Are You Willing to Not Be “the Man”?

The main character in Luke 3 is John the Baptist. John is publicly proclaiming a message of repentance and he is gathering quite a following. I think we could call him a “rock star” in the world of religion in his day. And yet John knew that he was not “the man”. He knew that his role was to prepare the way for Jesus. What makes this even more remarkable is that John could not have fully understood who Jesus was and what Jesus was going to do. We see later on when John is put into prison that he has doubt as to whether Jesus is really the Messiah (see Matthew chapter 11). Yet at the pinnacle of his popularity and following John knew that he was not “the man”. We read his words here: 15 Now as the people were in expectation, and all reasoned in their hearts about John, whether he was the Christ or not, 16 John answered, saying to all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather the wheat into His barn; but the chaff He will burn with unquenchable fire.”

John fulfilled a great purpose. John prepared the way for Jesus. Perhaps it was John’s message of repentance that was the key and/or perhaps John “stirred the pot” for Jesus but in whatever fashion, John prepared the way for Jesus…but he knew he was not Jesus. He was not “the man”. Very few of us are ever “the man”. Most of us don’t get to see the fruits of our labor or our labor is overshadowed or overtaken by someone else. I hope you think that’s OK. We are all part of God’s plan. We are not responsible for the outcome but we are responsible for the effort. Keep following…keep obeying…keep serving. You may not often be “the man”, but “The Man” appreciates your effort.


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