The Testimony of John the Baptizer

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Sermon Outline:

1. His Profound Witness (v. 19-22)
2. His Positional Greatness (v. 23-26)
3. His Prophetic Reverence (v. 27-28)

Sermon Text:

John 1:19-28

The Testimony of John the Baptist

19 And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” 21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.” 22 So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”

24 (Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.) 25 They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, 27 even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” 28 These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Sermon Notes

Psalm 100 – A Song of Thanksgiving
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness!
 Come into his presence with singing! Know that the Lord, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name! For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.

Let the Church Be the Church
Christianity in culture does have impact and does produce change. But it only does so as long as Christianity doesn’t become a political organization and remains at its very core deeply gospel-centered. Is it wrong for believers to enter politics? Of course not. Is it wrong for Christians in politics to use their office, driven by a biblical worldview, for the good of society and their fellow man as say Wilberforce did on the issue of slavery? Absolutely not. But the church itself is not driven by the brilliance of U.S. Constitutional ethics, but by the Scriptures of the living God.

So again, what is the solution to the plight our nation finds itself in? The gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ did not come to transform America, but to transform Americans. The gospel is not the new nationalism for the conservative, but the hope for any sinner (like me and you) who by God’s sovereign electing love trusts that eternal life and salvation is attained only by grace through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord alone. A phrase I coined several years ago defines my thoughts on this issue: the cross waves higher than the flag.

Gospel-driven Worship:
Acts 2:42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles.

Gospel-driven Welfare:
44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,

Gospel-driven Witness:
47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.