The first thought that enters the learned Christian mind is this verse of Scripture has absolutely nothing to do with Christmas. Wrong! It has everything to do with Jesus Our Christ’s coming, No Christ, No Christmas! John had to come before Jesus as God had promised in Old Testament Scripture; “Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me,” (Malachi 3:1) and confirmed by Jesus word-for-word in Matthew 11:10. John came first, as promised, Jesus came and the spirit of His arrival lives on in our celebration of the Christmas season.
The relevance of John’s statement lies in his recognition of his personal limitations and the unlimited power of Him (Christ) who was to come. Have I ever come to a place in my relationship with Jesus where I say—“I indeed—but He?” Until that moment does come I will never know what the baptism of the Holy Ghost means. I indeed am at an end, I cannot do a thing, but He began to work—He does the things no one else, including me, can ever do. Am I ready for His coming? Jesus cannot come as long as there is anything in the way, either of good or evil in my life. When He comes am I going to be ready for Him to shine the light on or post on Facebook every wrong thing I have done? It is at this point in my life that He comes, when I am ready to deal with the consequences of His coming. Wherever I know I am unclean, He will put His feet; wherever I think I am clean, He will withdraw them.
Repentance does not bring a sense of sin, but a sense of unspeakable unworthiness. When I repent, I realize that I am totally helpless. I know within the depths of me that I am not worthy even to carry His sandals. Have I repented like that? Or is there a lingering suggestion of standing up for myself? If I have not repented to the level of helplessness and the smallest hint of self-defense, God cannot come into my life, because I have not completed my repentance, yet.
“He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and fire.” John does not speak of the baptism of the Holy Ghost as an experience, but as a work performed by Jesus Christ. “He shall baptize you.” The only conscious experience those that are baptized with the Holy Ghost ever have is a sense of total unworthiness. Jesus came into the world to “seek and save the lost,” it is only after we find ourselves humbled at His feet in total submission can we be saved and He baptizes us with the Holy Ghost.
I indeed was this and that; but He came, and a marvelous and wonderful thing happened, He changed me, He has touched me and made me whole. I am at a place this Christmas where He does everything and I do nothing more than His will. John came before Jesus and left us in a most unfortunate way, but of all the joys of Christmas, the greatest is that Jesus Christ is not coming, He is here in me! Be blessed and bless someone in Jesus’ name.
Grady Norman Greene, Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Our Christ
- I Baptize You with the Holy Ghost and With Fire (pjsprayerline.blogspot.com)
- The Son Is Given (samuelatgilgal.wordpress.com)