Audio/Video podcast covering Matthew 3:
In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
John the baptist had the ministry of “Preparing the way of the Lord” and “Making His paths straight”, the old testament prophecy found in Isaiah 40 says; “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.”
In this prophecy it is talking of one preparing the way for God. John the Baptist was preparing the way for Jesus, so this here was further evidence of Jesus being “God with us” speaking to His Divine nature.
-For those who doubted Jesus being the “God man” there is so much just in the first 3 chapters of the new testament making it clear who Jesus is and Him being Messiah. #DoNotDoubt for those who do, search the scriptures and you will see that they point to JESUS as Messiah/King of the Jews.
John the Baptist was in the wilderness(along the Dead Sea) with clothes made of camels hair and a leather girdle(waist belt used to carry things) and a diet of Locust and wild honey preaching saying; “Repent ye: for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.”
-Repentance – sorrow for sin and changing from the sinful way.
-Brethren we MUST repent. Anything in our life that is not pleasing in the sight of God we need to “Repent” from it. John the baptist taught Repent, Jesus taught repent, so much throughout the old testament the Lord was sending through the prophets the Word urging the People of God to Repent!
Now that Jesus has been crucified for the sins of the world we can have “right standing” with God upon our Repentance and Faith in Christ Jesus. It would be foolish for us to have our Faith in God and Christ Jesus but still continue in sin.
Brethren Repentance is Required. Upon our Faith in Jesus Christ and baptism, there should have been and NEEDS to be Repentance. A confession of our sin and Turning Away from them.
The Blood of Jesus makes us white as snow, but sin dirties our garments right back up. If any among us are walking in(living daily in consistent) sins, the Lord is prompting you to Repent today. Confess unto God whatever it is you are doing against His will(He already knows what you are doing wrong, but the desired outcome is that YOU acknowledge your wrong in His sight and that YOU need HIS forgiveness for the wrong) and commit to living a CHANGED life from the sin you were in through the Power of the Holy Spirit!
-Let us as one Body in Christ, go forward living this Genuinely Changed life proving Repentance not only to this world, but most importantly to God! Let us have this NEW life in Christ surrendered unto God showing Him that we appreciate the second chance He gave us and no longer compromising it for anything of this world again.
-The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand – Jesus Christ. John was warning the people by saying “the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” really meaning Jesus the King is coming, hurry up and do right while you still have a chance.
-We have a similar warning today, the return of Jesus Christ is coming(when? We do not know, but likely sooner than we think). The body of Christ is made of believers, but not all in the body may be living the life that the Lord expects of them. It is possible that some in the body of Christ need to do as John the baptist urged and Repent because the return of jesus christ is soon to come and we do not want to be left behind because we were not ready when the master returned.
-Here is an excerpt from a commentary regarding the kingdom of heaven:
“the time of the singing of birds, or of pruning, is come; the time for Israel to be redeemed is come; the time for the uncircumcision to be cut off is come; the time that the kingdom of the Cuthites (Samaritans or Heathens) shall be consumed is come; and the time that “the kingdom of heaven shall be revealed” is come, as it is written, “and the Lord shall be king over all, the earth.””
-John the baptist was not concerned about the normal attire of the people in that time or the more common food the people of the land were eating. John the baptist was living in submission to the will of the father. His appearance (strange because he was not as the rest of the people of the land were outwardly) likely helped the people to understand this man was a prophet of God. Maybe it would have been more challenging for the people to believe a man that dressed like the world, talked like the world, lived like the world but John was different, very different and it likely helped the ears of people to be more open to the Words of God coming out of his mouth.
5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
Many people in Jerusalem and all around Judea, and the region all around the Jordan river were coming to be baptized of John in the Jordan river.
-Brothers/Sisters; these people who heard the preaching of John the baptist, took action! They came confessing their sins and being baptized(washing away their sins).
When urged to Repent because the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand they did just that.
They desired to be clean and ready for this coming Kingdom of Heaven.
-Are the brethren among us ready? If Heaven(Jesus Christ) comes tonight is the Bride of Christ(the body of Christ) ready? Will all of us be counted as a faithful bride with this life for Christ and brought to heaven OR will some of us be counted as an unfaithful bride and left behind to suffer on this earth while God’s people who were Faithful go ahead to Heaven to be in the presence of the Lord!?!
Confess your sins unto God * Ask for His Forgiveness * Believe in Jesus Christ(His death on the cross was payment for your sins – He is the Son of God – He is the Messiah/King of the Jews(all descendants of Abraham)) * Be Baptized(washing away your sins – going in the water you, coming back up a NEW you in Christ Jesus – Born Again – New Life) * Repent(go forward living a Changed life – not the SAME life but now you know about Jesus(NO), NEW life/Free life in Christ Jesus(YES) – Same outward body with a NEW Spirit dwelling inside).
There is Blessing to receive for God’s people(those living according to His will by Faith) there is eternal punishment for the Unrepentant.
The Pharisees and Sadducees came to John’s baptism and John spoke to them saying;
“O generation of Vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:”
-Simply put, John was warning the Pharisees and Sadducees to demonstrate NEW behavior that proves a change of heart and a conscious decision to turn away from sin. He was careful not have a baptism just for the show of putting people in the water. John was sure to make it clear to these people who he knew had no intention of confessing their sins because they did not feel that they needed to because of their relation of Abraham.
-Some people today may have been submerged into water because everyone else was doing it or because they wanted to for some vainglory, but God’s Will is that we bring forth fruit, God’s Will is that we bring forth a New Changed life led by His precious Holy Spirit.
-Let us bring forth fruits of the Spirit in our New Life for Christ. Let us be found as fruitful servants when the Lord returns.
The Word of God suggest that the Pharisees and Sadducees trusted that because they were descendants of abraham that they essential were already “right with God”.
John the baptist warns; “the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire”
Consider the Axe as the Judgement of God, consider the bottom or root of the tree to be the descendants of Abraham. The Judgement of God is coming to knock down these descendants of Abraham that do not produce any fruit(no evidence of living according to God’s Will).
John warned that his baptism is with water but Jesus to come will be baptizing with the Holy Ghost and fire. He let the people know that Jesus will be coming to gather the wheat(those that follow Him and obey the will of God) and He will also burn up the chaff(the people who will not repent and continue to live in sin) will be burned eternally with unquenchable fire(fire that can not be put out).
13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
Jesus obeyed God’s plan to be baptized of John the baptist in the Jordan river. John also obeyed the will of God by baptizing Jesus though he needed to be baptized of Jesus. This was all done to “fulfil all righteousness”.
-As Jesus came up from being baptized; The heavens were opened to Him, He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and landing on him and a voice came from heaven saying; “this is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
-God the Father
-Jesus the Son of God
-The Holy Spirit of God(dove)