world-famous for her work with the poor. Perhaps second only to the Pope in the world of religious liberty. Hughes and his wife are visiting Calcutta India in helping care for destitute men in a home called Prem that Hughes admits that he was a bit starstruck at the prospect of of beating the famous non-but during their visit. They had only caught a brief glimpse or to offer from a distance. You become now reconciled with the probability they would never actually meet this extraordinary woman who would move the world with her pleas for charity one day about two weeks before they were scheduled to leave Calcutta.

John was sitting in Prem Dan changing the bandages on the old men there. The process involved cutting off old bandages, cleaning the pus from the wounds applying Neosporin and then reapplying a fresh bend what he was working a none sat down next to him at first. Hughes thought it was his friend, sister, Syriac, and he kept on working. When he finally did look over he found he was sitting only a few feet from Mother Teresa who said quietly, looking him directly in the eye dumbstruck.

He says that he sort of blacked out momentarily.

Hughes recovered himself and then ask the most famous woman in the world should like to help him. She would Hughes cut off the dirty bandages cleaned the sores and apply the Neosporin and Mother Teresa replace the bandages fastening each with a butterfly clip. Here's what the story gets interesting.

Hughes noticed that Mother Teresa had done it wrong.

She put the butterfly class upside down. The bandage the elderly gentleman we were serving walked a short distance away as my realization. So again I just seen Mother Teresa make a mistake. Hughes had to make a quick and extremely awkward decision. He thought do I tell Martin Luther King that he's made a grammatical mistake in the pulpit. Do I call Michael Jackson attention to the traveling violation on his way to a thundering dunk should hotel Mother Teresa, Nobel laureate destined for sainthood that she made a mistake in helping the poor. Hughes brought the man back in pointing at the faulty class. He told the scene that unless it was fixed it would fall off. He told her she put it on role that world-famous face. Mother Teresa's face looked at what I was pointing to listen to what I said paused for several pregnant moments and considered my mind raced telling me I must be wrong. She said quietly, only one word should should she fix the problem with the class.

I love that store.

Nothing about the story he writes in any way diminishes the greatness Mother Teresa. In fact, the story does rather the opposite.

Hughes later wrote that the images of the superduper spirituality*were things in my mind, nothing more than a humble human reality of who she was, was greater in the media image greater than the projections of the imagination. He goes on the lesson here even the most famous, most admired people in the world or ultimately human and fallible. George Washington lost battles Abe Lincoln committed a series of political blunders. Brett Favre through a lot of interception the nitpicker's of life will seize on the negative. Maybe because it makes them more comfortable with their own mediocrity. But they get it backwards. The failings of the heroes are not grounds for cynicism. Rather, they remind us how extraordinary it is that ordinary people, parents, teachers, role models do such extraordinary thing learn a lesson.

As we learn about Jesus.

He is into celebrity.

While he is the God man while he is the second member of the Trinity body deserves our worship and our owner and are raised is not a human celebrity never conducted himself as one and those who present him as though he were wish for themselves. Celebrity lemming as you keep listening to this message from Chuck Swindoll. It's based on a study in Matthew chapter 3, entitled surprised by Jesus to learn more about this ministry.

Visit us checks verse by verse study in Matthew has never been shared on Insight for living until now and over the next few months were confident.

You gain a whole new understanding of the king of kings by joining us for this fascinating series. It begins with the birth of Jesus and crescendos with his great commission.

Matthew's unique perspective provides a magnificent view of our Lord's life and when we truly engage with King Jesus, our love and affection for him grows immensely. We know it's not always possible to catch the program every day but when you secure a copy of Swindoll's living inside commentary on Matthew, you'll have instant access to the key themes in this study and their practical applications. Blood shall be able to refer to these two hardbound volumes for many years to come to the purchase Swindoll's living inside commentary on Matthew today. Call us if you're listening in the US dial 1-800-772-8888 or go to and then as God leads you.

Please remember the influence of your donation to insight for living our website and our mailbox are filled with affirming notes. Each one tells the story about God's faithfulness is men and women learn to apply the truth to their lives. Recently we heard from a listener who found insight for living in Uganda.

Another relied on church Bible teaching as she recovered from awful divorce and a man who depended on this program while he was incarcerated people from all walks of life are benefiting from your generosity. So to give a donation right now because you're listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 also give today when you go online to that's Dall continues his message called prized by Jesus right here on Insight for living.

The preceding message surprised by Jesus was copyrighted in 2015 and 2021 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2021 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. all rights are reserved worldwide.

Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime