Faithlife Sermons

John's Story, Jesus' Story & Our Story-

Matthew  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view

John's story is all about Jesus' story. Jesus' story is all about the Kingdom of God-the return from exile, the restoration of God's people and dawning of the new age (the resurrection age).

Notes
Transcript
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →

Introduction

I don’t know if you have noticed, but the world is a mess.
People are hopeless, hurting and reeling from the day to day grind in this broken world.
Medical Technology
Many who do not seem hopeless, have placed there hope in fleeting hopes which cannot ultimately satisfy and will not sustain them!
Mindfulness
… But God … God is doing something and God has done something in Jesus Christ!
Financial Success and Security
That’s the story of the Gospel, that’s the Story of God and what He has done and is doing to overcome the brokenness and emptiness of this world.
Accolades at Work
“What’s your story?”
Everyone has a story—a way in which they understand themselves and the circumstances of their life.
If you give 10 different writers the a set of 10 circumstances and ask each of them to write their own story about these circumstances, you will end up with 10 (probably totally) different stories.
A story isn’t merely the circumstances and reality of your life—it’s the way you understand and identify with the circumstances and realities of life.
Your story—in that sense—forges your identity.
In today’s text we’re going to see that Matthew wants us to know that John’s Story is all about Jesus. Jesus’ story is all about the Kingdom of God—the restoration of God’s people and the dawning of the new age (the age of resurrection).
Where does your story fit?
In our text we could talk about the steadfast convictions of John that led him to confront Herod. We could talk about the fear of man and its paralyzing affect on our lives. We could talk about the sinful nature of Herod’s court. We could talk about the insanity of rash vows and the detrimental nature of peer pressure. We could talk about all of these and more!
But all of these aspects of this story are there to point to the one John always pointed to … to Jesus. The the story of the Gospel of Jesus. To the good news of the now dawning Kingdom of God.
It’s never enough to talk about sin and the effects of sin—We must always talk about the answer to sin!
It is never enough to talk about convictions and hot confront sin—We must always talk about our Confession of Him who as over come sin!

John’s Story, Jesus’ Story & Our Story

Matthew 14:1–4 ESV
At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus, and he said to his servants, “This is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.” For Herod had seized John and bound him and put him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because John had been saying to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.”
Matthew 14:5–8 ESV
And though he wanted to put him to death, he feared the people, because they held him to be a prophet. But when Herod’s birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company and pleased Herod, so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter.”
Matthew 14:5-
Matthew 14:1–12 ESV
At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus, and he said to his servants, “This is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.” For Herod had seized John and bound him and put him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because John had been saying to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.” And though he wanted to put him to death, he feared the people, because they held him to be a prophet. But when Herod’s birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company and pleased Herod, so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter.” And the king was sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given. He sent and had John beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. And his disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.
Matthew 14:9–12 ESV
And the king was sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given. He sent and had John beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. And his disciples came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus.

John’s Story

John’s story is all about the story of Jesus.

John’s Life

Matthew 3:11–12 ESV
“I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
John’s life and ministry are intentionally meant to direct the focus and attention to Jesus.
John’s baptism points to a greater baptism.
John calls people to repentance, Jesus will gather His own to Himself by causing repentance within them.
John 3:28–30 ESV
You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, ‘I am not the Christ, but I have been sent before him.’ The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete. He must increase, but I must decrease.”
John’s life and ministry are intentionally meant to direct the focus and attention to Jesus.
John rejoices in the ministry of Jesus as the long-awaited Messianic King, who is worthy of all attention, affection and affiliation.
John wants the fame and following of Jesus to increase.

John’s Death

The circumstances of John’s death—like his life and ministry— are intentionally meant to direct the focus and attention to Jesus.
Fame—14:1
Confusion about Identity—14:2
John had a great deal of fame, Jesus has a great deal of fame.
Seized and Bound—14:3 (, )
Confusion about Identity
Matthew 26:50 ESV
Jesus said to him, “Friend, do what you came to do.” Then they came up and laid hands on Jesus and seized him.
Matthew 27:2 ESV
And they bound him and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate the governor.
A Prophet in Conflict with a Ruler—14:4
We will come into conflict with Jesus if we want to be the ultimate ruler of our worlds.
Dealing with People Gripped by the Fear of Man—14:5 (
Many people were confused about the identity of John; many people are confused about the identity of Jesus.
Matthew 27:24–26 ESV
So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves.” And all the people answered, “His blood be on us and on our children!” Then he released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.
Because of sin and brokenness, God’s prophets and His prophetic word are a stumbling block to many.
A Prophet in Conflict with a Ruler--
Seized and Bound
A Nagging Reluctance to Execute—14:9
John was seized and bound and delivered over to death; Jesus will be seized and bound and delivered over to death.
John was seized and bound and delivered over to death, Jesus will be seized and bound and delivered over to death.
Wives Playing a Part in the Story—14:3
Dealing with People Gripped by the Fear of Man
Shameful Deaths ()
Matthew 17:2 ESV
And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light.
Matthew 17:12 ESV
But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of Man will certainly suffer at their hands.”
A Prophet in Conflict with a Ruler
Burial by Disciple(s)—14:12
A Nagging Reluctance to Execute
Wives Playing a Part in the Story
Shameful Deaths
Burial by Disciple(s)
In all these ways, the circumstances of John’s death foreshadow the death of another prophet, a greater prophet.

