Text: Mark 1:4-11
Prop: Some movie or theater tickets.
Summary: John the Baptist was completely committed to preparing the way for Jesus. He pointed others to Jesus.
Have you ever been to a movie or theater play that was so popular that all the tickets sold out? People stand in line for hours to get tickets to great performances or events. Today I want to tell you about the person who was the warm-up act for Jesus. His purpose in life was to get people ready for Jesus. His name was John, and he became known as John the Baptist.
(Read Mark 1:4-7.) Large crowds came from all over the land of Judea to hear John preach. John had sell-out crowds because he was sold out for Jesus. John drew large numbers of people because he was completely committed to the task God had given him. He urged people to repent of their sins. He baptized them with water. This was a visible way of cleansing people, of washing away their sins. He was preparing their hearts for a very important person: Jesus!
John the Baptist used every chance to tell others that Jesus was coming. He pointed others to Jesus. He did not try to take credit for himself. In fact, he was so humble that he didn’t even consider himself worthy to be a servant to Jesus and carry his sandals (verse 7). The people were eager to hear what this wild man in the wilderness had to say. John was wearing clothes made from camel’s hair and living off the land, eating locusts and wild honey. John did not try to change his message to suit his audience. He boldly proclaimed the message God told him to give. He stayed focused on his mission of preparing the way for Jesus.
(Read Mark 1:8.) John baptized with water but he knew Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit. John prepared their hearts so Jesus could change their lives. We are called to give our lives and our souls to Jesus. We need to be sold out for Jesus like John the Baptist was, or you might say, Soul-ed out for Jesus. If we do that, then Jesus will change our lives. The servant who is totally committed to God’s will and following Jesus will be used in a mighty way by God.
Dear Lord Jesus: Help me to dedicate myself to following you more closely each day. Amen.
©2002 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.