He Must Increase
The supreme lesson of John the Baptist's life is humility. And there can be no more vital message that we all need to hear than that God HATES pride. God uses John because he was willing to obey the Lord and by the power of the Holy Spirit in his life cultivate humility.
Why not do a spelling lesson with me?
Let's notice together that I is right in the middle of some very big things in life.
First spell "sin" with me: s-I-n.
Now spell "pride" with me: pr-I-de.
Now how about "anxiety": anx-I-ety.
Here is the best one, spell Satan's original name with me, it was "Lucifer", spell that with me: luc-I-fer.
So that I is in the middle of all my sins, all my pride, all my anxieties, and all the time doing the will of the Devil!
No matter what else you do in your life, if humility is not yours then God will resist everything else you and I do. God is moment-by-moment in a personal warfare against pride in the life of believers. It is the sin He hates most, sees first, and wants us to likewise hate.
No saint more fully or greatly pointed to God then when a simple man dressed like a peasant, after a lifetime of discipline and self denial thundered from the wilderness, "Its time to look at Jesus!"
By using John, God Demonstrates the essence of true humility in John the Baptist--because the key to God's blessing is humility.
He Must Increase
Please turn with me to John 1 and trace those events God's Word records that reveal John's character as he sought to serve the Lord as His humble servant.
The key to being constantly showered with grace is humility. Christ must increase and I must decrease. That is the essence of humility.
Humility produces spiritual blessing. Just as every sin starts in pride, every virtue begins in humility. Humility allows us to see ourselves as we are, because it shows us before God as He is.
The life of John the Baptist gives seven principles we may apply in determining humility.
1. John the Baptist was humble because he used his life as a ministry to others.
2. John the Baptist was humble because he closed his mouth to complaining.
3. John the Baptist was humble because he opened his will to God's.
4. John the Baptist was humble because he opened his eyes to Christ.
5. John the Baptist was humble because he closed his heart to self-seeking.
6. John the Baptist was humble because he opened his heart to spend much time in prayer.
7. John the Baptist was humble because he opened his mouth to praise.
Worship flows from a humble heart. This is Paul enlarging upon this worship filled life of the humble. Paul is saying that worship flows from the life emptied of selfishness and pride. When we are liberated from the tyranny of our own self-driven agenda and onto Christ's we find worship rising from our lives.
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