Luke 3:15-18 – The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John might possibly be the Christ. John answered them all, "I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." And with many other words John exhorted the people and preached the good news to them.
John the Baptizer had made a most impressive “splash” on the scene of Jewish life. He had a powerful influence throughout the countryside. His people had not experienced anyone like him since the days of Elijah and it caused them all to wonder if John just might be the Messiah. John set the record straight by informing everyone that HE BAPTIZED WITH WATER for repentance of sins. That meant that those who recognized the error of their ways and desired a new identity (one that included forgiveness and cleansing of the past), came out to him to be baptized in the Jordan. But, he told them of one more powerful than himself that was coming – one that John couldn’t hold a candle to! This MORE POWERFUL ONE will baptize with the HOLY SPIRIT and WITH FIRE! WATER is a powerful cleansing agent, but FIRE purifies, refines and generates a different kind of power – passion that is pure and holy! John spoke of One who was coming with power to refine and purify our hearts! He would baptize with fire and with the Holy Spirit. This kind of power was superior to John’s power. John’s power convicted people of their sin, brought about sorrow for wrong-doing and moved people to seek cleansing, forgiveness and new direction for their lives. The One to come after him would provide power to live holy passionate and Godly lives.
John 1:6-9 informs us, “There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.” John was the Best Man and Jesus was the Bridegroom. The Best Man prepares the way for the Bridegroom. John’s ministry convicted people of their sin and their need for repentance and cleansing. He prepared the way for the One whose power can not only cleanse from sin but replace that sinful desire with a passion to live holy lives that are pleasing to God. The One who baptizes with fire and with the Holy Spirit will come equipped to separate the good from the bad, the holy from the wicked, and the wheat from the chaff. This holy fire cannot be extinguished and will consume all the chaff – nothing unholy will remain! John acknowledged that he was not even worthy to untie the sandals of the One who was coming with this kind of power. “And with many other words John exhorted the people and preached the good news to them!”
- Meet together with at least 1 or 2 other believers to enter the Throne Room of Grace.
- Join our 6:00pm Thursday night prayer team.
- Thank God for those who helped prepare the way for the power of Christ to come into your life.
- Pray for the Good News families of the week: David Prevosti (Georgianna, Noah), Dennis & Sherry Smith, Bob & Alison St.James (Matt, Kelley, Nate).
- Praise God for His cleansing power that washes away every stain of sin!
- Thank God for igniting the fire of His Holy Spirit in your life!
- Cooperate with the Holy Spirit as He burns away all the chaff in your life!
- Attend “In Touch” Prayer meeting at GNCC at 10:30am or join in prayer at that time.
- Pray for God’s Kingdom to come and His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven.
- Praise God for baptisms of water and fire!
Prayer Challenge: Let us cooperate with the refining fire of the Holy Spirit as we confess our sins – for He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness! And let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.