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Jesus baptized

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Jesus Baptized

As John’s ministry reached its apex to the point where he had effectively laid the spiritual groundwork for Jesus. Jesus finished up His final contracts and projects as a carpenter.   When the last peg had been hammered in place, and the wood of His final project sanded and ready for its customer, the Holy Spirit whispered, “It’s time.” Taking off His carpenter’s apron, He set aside His tools for the last time.

Everything was set. He'd made provisions for the care of His mother, brothers and sisters. His brothers were all trained carpenters, capable of taking over the shop and running it for the families provisions. It was time to begin His Father's business so He set out on His journey down the Jordan River, to where John the Baptist was preaching.

 Why did Jesus come to John the Baptist to be baptized?

There seemed to be no prophecies that required Him to be baptized. He did not need to repent! So why did Jesus go to John the Baptist to be Baptized. I believe there were two reasons at least. First, John would bear witness that Jesus was the Messiah the Holy One, the Son of God. Second, to put it in military terms, it was a change of command. John's ministry was completed and would decrease, and Jesus' ministry would begin and increase. Let's take a look at the story.

It was a beautiful warm morning. John had finished preaching and as was his custom, he began to baptize the people who had been convicted by his sermon and had come forward to be baptized. It was his custom to question each person who came to be baptized to test his or her sincerity. He was so focused on the man he was about to baptize, that he took little notice the next man in line waiting to be baptized. As he brought the baptized man up out of the water John clapped him on the shoulder, smiled, and told him to go and seek God's will. Then he looked up to the next man in line and his heart leaped  seemed to freeze. in awe. In his heart and soul, John felt the Holy Spirit whisper, “This is Him, this is the Messiah!” His heart fluttered, his mouth opened and closed, but no words were coming out. His hands dropped to his sides into the water, and for the span of a few heartbeats he was completely dumbfounded, stunned to the point where he could only stammer, “you come to me? I need to be baptized by you!” His knees, on their own volition, beginning to bend in homage and respect for the man before him (Matt. 3: 13-17,Luke 3:14).

The stage was set.  John had fulfilled his mission and this was Jesus’ way of stepping onto the stage that had been prepared for Him. This may have been Jesus' way of telling John, “Well done good and faithful servant, I'll take it from here."

 As John began to kneel, Jesus grasped his shoulders and stopped him. 

John looked up in confusion and Jesus whispered, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” In a stunned daze, John straightened up and watched in amazement as Jesus bowed His head in prayer waiting to be baptized. John's heart raced in joy, excitement, and wonder as he placed his trembling hand behind Jesus’ head and gently lowered Him under the water. He'd waited his entire life to meet the messiah, and here he was baptizing him. As John brought Jesus out of the water, his eyes were drawn upward by the sound of fluttering wings. He was stunned to see the Holy Spirit in the form of a beautiful white dove descend from heaven and lighting on Jesus. Then chills raced up and down his spine and his heart began to pound like a drum when heard the voice of God rumble like thunder, “This is my Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.” This is the first time in recorded history that the trinity is mentioned to be in the same time at the same place, Jesus coming out of the water, the Holy Spirit coming down in the form of a dove, and God the father saying, “This is my Son in whom I am well pleased.” John was probably about to have a heart attack!

Filled with holy awe he looked into Jesus’ eyes and watched as a smile spread across His face. He stood frozen in place as Jesus clasped him briefly on the shoulder, then turned to wade out of the river to change the world.

 

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