John the Baptist

Study Guide

As Jesus’ ministry eclipses John the Baptist and his followers, John rejoices. His clarity around who Jesus is and his own supporting role free him from any bitterness or envy. We also should be able to receive with gladness both what God gives us and what he doesn’t, secure in who God has made us to be and our part in advancing his Kingdom.
  1. Consider what it means to live in a “main character culture.” What would it look like for you to live counter-culturally—to decrease so that God can increase? Examine your relationships, conflict, parenting, social media, and ministry involvement.

  2. God can use us most powerfully when we are secure and content in who he has made us to be. What does it look like for you to be content in what God has given you and what he hasn’t?

  3. Reflect on the idea of receiving your assignment from the King. Is your will under submission to God’s mission? What are you struggling to accept about your current assignment?

Key Points
  • Although John the Baptist’s ministry diminishes, he is filled with joy at Jesus’ success. John understands that Jesus is the main character and he is simply a witness.

  • Being able to receive with gladness what God gives to us is a mark of great spiritual maturity.

  • While none of us are the main character, we do have a role to play. We can find freedom in accepting our place and our assignment from God.

  • We naturally want attention and affirmation for ourselves. This is revealed through our anxiety, stuck marriages, hidden sin, busyness, and worry over our children.

  • Unlike the Old Testament prophets, Jesus receives the Holy Spirit without limit. His authority is in a different category.

  • The gospel reveals Jesus’ identity as God’s beloved Son, and we are invited into that loving relationship. We must choose either faith in Jesus, which is revealed by obedience and grants us access to eternal life, or our own autonomy—rejecting Jesus and remaining under God’s judgment.

Other Scripture References

Scripture: John 3:22-36