What can you give someone who has everything? Ever felt that way while pondering what to get someone for Christmas or some other special occasion?
We tend to think that way in relation to God/Jesus/The Holy Spirit. They seem to have everything! So we never see ourselves as the Giver to Them.
But The One does need us. There was an important event in Jesus’ Life, where he turned to His Cousin and said, in essence, “Cuz, I need you to do something for Me.”
In The Presence of Jesus!
John the Baptist was the son of Elizabeth, who was Mary’s Aunt. When the angel told Mary she would become pregnant by The Holy Spirit, he also told her that her Aunt Elizabeth, who had been thought to be barren, was already six months pregnant. As recorded in Luke 1:37, the angel added,
For nothing is impossible with God!
A few days after this conversation with God’s angel, Mary went to visit Elizabeth. As recorded in Luke 1:39-44, this is what happened.
She [Mary] entered the house and greeted Elizabeth.
At the sound of Mary’s greeting,
Elizabeth’s child leaped within her,
and Elizabeth was filled with The Holy Spirit!
Elizabeth gave a glad cry and exclaimed to Mary,
“God has blessed you above all women,
and your Child is blessed.
Why am I so honored,
that The Mother of my Lord should visit me?
When I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for JOY!
Thus was the first meeting of Elizabeth’s son, John, as he responded to The One inside of Mary.
It is very likely that John and Jesus saw a lot more of each other, as they grew up. John may have seen Jesus only as his cousin. There is no clear indication that he knew Jesus his cousin was Jesus The One for Whom he felt compelled to prepare the way.
Think of it. What if someone you had known in a very ordinary way actually turned out to be The Savior of The World? For all of us, there is a moment in time when suddenly we see what has been there all along … and the door to another dimension opens, maybe just a crack or maybe with an earth shattering array of Light. If that moment has not happened to you yet, know that it can and will happen!
I Need You, John!
Let’s look in on what happened the day The Moment came for John. John, now called John The Baptist, was at the Jordan River, doing what he did every day. He was preaching against sin and calling people to repentance. John was one who very likely attracted some people out of curiosity.
He dressed funny. He hung out in the desert. And he was not afraid to confront anyone! Some people may have gone out to hear him for a lark! “Hey, I know what we can do. Let’s go see that guy, who calls out even the Teachers of The Law!”
But if one had gone to see John on that day, they would have gotten an extra treat of the amazing! Jesus came to the Jordan for one reason. Matthew 3:13 records,
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan
to be baptized by John.
When John looked at Jesus on that day, he may have felt the JOY that flooded his tiny body in Elizabeth’s womb when he felt Jesus’ Presence. He may have had the urge to leap, as he had done then! He may have felt wonder that The One had been there all along and he was only just now recognizing Him.
You Want Me?
Such is the moment that we “discover” Jesus, part of the One Who has been inside of us all along! And as soon as that first moment of revelation soaks in, it is often followed by the next curious question. Why would He come to me?
Mary had wondered why she would be so honored. Elizabeth had likewise wondered. And now John, recognizing that Jesus wanted him to baptize Him, was asking the same question of himself. Why would He come to me? Why would He be asking me to do something so highly important for Him?
Jesus wants you! He has come to you! He is depending upon you to help usher in His Kingdom on earth. What is your response? Perhaps you might feel as John did that day.
As recorded in Mathew 3:14, John said,
“I need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?”
Pause for a moment and consider what Jesus may have already asked you to do or what He is asking you to do now. Is it possible you are saying, “I need everything you are asking from me from You! You have the ability to make it all happen. Why do you come to me?”
Matthew 3:15 (NLT) records Jesus’ answer to John,
“It should be done,
for we must carry out all that God requires.”
What does God require? The Prophet Micah summed it up long before Jesus’ appearance on earth. As recorded in Micah 6:8
…” this is what He requires of you:
to do what is right,
to love mercy,
and to walk humbly with your God.”
Jesus’ baptism was what God required. It was right. It began the ministry of God’s Continued Personal Revelation of just how Merciful He is. Jesus stood before John in absolute humility.
John was humbled to be asked. I wonder if when John touched Jesus, he felt his righteous anger for the flawed teachers of the Law melting away. I wonder if he felt the Mercy of the One flowing into him!
How Far Away is Heaven?
We frequently envision heaven as some place far away. And yet Jesus said,
The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand!
Jesus demonstrated how close Heaven is. As He submitted to the Will of the One Who was in Him and in Whom He lived, any perceived lines between earth and heaven disappeared.
One of the astronauts commented on their space flight. He noted that when you view earth from space, you realize that all the lines we have artificially created do not exist. It is one glorious unity of God’s Creation!
Matthew 3:16-17 (NLT) records,
After His Baptism,
as Jesus came up out of the water,
the heavens were opened
and He saw The Spirit of God descending like a dove
and settling on Him.
And A Voice from Heaven said,
“This is My Dearly Loved Son,
Who brings Me Great JOY!”
What a grand introduction of Jesus to the world! And yet, that moment, as public as it was, was a celebration of the intimate relationship between Father, Son and Holy Spirit, that had existed for all time before and yet to come. It was this complete Unity that Jesus was about to reveal to the world through His public ministry!
Points to Ponder
How do you respond when you recognize you are in the Presence of Jesus?
What is Jesus asking you to do for Him? Will you humbly do what He asks?
Are you doing what is right? Are you living a Life that shows His Mercy to everyone? Are you walking humbly with God, acknowledging in every way that He is God and you are not?
Have you made a public declaration of your Love for God?
Have you experienced God’s Love and Approval of you as His Beloved Child, Who brings Him Great JOY?
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