26 John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, 27 even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.”
We’ve read these words from John the Baptist time and time again. But, do we consider the depth of humility there? Do we grasp what John is saying about Christ and about himself? Does our modern view allow for the same humility?
John says that Jesus is so great, so perfect, so holy that John is not even worthy to untie his shoes. John is saying that he is unworthy to be Christ’s lowliest slave. He sees the perfection of Jesus in comparison to John’s own sinfulness, and he declares that he is simply not worthy even to serve Jesus.
Now, think of our self-esteem culture. Think of the fact that many preachers call people to make much of themselves, to think highly of themselves, to consider themselves to be extremely important. This view does not leave much room for the humility of John.
Christian, you are a treasure; but you are only a treasure because God gave you value. You are also a sinner. You did not earn anything from God. You and I are not worthy to be allowed to untie Jesus’ shoes. Yet Jesus, out of his love, chose to save us and make us part of his family. Think about yourself with humility. Consider how little you deserve the grace you have been given so that you can also see how wonderfully blessed you are to be in Christ. Our worth, which is very great, comes to us from the Savior whose servants we do not deserve to be.