Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the historic one-year lectionary.
Our Gospel reading from John 1:19-28 introduces us to John, the forerunner of the Messiah. We meet John proclaiming the kingdom of God and baptizing repentant people. When asked why he was doing this, he denied being the Christ or the prophet to come, but says he can show the people to the Christ.
It’s so very easy for us to mix up our priorities. I regularly find myself talking with pastors and other church leaders who are frustrated because they haven’t been able to convert people to Christ. They have found that they are unable to put marriages and families back together again. They have failed in their prayers, in their counsel, in their administration.
My question in these situations, though I usually ask it more gently than this, is, “Who do you think you are, anyway?” If we think we are the savior, we will be disappointed, and so will the people we try to care for. Worse still, the people we try to care for may try to trust us as the savior, be deceived into looking for salvation to come from us, and fall from the grace of God into eternal condemnation. Who do we think we are, anyway?
Who are you, John? I’m a guy pointing people to Jesus, the Messiah. You should see what he is doing. He’s able to bring you forgiveness. He’s able to deliver life to you. He’s worthy to take away the sins of the whole world. Really, don’t trust me. Trust him. He’s the one you want to meet.
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