Jesus’ Story

Resurrection?? John Burial…

The text leads to ask questions that can only ultimately be answered by Jesus’ story.
John’s story ends with his burial. And then … they tell Jesus.
Why tell Jesus?
Is Jesus going to raise John from the dead?
Will Jesus manage to escape the fate of John?
Is Jesus going to raise John from the dead?
Will Jesus do anything about this?
The concept of resurrection has come up with Herod, but John’s body is buried and that is the end of John’s story.
The greatest of the Old Testament prophets has his story ended like so many before him.
Has darkness triumphed?
Can a true prophet of the Lord affect true and lasting change?
Will God’s people ever be led out of the exile their sin has led them into?
Can Jesus do anything about these things?

Jesus’ Story

Resurrection!! Jesus’ Empty Tomb

John’s story ends with his death, but the Prophetic Story does not, it cannot end the same way.
The death of John—as the greatest of the Old Covenant Prophets—signals the end of the Old Covenant era.
Jesus’ Story is about the Kingdom of God. The dawning of God’s Kingdom was to be the dawning of a new age—the age of resurrection and restoration.
Ezekiel prophesied about a coming age of restoration and return from exile, where God would put His Spirit within HIs people.
This age was to be the age of resurrection. The age when the dead dry bones that was God’s people would receive resurrection life.
The time of restoration (gather you from the countries) and new life is the time of resurrection.
Ezekiel 36:24–28 ESV
I will take you from the nations and gather you from all the countries and bring you into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, and you shall be my people, and I will be your God.
,
Ezekiel 36:24–28 ESV
I will take you from the nations and gather you from all the countries and bring you into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, and you shall be my people, and I will be your God.
Ezekiel 37:3–6 ESV
And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.”
Ezekiel 37:3–4 ESV
And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.
Ezekiel 37:7–10 ESV
So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army.
Ezekiel 37:3–4 ESV
And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.
Jesus’ resurrection from the dead is the foundation for the age of resurrection, the new age, the age of the Kingdom.
Jesus’ Story is all about the Kingdom, the new age—this new age was the age of resurrection, when God’s people would be given His Spirit … for a purpose.
But it’s not only about His resurrection—it’s about the resurrection of all God’s people and the regeneration of the created universe.

Our Story

Resurrection Life in the Spirit

Acts 1:8 ESV
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
The age of the resurrection—of life in the Spirit—is the age where the life and ministry of the people of God are intentionally meant to direct the focus and attention to Jesus.
Church: There is one, and only one, story that gives meaning and purpose to all of our stories.
You can have new life, resurrection life.
We have an opportunity to partake in the greatest story of all time. We have an opportunity to live lives with real meaning and purpose.
You can have a life animated by the all powerful Spirit of the Living God.
There are a thousand different endeavors to engage upon, there are a thousand different things that we could give our life and affections to.
Ephesians 3:7–13 ESV
Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power. To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God, who created all things, so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.
You can have a life where everything you do is accomplished by the very life of God working within you.
1 Corinthians 7:29–35 ESV
This is what I mean, brothers: the appointed time has grown very short. From now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away. I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.
1 Corinthians 9:19–26 ESV
For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings. Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air.
Christian brothers and sisters—
Let your story be consumed in THE Story!
The world is a mess—you don’t believe me, watch the news.
And, yet, God is at work, restoring, changing lives. You don’t believe me, give your time to witnessing to people.
Let your story be consumed in THE Story!
You have resurrection life.
Let your life be consumed with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Your life is animated by the Spirit all the time—not part of the time, but all of the time.
Let your days be given to making the good news known.
Let heart rejoice in the manifest grace of God in gathering a people to Himself in Christ.
It is animated by the Spirit so that you can exist in this world as Jesus witness.
If the Spirit never leaves you—and He doesn’t leave you—then the purpose for which you have Him never changes.
You are to live with an intentional focus as Jesus witness:
At Work
At School
During Sports Seasons
At the Park with the Kids
At home with the family
In the privacy of your room when no one sees you
In the Department Store
This is not a burden! It is the God-ordained means by which we live in the power and grace of New Resurrection Life. It is the God ordained means by which the very life of Christ lives in us. It is the God ordained means by which we will find true satisfaction and joy.
Related Media
Related Sermons