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John the Baptist fulfilled the prophecy in the Old Testament that foretold one who would come before the Messiah and prepare the people for His arrival. The mission and vocation of John the Baptist is to be the predecessor of the Messiah. John the Baptist came to prepare people for the One who is coming of Jesus.

He called people to conversion and to change form their way of living; changing from their evil ways and sinful life to embrace the life of God and of righteousness. He was very famous and effective in his mission because of his preaching and teaching. Therefore, many John the Baptist got many followers and adepts. He even had disciples just as we know, Jesus had.

However, many thought that John himself was the Messiah. When they asked him if he was indeed the Messiah, he strongly denied it. John baptized Jesus and pointed Him and made Him known to people that He is really the Messiah whom God promised and whom they Israelites people were waiting for.

Even Jesus, in his first teaching, declared that John the Baptist was the greatest human being who ever lived because he pronounced the coming of Jesus Christ as the Messiah.

Moreover, as Jesus becomes known, more people follow Him than John the Baptist. Jesus became more famous with the people, they began to flock to Him.

This was common for some rabbis or other teachers who wanted to gain a public following. Jesus’ words and teachings carried great authority along with the signs and miracles He performed.

Many of John’s followers then began to follow Jesus directly after John had so publicly proclaimed that Jesus was the One he had spoken of. For example, Andrew, one of Jesus’ twelve disciples, left the ministry of John the Baptist and brought his brother Peter and his friends James and John to follow Jesus.

But this was not a problem for John the Baptist. It was rather a joy for him. John firmly placed Jesus at the forefront. And in the Gospel of today he told the people that Jesus must increase and he must decrease (Jn 3:30). This is the great humility of John.

What can we learn for this great humility of John Baptist?

One is acknowledge and know our own selves and our mission. John was very talented and very successful in his life and mission but he was very humble and felt unworthy even to untie Jesus sandals. So also should have such humility in our life realizing that we are human being, sinners and weak.

Two is to understand who really Jesus is. John knew very well and was convinced that Jesus is the true Messiah, the Son of God. Do we have enough conviction and knowledge about Jesus’ identity? We need to study and learn more about Him. The third lesson is to be convinced that all glory belongs to God. John was so glorified by people but he realized that glory does not belong to him, only to God. So he refers them all to God, the Honor of all glory. The same in our life, we should not be glory-thirsty people. We are just human being like many other. So why should we fight for glory from one another?


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