He that is mightier than I (o iscurotero mou). Like Mark 1:7 , "the one mightier than I." Ablative case (mou) of comparison. John would not turn aside for the flattery of the crowd. He was able to take his own measure in comparison with the Messiah and was loyal to him (see my John the Loyal). Compare Luke 3:16 with Mark 1:7 and Matthew 3:11 for discussion of details. Luke has "fire" here after "baptize with the Holy Ghost" as Matthew 3:11 , which see. This bold Messianic picture in the Synoptic Gospels shows that John saw the Messiah's coming as a judgment upon the world like fire and the fan of the thrashing-floor, and with unquenchable fire for the chaff ( Luke 3:17 ; Matthew 3:12 ). But he had the spiritual conception also, the baptism in the Holy Spirit which will characterize the Messiah's Mission and so will far transcend the water baptism which marked the ministry of John.