He must increase and I must decrease | Devotional | John 1:35-40

Last time we learned that Jesus Christ is the One who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. This happens when man hears the gospel message and believes with all his heart.

Today we will read the following verses from chapter 1 of the Gospel of John:

Again the next day John was standing with two of his disciples, and he looked at Jesus as He walked, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. And Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, “What are you seeking?” They said to Him, “Rabbi (which translated means Teacher), where are You staying?” He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they came and saw where He was staying, and they stayed with Him that day; it was about the tenth hour. One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. (John 1:35-40 NASB)

We notice from this passage that John the Baptist had disciples. In fact, discipleship was a widespread phenomenon at the time. One of them mentioned here is Andrew, who was later named an apostle of Jesus Christ. According to historical sources, it was the apostle Andrew who brought the gospel to our lands.

When John told the two disciples that Jesus was the Lamb of God, they decided to follow Him because they were curious to see where He lived and to hear His teaching. John the Baptist was not at all bothered by this. One day someone came to John and told him that Jesus was baptizing and that everyone was following him, and John answered:

A person can receive not even one thing unless it has been given to him from heaven. You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, ‘I am not the Christ,’ but, ‘I have been sent ahead of Him.’ He must increase, but I must decrease. (John 3:27-28,30 NASB)

He reiterated his call to make the Lord Jesus known in Israel. And we, the disciples of Jesus, who believed in Him and decided to follow Him must have the same way of thinking – “Let Him increase, and let me decrease.”

God must be in the forefront of our lives, our neighbor in second place, and ourselves in third place. I wear a bracelet that reads, “I am the third,” to remind me of this truth.

Let’s pray: “Our Father who art in heaven. I really want people to hear the gospel through me, to believe in the Lord Jesus wholeheartedly and to follow Him as the two disciples followed Him. The Lord Jesus must increase in my life, and I must decrease. Help me to be concerned with the interests of Your Kingdom and the needs of my neighbor, and to think of myself last. In the name of the Lord Jesus. Amen.” 

May God help us.

Translated by Liza Bîrlădeanu