Superintendent: Assistant Pastor Jerald L. Bryant
Sunday Morning: 10:30 - 11:30 am
Christlike Ministries of Deliverance International, Inc.
Sunday School Department
Lesson: John 1:29-34;
Time of Action: 26 A.D.;
Place of the action: East of the Jordan River



By the end of the lesson, we will:
EXPLORE John’s account of Jesus’ baptism, RELIVE emotions felt while observing or participating in a baptism; and ASSESS how Christians live out their baptismal covenant..



I. INTRODUCTION.  Trey and Gwen were newlyweds. They met while volunteering with their church youth group. Trey had immediately noticed Gwen’s outgoing personality and her sincere desire to seek God in her life. Trey was equally
sincere in his desire to seek God, but still struggled sometimes as a new believer. Gwen admired his simple, easygoing nature and his willingness to work out his relationship with God. She knew that God was going to use him to minister to
others. Trey hadn’t been baptized yet and decided that he wanted to take this next step. Gwen agreed that this was a great idea. On the day of the baptism ceremony, Gwen looked on proudly as Trey joined others at the front of the church.
As she watched Trey being baptized by their pastor Glen couldn’t help but clap wildly. Gwen noted that his face seemed brighter than ever. Trey’s baptism was a turning point in his relationship with God. Afterward, Trey’s confidence was
strong. He was more bold. He began to readily share Christ with others and became a powerful blessing to other men in the church. In today’s lesson, we’ll discuss John the Baptist’s ministry of water baptism and his announcement of Jesus’
ministry of Spirit baptism.
Under the Mosaic system of the Old Testament, different animals were sacrificed, such as oxen, cattle, goats, turtledoves, pigeons, sheep and lambs.  The lamb was the most docile and helpless of all these animals.  
Lambs willingly followed their shepherd and when sacrificed they never offered any resistance.  Jesus didn’t come as the “ox of God” or the “goat of God.”  He was the Lamb of God.  This week’s lesson reveals the importance of Jesus as the
Lamb of God.



King James Version (KJV)
(J
ohn 1:29-34)

I.  JOHN THE BAPTIST’S PROCLAMATION CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:29-31)

29.
The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. 30. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. 31.
And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.

II. THE SPIRIT’S WITNESS CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:32-34)

32.
And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. 33. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit
descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
34. And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.


New International Version (NIV)
(
John 1: 29-34)                  

I.  JOHN THE BAPTIST’S PROCLAMATION CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:29-31)

29. The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30. This is the one I meant when I said, ‘A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before
me.’
31. I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel.”                      

II. THE SPIRIT’S WITNESS CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:32-34)

32.
Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. 33. And I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit
come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’
 34. I have seen and I testify that this is God’s Chosen One.”




II. BACKGROUND FOR THE LESSON.  At the time that John the Baptist began his ministry, expectations of the Messiah was very high among the Jews.  While John was baptizing in the Jordan, he drew much attention causing the
Jewish religious leaders to send a delegation of priests, Levites and Pharisees from Jerusalem to ask Him who he was (see John 1:19, 24).  John told them that he was not the Messiah (see John 1:20).  They continued to press him to find out
who he was (see John 1:21-22).  He finally told them that he was the voice crying in the wilderness calling on people to prepare the way for the Lord (see John 1:23).  They went on to ask him why he was baptizing if he wasn’t the Messiah or
some other prophet.  John replied declaring that his baptism was to prepare the people for the Messiah who was already among them; the One who was greater than John (see John 1:25-28).  This is where our lesson begins.


