UV 2243/10000 The Increase
He must increase, but I must decrease.
John3 v 30
The attitude of John the Baptist vis-à-vis Jesus was not one of rivalry but of humbling himself to give all glory to Jesus. John knew that his destiny was to be the precursor or forerunner heralding the Messiah, calling people unto repentance but that his mission, calling and anointing was far smaller and less significant than the anointing of Jesus. John did not resent the increasing stature of Jesus and his own declining significance. He said that he was not worthy enough to tie the sandals of Jesus. He knew that if he baptised people in water, Jesus baptises people with the Holy Spirit.
We need to emulate the attitude of John the Baptist and pray that “Jesus must increase in us while we must decrease.” Our egos must decline or decrease. Our pride and love of the world should decrease. His love and compassion in us should increase. Our own abilities and wisdom should play a lesser role and we should allow the grace and wisdom of Jesus to take control of our lives. John the Baptist was surrendering his claim of leadership to Jesus. We too should surrender the leadership and influence of our lives to Jesus. It implies a steady giving up on our own claims to greatness, fame, rights- a constant dying to self and living for Christ.
Once John had fulfilled his role as the herald of the King of Kings Jesus, he was imprisoned and brutally beheaded by Herod to please the latter’s wife and her daughter. We too after fulfilling the God-given responsibilities and role assigned to us should prepare to vacate our place on earth and leave for our heavenly abode. While we live we must constantly experience a decrease of our own selves and the increase of Jesus in our lives. His character and His word should increasingly impact and influence our thoughts, words and actions. The power and work of the Holy Spirit increases in us even as our reliance on our own understanding and knowledge declines over time. The anointing of the Holy Spirit will teach us all things. John experienced some doubt whether Jesus is the Messiah while he was imprisoned. Jesus told his disciples to tell him about the great miracles that He was doing as the evidence of His being the Messiah. Our fears, suspicions, doubts, regrets should decline and our faith, hope, love in Christ should increase as we see the evidence of the miracles Jesus has done in our lives this far. Our assurance of salvation in Jesus must be so sure that every act of us should be designed to bring greater glory to Jesus.
Prateep V Philip