John 1:29-34

(The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! 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 before me, for 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 Him. 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 testified that this is the Son of God. ~John 1:29-34)

Previously it was discussed that Priest and Levites from the sect of the Pharisees had paid a visit to John wanting to know who he was and why he was out in the desert preaching repentance and baptizing with water, he told them he was a but a voice, but there was one who was greater “whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose.” When he said this to them, Jesus Himself was walking up the Jordan valley towards the very location of this encounter and arrived the very next day. John was preaching repentance from sin and baptizing those who repented when Jesus came up on the scene. He sees Jesus and yelled out to his own disciples who thought John might be the Messiah and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” He tells them all, that this is the very man that he had been telling them all about, that He is much greater than John himself. That He is preferred before him because He was before him. John is older in the flesh but Jesus was around long before John, which is because Jesus has always been, He is God in flesh. What I find fascinating about this is John admits that he had no idea who the Christ (Messiah) was, but knew He was coming. Jesus was John’s cousin and yet he did not know Him. John would have been around Jesus at times during their childhood and John did not know Him. Now how did John know who Jesus was, how did he know that He was the messiah sent from God to take away the sin of the world? God told him! Just like every single believer that has ever walked the face of this world, God told him. He believed that Jesus was the Christ and knew He was the Christ because God told him. “Upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.” John was baptizing in the Jordan as was his custom to do and who walks up but his cousin Jesus. Jesus rises up out of the water and John sees with his own eyes the Spirit of God descend from heaven onto Jesus and remaining on Him. God had told him that this would happen and who he saw it happen to was the One, the Christ.

Are you a believer? Do you believe that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God (God in flesh), that takes away the sin of the world? If you do, that belief came about because God the Father revealed to you that Jesus is the Christ. Jesus said, (“Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted to him by My Father ~John 6:65.) Friends, we cannot take credit for anything, we cannot even take credit for the faith that has saved us. God’s design was that He would redeem mankind who had become perverse and sinned all of the days of our lives. You see, it is not a matter that we sin, but the matter is that we have never done anything but sin. At one time I thought sin to be isolated incidents, but the closer I become in my relationship and love for my Lord the more and more I am aware of sin. It surrounds us continually, it is all over us and abides within us, and we are so perverse, we for the most part are completely unaware of it. God is good and Holy and just, and is also merciful. Being good and Holy and just he cannot by his very nature pardon sin, it is His very goodness that condemns us, while dirty with sin we cannot even come into His presence without being destroyed. But God in His love did something unimaginable, (But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us ~Romans 5:8). A Holy and good God became a Man and took the punishment for evil men. God Himself took our punishment, so (that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus ~Romans 3:26). We are saved purely by faith in Jesus Christ alone and if you have that faith you should prostrate yourself before God, giving thanks to Him not only for the blood He shed for you on the cross, but for the faith He gave you that saved you, because that was given to you from Him. Your faith is not your own but His!

Mike Peek