III. JOHN THE BAPTIST’S PROCLAMATION CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:29-31)

A. The Lamb of God (John 1:29).  Our first verse says “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”  The phrase “The next day” refers to the
day after the delegation from Jerusalem came to question John.  At that time, John saw Jesus coming to him where he was baptizing.  Seeing Jesus coming, John said to the crowd “
Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of
the world.
”  Much has been written about what biblical imagery caused John to describe Jesus this way.  Since the Bible doesn’t address this, we can only speculate.  However, we can be sure that the use of this phrase “Lamb of God” was
prompted by the Holy Spirit.  But in addition to that, it’s also quite possible that this description was a combination of the Passover lamb whose blood protected Israel’s firstborn sons from the angel of death (see Exodus chapter 12), and
Isaiah’s description of the Messiah as a suffering lamb (see Isaiah 53:7).  The lamb that substituted for Isaac (see Genesis 22:8, 13) also may have influenced John’s thinking.  As God’s Lamb, John said that Jesus “
taketh away the sin of the
world
.”  The word that is translated “taketh away” has the idea of lifting an object and carrying it away.  John saw this action as being already done.  The word “sin” here is singular viewing sin in its totality, consisting of all the individual sins of
mankind.  This sacrificial lamb would be a Substitute for the whole sinful world (see I Corinthians 5:7; I Peter 1:19; Revelation 5:6-10) not just for Israel as the Old Testament sacrifices were.  The Apostle Paul stated it this way: “God was in
Christ, reconciling the world unto himself” (see II Corinthians 5:19).  This doesn’t mean that everyone is reconciled, or has made peace with God through Christ’s death, but it means that reconciliation is available to everyone.  
Note:  By the
time John spoke the words in this verse, he had already baptized Jesus.  Even though John’s gospel doesn’t relate Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist, the other three gospels do indicating that it took place prior to what
is recorded in our lesson text (see Matthew 3:13-17; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21-23).  At that time, the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus like a dove and authenticated to John the Baptist that Jesus was the Messiah of
Israel.  The other three gospels also emphasize that after His baptism, Jesus was tempted forty days (see Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:12-13; Luke 4:1-13).  Therefore the events in our lesson most likely took place after
Jesus’ return following His temptation.


B. The One greater than John (John 1:30-31).  

          1. (vs. 30).  After introducing Jesus as the Lamb of God, John told his audience in this verse “
This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.”  The phrase “This is he of
whom I said
” indicates that John had referred to Christ as “a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me” on more than one occasion prior to this (see John 1:15, 27).  Now he could say that this was the One he had been
telling them about.  John was acknowledging that Jesus existed before him.  From a purely human standpoint, this was not true because John the Baptist was six months older than Jesus and he also began his ministry before Jesus began His.  
Having said this, it‘s clear from John’s statement that Jesus “
was before me” indicates that John the Baptist recognized Jesus as a divine Person who eternally existed.  John the Baptist was confirming that this Lamb of God was the exalted
One whose coming he had been proclaiming.  Identifying Jesus as “
a man which is preferred before me” was John’s way of recognizing Jesus as the preexistent One, highly honored by the Father.  Because of Jesus’ divine eternal nature,
John understood that Jesus had surpassed him in position, rank, and honor.  Even though John had experienced widespread acclaim from many Jews and even had some disciples, he still knew his role.  He gladly accepted his position as the
one to introduce the Messiah.  
Note:  It’s easy for a Christian who God has gifted with a successful ministry to get the big head from all the recognition it brings.  It’s easy to take credit for ourselves instead of giving it to
God, who deserves it.  When we take credit for what God has done, we are headed for spiritual failure and a ruined ministry.  It’s better to take a humble place just as John did who also declared “He must increase, but I
must decrease” (see John 3:30).


          2. (vs. 31).  John the Baptist went on to say in this verse “
And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.”  Just as the authorities in Jerusalem had not known
Jesus (see John 1:26), at one time John had not known Him either.  It’s true that John and Jesus were relatives and that John therefore knew Him as such, but they had grown up in opposite ends of the land and probably had seldom seen each
other.  But more importantly, John had not known that his relative, Jesus was the Messiah.  John came to realize the difference between knowing that Jesus grew up in the home of Joseph and Mary (see John 6:42) and knowing Him as Lord
and Saviour.  What John did know was that the reason for him “
baptizing with water” was to prepare for the Messiah’s manifestation or making Him known to Israel.  But up until the time John baptized Jesus the identity of the Messiah had
been withheld from him.  John’s baptism was an outward sign of repentance for those who wished to be prepared for the Messiah’s coming.


IV. THE SPIRIT’S WITNESS CONCERNING JESUS (John 1:32-34)

A.  The Holy Spirit’s descent upon Jesus (John 1:32).  This verse says “And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.”  The phrase “And John bare record” means
that what is about to follow was John’s testimony and introduces how John knew that Jesus was the Messiah.  In this verse, John the Baptist relates what took place when he baptized Jesus.  He said “
I saw the Spirit descending from
heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.
”  This was a crucial sign to John.  He had not known the Messiah’s identity up to that point, but this divinely given sign clearly identified Him.  The Holy Spirit has no visible bodily form, but He
appeared as a dove in order to show His presence in the life and ministry of Jesus.  John saw the Spirit come down from heaven like a dove and “
it abode upon him.”  The term “it” is better translated as “He” because the Holy Spirit is a
Person not a thing.  The fact that the Spirit “
abode upon him” reveals that the Holy Spirit remained on Jesus visibly for a period of time, indicating His permanent presence with Jesus (see John 3:34).  Note:  From the way Matthew and
Mark describe this scene, it appears that the Spirit lighting on Christ like a dove could only be seen by Jesus and John the Baptist.  For Jesus, it was confirmation of the Father’s approval and empowerment for His
ministry.  For John the Baptist, this sight confirmed that Jesus was without doubt the One for whom John had prepared the people.
    


