Learning from John the Baptist

Read: Luke 11:1-4

Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples. (v. 1)

When you and I read the Bible, we can learn from and admire biblical characters, but God is always the hero. You and I, like each biblical character, are imperfect and sinful by nature. Over the past two weeks, we have looked at passages from the life and ministry of John the Baptist. What does God want to teach you from John’s life? Here are a few of the many ways that the Holy Spirit might use these passages, John’s example, and God’s faithfulness to help you grow as a disciple of Jesus:

1. Obedience to God’s call. God wants to work through you, just as he worked through John. He has given you gifts, empowers you by his Spirit, and opens doors of opportunity for you to love him, love others, and impact the culture and kingdom for Christ. Will you follow his leading?

2. Humility. How do our attitudes and actions mirror John’s claim that “[Christ] must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30)?

3. Prayer. The disciples of Jesus said, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples” (Luke 11:1). That means John taught his disciples to pray, and John therefore depended on the power of prayer. Do you?

4. Faithfulness to the end. Despite doubt and suffering, John was faithful to the end. What will it take in your life to be able to say what the apostle Paul affirms in 2 Timothy 4:7-8? Friend, God is faithful, and he will help you through it all!

As you pray, use the Lord’s Prayer from Luke 11:2-4 as a guide.

About the Author

Rev. Steve Petroelje is a specialized transition pastor who serves vacant churches and helps them assess health, pursue missional effectiveness, and conduct a pastoral search process. He is the past-president of the Words of Hope Board of Trustees.

This entry is part 15 of 15 in the series Prepare the Way