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John 3:22-30, Jesus and John the Baptist

Monday, January 29

John and Jesus Baptizing

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

Jesus and John were both baptizing -- a cleansing and an offering of new life. John had come on the scene before Jesus, so many of John's followers were confused as to who Jesus was, and why he was baptizing when John was already doing so. Remember, they did not have the benefit of hindsight -- they didn't yet know who Jesus was and what he would do. People thought they needed to decide whether to follow John or follow Jesus. John told his followers he had come to pave the way for Jesus. John's endorsement of Jesus was a crucial step toward unifying God's prophets to deliver a united message -- that their loving God was going to deliver them once again, this time delivering the whole world alongside Israel.

Narrative Lectionary Text: John 3:22-30

After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he spent some time there with them and baptized. John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim because water was abundant there; and people kept coming and were being baptized— John, of course, had not yet been thrown into prison.

Now a discussion about purification arose between John’s disciples and a Jew. They came to John and said to him, ‘Rabbi, the one who was with you across the Jordan, to whom you testified, here he is baptizing, and all are going to him.’ John answered, ‘No one can receive anything except what has been given from heaven. You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, “I am not the Messiah, but I have been sent ahead of him.” He who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. For this reason my joy has been fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease.’

Earlier Event: January 28
John 3:1-21, Nicodemus