B. The significance of the event (John 1:33-34).  

          1. (vs. 33).  
In this verse, John the Baptist said “And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is
he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
”  Repeating that he didn’t know Jesus as the Messiah before he baptized Him, John then explained how he came to know Jesus was the Messiah.  The phrase “he that sent me to baptize with
water
” refers to God the Father who gave John his ministry of baptism.  At some point earlier, God had informed John the Baptist that the Person “Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he
which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
”  In other words, the Person whom John saw the Spirit descending and remaining on was the One who would baptize with the Holy Ghost, the Messiah.  Note:  John’s baptism, using water,
identified repentant sinners with him and others who stood ready to receive the Messiah.  However, the Messiah would identify believers with Himself and other believers through the baptism of the Holy Spirit by giving
divine power for a new life.  The baptism of the Holy Spirit first occurred on the Day of Pentecost forming the unique spiritual body, the church (see Acts 1:5; 2:1-3).  Since then, everyone who trusts Jesus as Saviour is
baptized with the Holy Spirit and becomes a member of the body of Christ, the church.  This happens at the very moment a person is converted or saved (see Acts 11:15-16; I Corinthians 12:12-13).


          2. (vs. 34).  
In our final verse John the Baptist said “And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.”  John the Baptist here gave a statement summarizing that what he had seen convinced him that Jesus “is the Son of
God.
”  This description of Jesus as “the Son of God” does not mean that Jesus is less than the Father, because the title itself speaks of His deity.  As such, Jesus is the eternal living Word who created all things and is the source of all life and
light (see John 1:1-4).  He is the final revelation of what God is like (see John 1:18) and only He has direct knowledge of the Father (see John 6:46; 10:15).  It’s the Father’s will that the Son receive the same honor that He does (see John 5:
23).  
Note:  All three Members of the Trinity are equal in essence, but each One has certain roles in relationship to the other two.  Just as the Holy Spirit calls attention to Christ and glorifies Him (see John 14:26; 15:26;
16:13-14), Christ obeys and glorifies His Father (see John 5:30; 6:38; 17:4).  It should be noted that Jesus’ enemies understood completely that the phrase “Son of God” was a claim to be God and therefore they accused
Him of blasphemy and wanted to stone Him (see John 10:33-36).




V. Conclusion.  John the Baptist’s description of Jesus is a wonderful testimony of who He is and His work.  As the Lamb of God, He provided redemption for mankind.  As the One who baptizes with the Spirit he provides the foundation for
the Christian church.  And as the Son of God, Jesus deserves all faith, worship, and obedience.  Jesus came to earth as God’s Lamb to give His life for our sins so that we could become children in God’s family by faith in Him, and enjoy His
presence forever.

PRACTICAL POINTS:
1.  There is only One who is capable of taking away our sins and that is the Lamb of God (John 1:29).
2.  We don’t have to know everything about Christ before telling others what we already know is true (John 1:30-31; Mark 16:15).
3.  We know through the testimony of the Holy Spirit that Jesus is the Lamb sent from God (John 1:32-33).
4.  It’s a great privilege to know and declare that Jesus is the very Son of God (John 1:34).
Sunday, March 1, 2015
The Lamb of God

John 1:29-34
Golden Text: “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which
taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
Click Here to return to "The Ministry" page
Daily Bible Readings:
MONDAY
: The Spirit and Joseph - (Genesis 41:38–43)
TUESDAY
: The Spirit and Bezalel  - (Exodus 31:1–6)
WEDNESDAY
: The Spirit and the Elders  - (Numbers 11:11–25)
THURSDAY
: Would that All Had the Spirit! - (Numbers 11:26–30)
FRIDAY
: Make the Way Straight - (John 1:19–23)
SATURDAY
: Why Are You Baptizing? - (John 1:24–28)
SUNDAY
: I Saw the Spirit Descending - (John 1:29–34)
Search the Bible:


Examples: Psalm 27; John 15
love one another; Psalm 23

Say It Correctly
Nazarite. NA-ze-rite.
Bethabara. beth-ah-
BA-ra.
Esaias. eh-
SIGH-as