Controlling The "John" Moments
John the Baptist was the forerunner for Jesus, preparing the way for his arrival; before Jesus’ ministry was established, John the Baptist ministry was THE ministry. Jerusalem, all Judea, and all the region around the Jordan went out to him and were baptized. John the Baptist honored Jesus and acknowledge him as the Messiah, in Matthew 3:11 NKJV he states, “….but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” John 1:33 – 34 ESV, “I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’34 And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.”
However, something changed… John was thrown in Herod Antipas’s prison waiting likely execution and in a moment of doubt and offence he had his disciples to ask Jesus was, “he the expected one, or do we look for someone else?” (Luke 7:18 – 23).
Jesus understanding the root in which that question was asked didn’t respond to the disciples first. He cured the people of diseases, afflictions, evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind. After he displayed the gifts of healing and of miracles he told John’s disciples to report what they have seen and heard; but Jesus last statement to the disciples displayed what was the real reason for John sending them, “Blessed is he who does not take offense at Me.”
John became offended by his own cousin (Jesus)… Think about this, John had THE ministry, and ever since Jesus showed up John’s ministry started to declined, with him eventually being thrown in jail. Jesus now had the recognition and the same people who were following John now followed Jesus. The offense occurred due to their relationship changing. John wasn’t the focal point anymore, Jesus was; Jesus needed John to baptized him and now John had to transition to needing Jesus. Offenses occurs with transition and position. John didn’t need to know if Jesus was the Messiah, he knew who he was, but offense came once he had to apply that knowledge in his current situation.
How do you control the John moments? Keeping your focus on your purpose. In prison, John was distracted by the situation and his focus shifted. His focus was no longer on God’s word but now on Jesus’ position. We have to be fixed on lifting our eyes to the hills where our help comes from. We have to be determined and diligent in putting on the mind of Christ to stay locked in purpose to control the John moments.