Dr. Ronnie Wolfe
This text is only one small verse, but it is so powerful and applicable to us as well as to John the Baptist, who uttered it.
loved the Lord and served Him. He obeyed his call to baptize, though
that was a new thing to the Jewish community, especially the way John
was doing it. His ministry was powerful and successful, but he knew it
would be brief and passing; because he knew that Jesus would soon take
over the prominent scene in the history of redemption. Therefore, he
said, "He must increase."
Jesus was born a helpless baby, a human being, a kinsman redeemer. He grew daily in favor with God and man: Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.
He grew to be a man at twelve years old and discussed technical
theology with the superiors in the temple, knowing he must be about His
Father's business (Luke 2:49).
He grew to maturity in the flesh
and remained in His spirit the same God that He was before the
foundation of the world, the Great I Am, the image of the invisible God,
the creator of heaven and earth (Col.1:15-16).
But John said, "I
must decrease." To know that Jesus is the Great Shepherd is not a hard
thing, but to know that man must decrease in order for Jesus to increase
is quite another thing. Man is basically a selfish being, and he in
general does not want to be ordered by others; but, if Jesus is to act
as Lord in our lives, we must first humble ourselves before Him and
summit ourselves to him as John did.
John was soon arrested and
killed, but Jesus began to increase in popularity and at the same time
in persecution and eventually died the death of the cross (Phil. 2:8),
being humbled and obedient to His work of Redeemer. He increased by
being victorious over the cross, over death, over hell, and
over our sins. Then He sat down at the right hand of His Father, being
worthy of that position (Mark 16:19; Acts 7:55-56; Rom. 8:34; Col. 3:1;
Heb. 1:3; 10:12; 1 Peter 3:22;).
We also must decrease and be humbled in order that we may be exalted in His service: Matthew 23:12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.