This week in The Gospel Project for Kids, our journey continues in John 3. John the Baptist, the forerunner of the Savior, had a special calling to prepare people for Jesus. When Jesus’ ministry began, some of John’s disciples came to John, concerned about Jesus’ disciples baptizing those who believed. Perhaps they felt the need to defend John’s ministry, but John understood who he was and who Jesus is. Consider these comparisons as John explained that Jesus was greater than John.
First, who were they? John was clear: “I am not the Messiah” (John 3:28). Using a metaphor of a Jewish wedding, John stated that he was not the bridegroom, but the groom’s friend. Jesus is the bridegroom. (John 3:29) Where did they come from? John was from the earth, and he belonged to the earth. Jesus comes from above and is above all. (John 3:31) Next, what did they do? John said, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” As the predecessor, John was a witness to the Light. (John 1:7-8) He was a voice in the wilderness, and Jesus is the Word. (John 1:14,23) John baptized with water, but Jesus baptized with the Spirit. (John 1:33)
Finally, why were they here? John went before Jesus and rejoiced with Him. (John 3:28-29) Jesus came to give eternal life. (John 3:36)
John the Baptist had told people to get ready for Jesus, the promised Messiah. Now that Jesus was there, John’s mission was complete. John the Baptist joyfully stepped aside as Jesus began His earthly ministry. Jesus’ earthly ministry had begun, and He would obediently do God’s will to bring salvation to sinners.