Today's verses are John 4:1-3: "Now when Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John (although Jesus himself did not baptize, but only his disciples), he left Judea and departed again for Galilee." My child, my goal from the beginning to the end of my earthly ministry was to make disciples. The word "disciple" means a pupil, a learner. I want to make all people into life-long learners and pupils who follow me. Honestly, it will take an eternity for you to know all there is about me. But that is my goal.
The first step in becoming a disciple is making a decision to follow me. That is how it all begins. Have you made that decision to follow me? Have you decided to yield your life to me and do all that I've commanded you to do?
Then the next step is to be baptized. Baptism is the outward sign of the inward reality of your heart having been forgiven and yielded to me. You go under the water to signify death to self. You die to self, as I died on the cross. Then you come out of the water to signify your new life in me. You rise to new life, as I rose to new life from the grave. Have you been baptized? It is an important public declaration of your decision to follow me.
My last words before I ascended to heaven were these: "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age" (Matthew 28:19,20). In the earliest days of my ministry, I and my followers made and baptized disciples. It is my same desire until I return.
Please note, my child, that I did not baptize people. My disciples did. That's because I did not want the attention. I didn't want people questing after me alone to baptize them. If I had I baptized, everyone would have wanted me to do it. I wanted my disciples to baptize and make disciples. It is my model for you, too. I want you to baptize and make disciples. That is my will for your life!
Finally, please see that I had to leave this area of the Jordan River and move northward because the Pharisees were becoming increasingly hostile toward me because of my popularity. My time had not yet come for my confrontation with them. There is a time for everything on earth. I am in control of all. Everything in your life's schedule, if you've totally yielded your life to me, is under my sovereign control too. I've not forgotten your requests of me. There is an appointed time for everything.
Make your decision to follow me. Be baptized. Be my disciple. Do all I've commanded you to do. All authority rests with me. I control all, especially your life. I know the desires of your heart. Believe this...
And trust me today.