March 12, 2023

An Example of Greatness

Pastor: Jeff Bedwell Series: The Gospel Story Scripture: John 1:19–34, John 3:22–20

The Gospel Story 
An Example of Greatness 
John 1:19-34 & 3:22-30

Over time, we will all live in accordance with our understanding of greatness.  We will give our life to pursuing something and/or pleasing someone. 

Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” (Matthew 11:11, ESV)

Four Marks of John’s Greatness

  1. He Knew Who He Wasn’t (19-21)
  • Not the Messiah
  • Not Elijah (See Malachi 3:1; 4:5-6)

and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”” (Luke 1:17, ESV)

But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of Man will certainly suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.” (Matthew 17:12–13, ESV)

  • Not the Prophet

The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen—” (Deuteronomy 18:15, ESV)

  1. He Knew Who He Was (6-8,22-26)
  • A Man sent by God (6)

He was unique not just to be different, but to be obedient!

  • A Witness to the light (7-8)
  • A Voice (23)

A voice cries: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain.

(Isaiah 40:3–4, ESV)

  • A Baptizer (24-26)

John’s baptism was a public demonstration and identification of a person’s repentance

  1. He Knew Who Jesus Was (26-34)
  • Jesus’ Presence (26)
  • Jesus’ Greatness (27)
  • Jesus’ Purpose (29)
  • Jesus’ Nature (30-33)
  1. He Knew The Joy Of Fulfilling His God Given Role And Assignments (3:22-30)
  • The Security of God’s Sovereignty (27)
  • The Acceptance of His Humanity (28)
  • The Joy of being part of God’s purposes (29-30)

As The Forerunner His Role Was To:

  • Prepare the way
  • Get Out Of the way

Want To Have A Great Life?

  1. Prepare the highway of your heart to receive Jesus Christ The King
  2. Ask God for Humility to know who you are not
  3. Ask God for Wisdom to know who you are
  4. Passionately Fulfill your God-given roles and assignments
  5. Focus on pointing others to Jesus

“That man is most successful who attaches the affection of his followers more to Christ than to himself.”   Oswald Sanders

“People will figure out what we believe when they see how we live.”  Bob Goff


John’s message was simple—repent. Repent of unbelief, and turn instead to Jesus the Messiah by faith. That message is as true now as it was then. We do not only repent once, but do so daily as we are constantly turning from sin prompted by our unbelief and instead to faith in Jesus.

Making It Personal:

  • What understanding of “greatness” are you pursuing in your life?
  • What adjustments do you need to make in your life to follow Jesus’ understanding of greatness modeled in the life of John the Baptist 
  • Who can you share these truths with?

Ready to take your Next Step?

  • Text Next to 803-637-8484
  • Go to FBCFM.COM and click “Next Steps”

other sermons in this series

Sep 10


The Return of the King

Pastor: Jeff Bedwell Scripture: Revelation 19:1– 20:15 Series: The Gospel Story

Aug 20


Getting On God's Agenda

Pastor: Jeff Bedwell Scripture: Acts 10:1–48 Series: The Gospel Story

Aug 13



Pastor: Jeff Bedwell Scripture: Acts 9:1–43 Series: The Gospel Story