The third in a series of 8 sermons
Common questions we ask when we meet strangers are ‘What’s your name’ and ‘Where did you come from?”.
In this series we explore the identity of Jesus and explore the validity of His claim:
“I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”. (John 14:6)
Readings reproduced on this page:
The Holy Bible: New International Version. 1996, 1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan
Malachi 3:1–4; 4:5-6 (NIV84)
1“See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the Lord Almighty.
2But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap.
3He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness,
4and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in former years.
Malachi 4:5–6 (NIV84)
5“See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes.
6He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.”
John 1:6–9 (NIV84)
6There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John.
7He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe.
8He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.
9The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.
15John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ ”
16From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.
17For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
18No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.
19Now this was John’s testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was.
20He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Christ.”
21They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” He answered, “No.”
22Finally they said, “Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”
23John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, “I am the voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord.’ ”
24Now some Pharisees who had been sent
25questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?”
26“I baptize with water,” John replied, “but among you stands one you do not know.
27He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.”
28This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing.
29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
30This is the one I meant when I said, ‘A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’
31I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel.”
32Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.
33I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’
34I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God.”