Day 83: Ministry

Luke 7:29-30 :

When all the people and the tax collectors heard this, they declared God to be just, having been baptized with John’s baptism. But the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected the counsel of God, not being baptized by him themselves.

John prepared souls for Jesus and He did an excellent job of it. As I was saying last time, Jesus declared that John had done an excellent job and this is the evidence. The people who were baptized by John believed in the Messiah, but those who weren’t came against Him instead. John’s ministry was made a vital part of the success of Jesus’ ministry. I have no reason to believe that this is not the same for us as Christians today.

It makes sense that Jesus expects us to do a ministry and He is depending upon us. I am sure that He has backup plans but they are far from His desired way of using you to be a part of His plan. John was used to actually prepare the people in Israel who would become believers. What an amazing occupation. I think of John like a worker on a farm whose job it was to break up the hard ground and prepare it for planting. The analogy is pretty good because, as we read in these verses, those who were “prepared” by John “declared God to be just” but those who didn’t “rejected the counsel of God.” This was an extremely important ministry that God gave to a man!

We should not feel insignificant in the slightest degree when we participate in the ministry of bringing people to Jesus. From this passage, I must believe that Jesus is personally affected by the work of our ministry and He doesn’t take it lightly. We should also recognize from these verses that recognizing our true condition before God can affect whether or not we come to Jesus to be saved.

As we read earlier, John was a “hell fire” preacher in that he wouldn’t bother to make the message of God easier to digest for the newbies. He called the people “brood of vipers” when they asked questions. He basically put people down instead of making them feel comfortable. This had the affect of causing people to realize their true condition before God. People need help because people are bad and John’s message made sense to “the people and the tax collectors” because they realized they were bad, but “the Pharisees and the lawyers” didn’t see that they had a problem. Had John not spoken these harsh words, these poor people would still not have understood their true condition and failed to hear what their Messiah had to to say to them. May God bring more truth-speaking preachers to us today so that people can learn their true condition before God.