John the Baptist... what an amazing man. Although I would never want to live a life like his lifestyle, I admire his humble devotion and mission to God.
In John 1:19, John the Baptist declares his mission to us when priests and temple assistants come and question John on who he is. As leaders of the faith, that was their duty as guardians of the faith to investigate new teachings. If their motives were just that, they would be pure and biblical. However, we see throughout the Gospels that they are indeed selfish and full of jealousy. See, John the Baptist had a huge following. He was preparing the way for Jesus, getting hearts ready, preaching reconciliation that was to come through the coming Messiah. He baptized with water as a symbol of forgiveness and repentance while always pointing to the Savior that was coming to offer the people something so much more.
But here is what I love most about John. His humble heart. Back to the John 1:19 passage, when asked who he was, he simply replied with scripture from Isaiah 40:3 "I am a voice shouting in the wilderness, Clear the way for the Lord's coming." Then he follows up in 1:26, "... I'm not even worthy to be his slave and untie the straps of his sandals."
John the Baptist was a great prophet and recognized many times throughout the bible, Matthew 11:11, Luke 7:28 etc. But he sees himself as nothing compared to the Lord, not even worthy of a slaves position for Jesus Christ. His humbleness is a complete self-check for me. One of the greatest prophets of all times, declares himself unworthy in the presence of the Lord. He humbles himself completely in His honor. How much more should we lay aside our pride as we serve God. When we truly understand who Christ is, our pride should melt away. Our life becomes all about him and nothing about us. All about service and love and nothing of selfish desires.
It's a standard that is too holy for us to ever reach as sin is in this world and in our hearts. But it's a standard that we should always strive for as we grow in Christ. A life of humbleness to honor our Lord.
James 4:10 - Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.