I had a couple of observations in today’s reading. First, in the last part of verse 22 where it quotes God’s voice saying , “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” It never gets old reading those words. I think of my dad, especially in the last few months I got to spend with him and I constantly wondered whether he looked at me and was “pleased” with the man I’d become. For Jesus, as a man, it must have been an incredible feeling to hear those words directly from His Father’s mouth. All I know, is it was always amazing when I heard it from my dad.
The second observation is the last part of the chapter where it goes over Jesus’ genealogy. This one is different from the one at the beginning of Matthew because it goes all the way back to Adam. There are no mistakes or coincidences in God’s word which establishes that Jesus is tied to all of us by being directly related to the created father of all mankind. I love knowing that!
Bjon Pankratz said:
I found it amazing in verses 10-14 that the peoples hearts, it seemed, had been used to their worldliness so much so that they were asking what to do. This, to me, is a good example of how blinded you can be by the enemy that the simplest common good and go unrecognized.
I also love how John denounced himself as Christ. The scripture doesn’t say they asked him. It says they wondered in their hearts. I believe John sensed through the spirit this and responded immediately his worth to the one.
Dino Evangelista said:
Bjon, thanks for joining us! Great observations!
Heather Wogan Brett said:
Two observations. First, I love that these passages are already showing that the gospel is for everyone… v10-14 refer to tax collectors, soldiers and crowds. Reading from another day suggests that the Pharisees were also present as it directed the “brood of vipers” comments to the religious leaders… It’s just awesome that we see that pattern so early on.
The second observation v18-20… “…and for all the evil things that Herod had done…. That he locked up John in prison”. It struck me how easy it is to be like Herod. Locking things out, shutting convictions out, blocking them, hiding the sin away, or at least trying. Makes me wonder how many times someone has tried to call me out on unrighteous behavior and Ive not heeded it or refused to hear out of stubbornness or pride or whatever. It also makes one evaluate their relationships. How many if any in my life would love me enough to call me out? Am I being a friend, calling others out in love?
Brian Manning said:
Verse 8 is convicting for me, “Therefore, produce fruit consistent with repentance.” This is a simple command from John, but it’s never easy to do. It’s so difficult not to live this life for me. It’s easy to want to sit back and think that we’ve had our ticket punched into heaven. But we’re called to live a life consistent with our repentance and that means abandoning our own desires and living for God.
Dino Evangelista said:
I agree, it is sometimes difficult to remember we should be a reflection of Christ. Not that it gives us salvation, but because we are changed.
Cheryl Brehm said:
Wow, I’m really challenged by John’s rebuke after the people started getting baptized because it was the “popular” thing to do. (Funny, it reminds me of how going to church is the “popular” thing to do in the Bible belt today!) “Brood of snakes! What do you think you’re doing slithering down here to the river? Do you think a little water on your snakeskins is doing to deflect God’s judgment? It’s your life that must change, not your skin…what counts is your life. Is it green and blossoming? Because if it’s deadwood, it goes on the fire.” Then John tells them to give to the poor and live holy lives.
Recently I read the book, Crazy Love. It rocked my world. It turned my eyes away from me and toward God. For many years I’ve lived the “American dream,” and I was focused completely on the amount of money/things I have and my social status within the Christian bubble. Of course, I’d faithfully give to the poor, but if I’m honest with myself, it was just to make myself feel better and to check it off my list called, “Things Good Christians Do.” But what’s really missing is a passionate, mourning heart for the poor people in the world who die without hearing the gospel. So back to what John was saying, what is my motivation, the popular thing or the passionate thing?