His Cousin

Elizabeth expressed her faith in the Lordship of Jesus, when she greeted Mary as the mother of her Lord, Lk 1:43-47. Elizabeth didn’t call Mary the mother of “God”, but the mother of “her Lord”, she understood God as raising the Messiah from her womb. Because of her faith, she raised John the Immersionist, giving the world a fulfilment to prophecy and one of the best examples of godly zeal. As parents we should make our children aware of God’s work around and in us, proving His Lordship as real.  Elizabeth & Zechariah were well acquainted with the powerful phrase, “hand of the Lord”, Luke 1:66, but never did John work a miracle. After 400 years of silence from God, God’s Spirit began to work again in John The Immersionist, he was full of the Spirit, (Luke 1:13-17). We too are commanded to grow in Him, Eph. 5:18. The effect of making ourselves aware of God’s power, is not miracles, but He does produce fruit, changing our character.
We should all be wanting to grow His fruit, especially in view of John The Immersionist’s warning, God says through John, “And now also the axe is laid to the root of the trees; therefore every tree which does not bring forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire”, Matthew 3:10. 

God wants to grow the best in us, from the very beginning. Humanity has been too keen on an alternative fruit, which is seen in Adam & Eve eating the forbidden fruit.  We certainly do not want to live lives that make other people think we have grown fruit, but inwardly, we know we are empty, because of the way Jesus treated the fig tree, one “day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. Then he said to the tree, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard him say it. (Mark 11:12-14).

Later on “When evening came, they went out of the city. In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered! “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered., Mark 11:19-22. 

If we have faith that God will provide fruit in our lives and quit trying to give ourselves or other people the false impression that we are fruitful spiritually, then God will bless us, strengthen us and help us enjoy being a Christian, so that others may become Christians too.  Jesus hates hypocrisy, and He killed the fig tree which gave a false impression.  It was “in leaf” but it was the wrong time of year to be “in leaf” and ready to pick fruit from, so when Jesus cursed it, he cursed it for it’s false hypocritical impression. Since this is the only record of Jesus killing something, we should make every effort to be honest with ourselves, God and others, when it comes to showing and using the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. So let us choose to give God everything we need to grow the fruit of the Spirit which can only be found in Christ. See Galatians 5:16-23, love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, faithfulness, kindness, gentleness, self-control. 

 John the immersionist (the friend of the bridegroom) stated Jesus had a bride, Jn. 3:25-30. It is God’s intention for Christians to live as the Bride for Christ.  What is your intention to view Jesus as?  If we want to view Him as a judge, then we will live our lives cowering to his authority in fear of making mistakes, but if we view him as our husband, protector, a wise provider and loving head, that sacrifices himself for our eternal future, we will live life more abundantly.  Physically we are what we eat, Spiritually we are what we believe, think, read and watch. John the immersionist was the epitome of humility, John 1:27 & 3:30, Matthew 3:14.

Yet his zeal was the embodiment of Elijah’s spirit, why? Because John knew his greatness lay in service and it’s benefit, Mt. 11:11-14. John was a signal to Jesus, that it was time to serve. He gave Jesus the impetus to minister in the most humble subservient way and The Spirit led Him to obey His baptism. Every follower of Christ should begin serving with true humility in submiting ourselves to His baptism. Therein lay a promise for eternal greatness in equality with our heroes like John.

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