You may be surprised to learn that Jesus had a favorite preacher. You may be even more surprised to learn that Jesus’ favorite preacher was not a Lutheran, Methodist, Pentecostal, Anglican, or Presbyterian. Rather, he was a Baptist! We know him as John the Baptist, of course! Jesus said of him,
Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist (Matt. 11:11a).
Since all people are “born of woman,” this was another way of saying that, in Jesus’ estimation, John the Baptist was the greatest person who had ever lived. Why Jesus felt that way was is a matter of conjecture. It seems reasonable to think, however, that Jesus thought highly of John because of John’s spiritual qualities. If so, we would certainly be wise to study and imitate those spiritual qualities. I’ve found at least seven spiritual qualities in John the Baptist that are praiseworthy. Although John’s ministry best represents the ministry of an evangelist, all seven spiritual qualities are appropriate for any and every minister of the gospel. Let’s consider the first of seven.