How Should Workers for Jesus Speak of Themselves?

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

It is very important that Jesus’ followers know who they are and who they are not, and how to say so.

The Truth Squad

John 1.19 This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?”

Someone in authority is the person or persons in control. John was not considered an authority, but he spoke as one in control.

As we speak for Jesus there will be people who may question our authority to speak on his behalf. Either age or experience or education may be sited as a reason to question our speech. If we are serving God, we must not let any kind of intimidation keep us from doing what God has called us to do.

“Who are you?” How would you answer?

John 1.20-23He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, “I am not the Messiah.” 21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the prophet?” He answered, “No.” 22 Then they said to him, “Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said,

I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’”

as the prophet Isaiah said.

In response to the question, John stated three things that he was not. Knowing who we are not helps us focus on who we are.

May we all imitate who John was – a voice calling people to make a way for the Lord to come to our lives. The way we prepare the way for Jesus is to simply point to him through our actions and words.

Why we point to Jesus

John 1.24-28Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25 They asked him, “Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?” 26 John answered them, “I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, 27 the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.” 28 This took place in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.

Don’t miss the phrase, “among you stands one whom you do not know” (verse 26). Jesus is present, but people are not aware of is presence. People need someone like John the Baptist to point out that Jesus is present so they can turn to him.

Today’s Prayer

Dear God, may I realize who I am not, but also who I am. May I recognize you in every area of my life, so I can also point out your presence to others through my actions and words.

Your Turn

Please take you time reading this passage. Don’t read John like you would a quick article on Facebook or a newspaper. Ask yourself the questions that were asked of John and consider carefully your response.


  1. I have been given the opportunity to let my actions follow my words as I navigate this “valley of death” adjusting to the loss of my earthly “rock.” My true Rock is and always has been Christ. However, because Mike also built his life on the solid Rock of Christ, he was my earthly rock. He supported me even as I cared for him these past years. He has left me stronger by his example. He encouraged my spiritual growth and dependence on God for every small thing, building to this time when, instead of crumbling under the weight of loss, I can rest on The Rock and allow my walk to match my talk. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sad in a way I can’t explain. There is a large vacancy in this empty chair next to me. I keep wanting to call him, or text him – or ask him questions. But in the midst of that pain, I am comforted by who I am in Christ. Who he was (and is!) In Christ. And as John in the passage here, I know who I am not. I’m not stronger than anyone else. I’m not more spiritual than the next. I’m not worthy except through the blood of Christ. I can be simply a woman grieving for her husband with a peace that passes understanding. I can rest in Jesus, but not be paralyzed. I can mourn without breaking. I can offer this same comfort to others in our family. Knowing who Christ says I am and who I am not is freedom.

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