Reading: Matthew 3:1-12
Think about how John the Baptist dressed, talked, and acted. Then tell me, and be honest ~ if someone like John the Baptist showed up at your school today, would you be his friend? If he came to your house, would you call your neighbors to come over and meet him? If he showed up at worship next week, would he be greeted and shown a place to sit?
John was such a unique person. That’s because he had a unique job: to tell others that Jesus was coming. God had been preparing for John for centuries. John’s life had to be very different from others, so that they would listen to his message. Was John successful in getting his message out to others? What do these verses say about his ministry?
I am not saying that we have to be like John, going about in camel’s skins and crying out at others to repent. Remember, John’s task on earth was very, very unique.
But we have to realize that our lives bear a message as well. What do our words, our dress, our behaviors say about us? What kind of preaching are we doing by the way we treat others and the way we conduct ourselves?
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO YOU
The most beautiful story given to man
Was written long ago
By Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
Of Christ and His mission below.
And you write a gospel, a chapter a day,
By your deeds, whether faithless or true;
When others read it, what will they think
of the gospel according to you?
It’s a wonderful story, the Gospel of love,
As it shines with Christ’s life divine.
Oh, that its truth might be told again
In the story of your life and mine.
You are writing each day a letter to all;
Take care that the writing is true.
It’s the only gospel some people may read,
The gospel according to you.
~ Author Unknown
For Further Study:
- Read 1 Corinthians 3:2-3. How can young people present a good “epistle” from Jesus and the apostles to this dying world? Read these verses about what God expects from young people: Psalm 148:12-14; Proverbs 20:11; Ecclesiastes 12:1; Ephesians 6:1-3; Colossians 3:20.
- Being different doesn’t mean you have to be a hermit, or you have to upset everyone so that you’ll be heard. It means having that beautiful, Christ-like spirit that makes others notice that your life is directed by God’s Word. How are you doing this in your daily life? When you are in school, with friends, in sports or clubs, how is the gospel message shining through you?