Day 3 - The Baptism of Jesus

Day 3 - The Baptism of Jesus

Matthew 3: 13-17
13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?”
15 Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.
16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”

In this passage, Jesus has come to the Jordan River in order to be baptized by John the Baptist. John  protests that Jesus should baptize him instead. Imagine being John and being asked to baptize the Savior! John knew he was the one who needed to be baptized! John’s was the reaction of a sinner in the presence of the Holy God.

This event is considered the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. At this time, Jesus convinces John to baptize Him since it must be done in order to “fulfill all righteousness”. This little phrase has huge implications as it refers to all of God’s plan to reconcile His lost creation (us) to Himself. Jesus demonstrates His willingness to humble himself and to comply fully with His Father’s plan. He displays His total obedience. It began with His baptism but will end on the cross and an empty tomb.

In verses 16-17, we see all three aspects of the Trinity as the heavens open up. The Father confirms Jesus as HIs Son, the Son is the mediator who will allow us to go to heaven to be with the Father, and the Spirit descends on Jesus. The Spirit descending is a picture of what happens to each of us when we believe; we are given the Holy Spirit to help us in our walk. This does not happen when we are baptized though; it occurs at the moment of salvation.

This passage gives us the gospel. As Matthew Henry states, “Out of Christ, God is a consuming fire, but in Christ a reconciled Father.” Without Christ, we are separated from God and cannot do anything to redeem ourselves. Christ lived a sinless life in obedience to His Father that culminated in his death and resurrection which enabled us to be reconciled to God. It opened the heavens for us just as the heavens were opened on the day of Jesus’ baptism. That is the beginning of the story of Easter and why we celebrate.

If you have not accepted Christ as your savior, that is your next step. If you have accepted Christ but not experienced believer’s baptism, prayerfully consider being baptized. Baptism does not save, but it is an important event that publicly demonstrates your desire to follow Christ. He was baptized as an example to us. If Christ chose to be baptized, shouldn’t His followers be also? Baptized believers should pray for more humility as Christ humbled Himself in order to fulfill the will of His Father.

Lord. I thank you for the scriptures that clearly show us the humility and obedience of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Thank You for sending Your Son and for His total obedience to Your plan which enables us to be reconciled to You. I pray that You will search my heart just now and impress upon me any area of my life that I have not surrendered to You. I desire to be more humble and more obedient so that I might become more like Christ. Amen