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GROWING IN CHRIST

"A Living Witness"

Date published: 11/17/2011
 
John 1:34 “I (John the Baptist speaking) have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God." (NIV)  
 
John the Baptist was an inspiring herald to Jesus.  His life and teaching inspired many to turn to God.  Many followed John the Baptist as well as his teachings.  Yet when Jesus came, John clearly knew his mission—to testify to the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.  Human nature would make one want to continue what he/she was doing, to bask in the glory of the crowds, and to focus on his/her own desires and aspirations.  It would be easy to understand how John could get off mission by continuing in his ministry regardless of God’s call on his life.  John did not lose sight of his purpose but stayed focused on his mission to testify to the Son of God.  2 Corinthians 5:18-20 says “Who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. Like John, you also have a mission — the ministry of being used by God to reconcile the unsaved to Christ.  God wants you to live every realm of your life as His personal ambassador to bring others to Christ.  You are not to live a compartmentalized life where you segregate the secular from the spiritual.  You are to live so that your life represents Christ to others all the time.  In this passage Paul takes it one step farther by saying your life should become an appeal to others so that you attract others to Christ.  You do not just have a job to earn money, but to also be used by God to attract others to Christ.  You do not play soccer only for exercise, competition, and pleasure, but to also attract others to Christ.  You do not even go to church for just spiritual growth, but to be used by God to encourage others in their faith and to attract others to Christ.  It is easy for your life on earth to become about you instead of allowing God to make His appeal to others through you. You become an appeal to others to attract them to Christ by your life reflecting Christ in you.  Being Christ-like will exceed your human capacity – but, through the Holy Spirit, God’s light can shine through you.  Dwell constantly within the presence of Jesus so that your life becomes a living appeal to others. 

2 Corinthians 3:1-3 “Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you?  You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody.  You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.”  (NIV)


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