Sunday, February 5, 2012

What is Greatness?

If someone were to ask you the question, “Who was the greatest person who ever lived?” what would be your answer?

Moses?  King David? the Apostle Paul?  Abraham Lincoln?

What about. . . .John the Baptist?

Jesus said, “Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist.” (Matthew 11:11)

But why?  Why was John the Baptist considered the greatest person who ever lived?

He wasn’t the son of a king.  He was the son of a common, elderly couple.
He was despised by many and eventually decapitated.
He lived in isolation. 
He fearlessly rebuked the people for sin.
He lived a separate way of life.
He didn’t even become a priest (like his father).

But when his miraculous birth was announced, Gabriel told Zacharias he would be “great in the eyes of the Lord.”

John would be the promised prophet who would prepare the way for the life and ministry of the Messiah.  He would point many to Christ.

But Gabriel also said he would be filled with the Holy Spirit, “even from his mother’s womb.”  God’s Spirit would be in total control of his life.

Others would have a huge influence – his godly mother and a wicked woman who arranged his death.

But the greatest influence on his life would be that of the Holy Spirit.

John the Baptist became “great,” because of who GOD made him to be.

But listen to what Jesus said next:  “Notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”

Because greatness isn’t determined by. . .
What kind of human influences we’ve had in our lives, or haven’t had.
Who our family was, or wasn’t.
What we did for the Lord, or what we didn’t do.

True greatness is determined by what GOD has done in our lives.

It doesn’t matter whether we’re called . . .
"the least",
"greater than", or
"the greatest".

If we’re seeking to be filled with His Spirit – letting HIM have total control – we’re considered “great in the eyes of the Lord.”

“GREAT” . . . .because of what God is making us to be.

(Click here to listen to the lesson on "Elisabeth and Herodias.")

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