Matthew 3:13-17 – Baptism of Jesus

Read Matthew 3:13-17

Each of the gospels has an account of Jesus’ baptism. Have you ever wondered why Jesus would need to be baptized? Wasn’t that for sinners who needed to repent? What had Jesus done? Even John was surprised and tried to talk him out of it.

Jesus is the perfect One. Note what he says, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires.” In other translations, it was to “fulfill all righteousness.” Jesus didn’t mean that baptism was necessary for salvation or that he needed to repent. The intent was more the readiness to follow the will of God. Jesus was saying he was ready to start his ministry and to do that he had to fully trust God the Father. He was also engaging in the practice of his people and connecting with them.

Jesus’ baptism was also approved by God. The trinity was present at Jesus’ baptism. We have Jesus. The voice of God. And the Spirit of God in the form of a dove. It was surely a holy moment, one to be remembered.

When we are baptized, we too experience the three persons of God. We are baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is our time to be cleansed and welcomed into God’s family. Have you been baptized? Do you remember your baptism or were you an infant?

In my Christian tradition, infant baptisms are quite common. I was a baby. My only memories are from the pictures. Likewise, my own children were baptized as babies. Again, pictures commemorate the event. There is something special about witnessing an adult baptism. They know what they are doing. It is a meaningful occasion.

As a teenager, I led a group of other teens in our own rendition of the musical, “Godspell.” We used the music but wrote our own script using the Book of Matthew. I’ll probably share some of those memories along the way as I reflect on this gospel. For example, the baptism of Jesus was a cool transformation, and I found a video of the original cast. You can WATCH IT HERE.

God, save the people!

Let’s pray. Lord, while I don’t remember my baptism, I know that you welcomed me with open arms in your family that day. I have been a child of God ever since. I celebrate my baptism today as I read about Jesus’ baptism. I commit myself again to following your will for me. Empower me for your purpose. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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