Most people focus on the first part of John 3, but I want to concentrate on John the Baptist’s testimony of Jesus. It should be ours because it tells us a great deal. His disciples followed him, but when Jesus came on the scene they listened to him too. John had preached of the Messiah’s coming. He came. John baptized him. John kept preaching even in jail. He sent his disciples to Jeus asking Jesus if he was the one to come. Now we can’t frown too much upon John. We do the same when we are discouraged. John was finding out he had to decrease so that Jesus could increase. When the disciples came back they presented Jesus’ words to him. John could have said “you have to listen to both of us” but instead he realized that he had to decrease so that Jesus could increase. Being saved isn’t just one of the most wonderful things that has happened to us; it is the best, most important thing! Jesus should be the most important person in our life. As we live, we should live remembering that Jesus is Savior of our life, our reason for living. He is our everything. It’s not enough to share him at church. The world needs to see him in our life everyday.
John 3:22 After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized. 23 And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized. 24 For John was not yet cast into prison. 25 Then there arose a question between some of John’s disciples and the Jews about purifying. 26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. 27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. 28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. 29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. 30 He must increase, but I must decrease. 31 He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. 32 And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. 33 He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. 34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. 35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. 36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
John was baptizing in one spot in the Jordan and on down Jesus was teaching and baptizing. Where’s your spot in the river? What we learn here is a pattern and example. After we’re saved we are to be baptized. Jesus is our Savior and that should be our testimony, our song. “This is my story; this is my song. Praising my Savior all the day long.” In order to praise him as we should, we have to keep in mind what he has done. Early in chapter 3 Jesus let Nicodemus know that each person has to be born again. Everyone must believe on the Son of God–Jesus. As John preached up the river, he was now able to preach that the Messiah had come to take away the sins of the world. We may not understand it, but we must believe it.
Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins. John was the miracle son of Zacharias and Elisabeth. Jesus was the virgin born son of Mary and his father was God Almighty. John’s cousin was also his Savior. There was some conflict. People began to ask why Jesus, whom he had baptized, was over at another place doing the same thing. John didn’t fall for it. In verse 27 he said A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. He was saying that Jesus couldn’t do what he did except with authority from heaven. John bowed to that. We must let others know what we trust is the authority of our Savior. We should exalt him. We’re children of God because we trust in the Son of God. We’ve received the adoption.
Look at verse 28. We have to watch our ego. If someone brags on us, watch it. Remember Jesus makes us who we are. Never think that people can’t make it without you. Sure they can. They are trusting Jesus, not you. Jesus is the authority and John said so. He was sent to point the way to Jesus. That same commission is on us. We’re called to to before others pointing them to Jesus. In verse 29 he said He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. We are the bride and Jesus is the bridegroom. We are friends of the bridegroom. We’re not co-Saviors. Isn’t it good to be friends with the bridegroom. If we can’t be friends with each other, we can’t be friends of the bridegroom. When I come to church I want to hear from the bridegroom. Otherwise, it’s all in vain.
In verse 30 is where we see that Jesus must be magnified. He gets no bigger when we do it, but by decreasing ourselves the fullness of Jesus Christ is revealed. Others see Jesus more when they see less of us. He is above all. John reminds us of that in verse 31. The Son of Man came but he’s gone back to heaven. We belong to him if we’re saved. Jesus is above all. No power, no sin, no bounds. He is above it all. We can make sure others get the gospel. We are proof that Jesus saves. If we fail, we’re telling the world that Jesus is a failure. God is true, never a failure. His word is trustworthy and reliable. It will stand when the world is long gone. That’s how he can take hell-bound sinners and wash them clean. Through the gift of God to us–Jesus–we are made gifts to the Father. Act like a gift of God. Honor him everyday.
John did. He was beheaded. His mouth was probably still moving for the glory of God when he was killed. The last word we say should be “Jesus.” Make Jesus your testimony. Be determined not to be ashamed of the Master.