“Jesus answered and said to John, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’”
The baptism of Jesus was a critical event in His life and ministry. It becomes a great illustration for us, of Christian living and service. First off, note that Jesus was baptized to fulfill righteousness. Water baptism is a picture of a spiritual baptism, which happens the moment a person believes in Christ.
Paul wrote, “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body…” 1Corinthians 12:13
While water baptism is not a requirement for salvation, it is a requirement for obedience. We are commanded, upon receiving Christ, to make it public with baptism. Jesus, to illustrate the value of this public declaration, submitted Himself to the rite of baptism. Second, note what happened upon His baptism; the Holy Spirit descended upon Him. This is a picture of a second baptism that the Bible speaks of; not when we are submerged in water, but in the Holy Spirit. I find it of the highest importance, that before Jesus began public ministry, He was baptized with the Holy Spirit. Jesus promised, any who asked would receive the Holy Spirit, and along with the outpouring of the Spirit, would be power to walk with Christ. Take time right now to ask God to baptize you with the Holy Spirit, and empower you to live for Christ and serve Him. Finally, note that Jesus heard the voice of God. One thing abundantly clear in Scripture is that God honors obedience. I believe whenever we take steps of obedience in our lives, we will hear the voice of God clearer. Whatever He is asking of you, do it, and His voice will become louder and clearer to you.
Questions for Chapter 3
- What message did John give to the people?
- What was the purpose of John’s ministry?
- In what way should our lives be like that of John the Baptist?
- When the people were baptized what did they confess?
- Are there any sins you need to confess this morning?
- What baptism does John promise Jesus will bring?
- Ask Jesus to baptize you this morning with the Holy Spirit.
- Have you been baptized in water? If not, contact the church about the next baptism.