by Robert Dawson

A Message of Warning and Hope
Robert Dawson
Matthew 3:1-17

Have you ever noticed that when company is coming over, especially someone new that has never been to your home before that you suddenly feel an immediate and compulsive urge to clean and straighten? When we know guests are coming we all have certain routines and rituals we go through. We prepare our home, family and ourselves.

Even here at the church, when we plan big events, have guest preachers or groups come there are certain preparations that need to made. When someone comes to preach a revival there are certain preparations that take place. It involves a little more than just putting some dates down on the calendar.

There are things we need to do, arrangements to be made.
- We have to think about places to stay, making reservations, meals, travel, expenses and whatever else is needed to make their stay as comfortable as enjoyable as possible. We don't want them to leave thinking, ''what an ungracious, unwelcoming, ill-prepared and apathetic people.''
- We have to promote the revival. The worship team and choir spend weeks working on the music.
- There are spiritual preparations we strive to make. We spend time preparing our hearts in prayer. The preacher prepares his heart and spends time with God. He crafts the messages.
- Then when the first day of revival comes we don't just point to the pulpit and turn him loose. We take the time to introduce him to the church.

All of that preparation is important. It lays needed groundwork for what we believe God wants to do in the lives of our people and the life of this faith family.

As we continue to look at Jesus' life we see Jesus entering his public ministry we see God preparing the stage for His Son's public ministry to begin. He is not going to allow Jesus to begin His ministry without proper preparations and introductions being made.

God gives that privilege to a man we know as John the Baptist. It was his job to prepare th ...

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