Summary: John 3:16 is known to all. Other 3:16 passages in the New Testament teach us important things about Jesus as well. This is Luke 3:16

(based on a sermon series by Tom Ellsworth)

SERIES: “DISCOVER JESUS: The Other 3:16’s”

TEXT: LUKE 3:15-18


OPEN: A Last week we began a new series: “Discovering Jesus: The Other 3:16’s”

1. We said that most of us know John 3:16 quite well

--That passage teaches us about what God was accomplishing through His Son

2. But there are other 3:16 passages in the New Testament that teach us important things about


B. Back in 1990’s President of the United States Bill Clinton came to Louisville and spoke at Male

High School. Joe Berks, principal at the school, was asked how much advanced preparation was

involved in the president’s visit. He said it was incredibly huge.

There were three groups that came early, and each had five or six in their group. The three

groups were the Secret Service, a group preparing for the media, and another group in charge of


The programming people insisted on removing one hundred chairs at the front of the auditorium

in the high school, and they built a special platform for the president that was only used about

twenty-five minutes. They flew in the president’s own six hundred pound podium. It had a bullet

proof glass front and a heavy metal casing that would withstand a bomb blast. Then dogs came in

and sniffed every corner, every chair and even every sandwich that had been prepared for the local

politicians who came in and gobbled them up…feeling so privileged not knowing that dogs had

been slobbering on them earlier. The president’s own chef was flown in and he fixed a sandwich

and tea for his boss. Kroger’s, the grocery store chain, had donated flowers that lined the entire

stage, but an angry advance man reminded them that the president had serious allergy problems, so

they took an hour and a half to snip off every bloom and bud and cart them away.

As it got closer to the president’s arrival, the advance people came in droves until eight adjacent

rooms were filled with the president’s entourage. By the time the president arrived there were

trucks with satellite dishes outside, two helicopters, five limousines and a number of snipers on the

roof of the school and several in the cemetery that was close by. Joe Berks, the principal, said, “It

was a zoo. I’m glad we did it, but I’d never want to do it again.”

C. When Jesus Christ came to earth there was only one advance man.

1. It was the task of John the Baptist to prepare the way for the coming of the Son of God and then

to get out of the way.

2. He did his job perfectly—even though, apparently, his ministry lasted only about a year before

he was beheaded.

--Today we will look at some very important words from John the Baptist about Jesus.

3. Luke 3:15-18 – “The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if

John might possibly be the Christ. John answered them all, ‘I baptize you with water. But one

more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will

baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand to clear his

threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but he will burn up the chaff with

unquenchable fire. And with many other words John exhorted the people and preached the good

news to them.”


--Lk. 3:16 – “John answered them all, ‘I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come,

the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with


A. To understand the power of Jesus in context to what John is saying, we need to compare the lives and

ministries of John and Jesus

1. Both John and Jesus had their birth announced by an angel

a. However, John’s birth was simply to a couple that had been barren for some time and were slightly

advanced in age but were praying for a child

b. Jesus’ birth was completely miraculous

--born to a virgin impregnated by the Holy Spirit

2. John and Jesus taught baptism

a. John’s baptism was an incomplete baptism

1). Much like the animal sacrifices

--the imperfect had to do until the perfect came

2). Baptism in Jesus’ name was complete

--John’s baptism was to show repentance. Baptism in Jesus’ name brought remission of sins

b. John described the difference in that he just baptized with water

--Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire

1). We’re told that when we submit to Christ and are baptized, we receive not only forgiveness of

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