What Jesus Did! 'To Fulfill God's Plan' — Matthew 3:15

Monday, January 23, 2017

Jesus answered, "Let it be this way for now. We should do all things that are right." So John agreed to baptize Jesus.
— Matthew 3:15
Illustration of Matthew 3:15 — Jesus answered, "Let it be this way for now. We should do all things that are right." So John agreed to baptize Jesus.

Key Thought

Sometimes I am both amazed and ashamed at my audacity before the Sovereign God. I can actually (maybe better described, "arrogantly") think I have a better plan for my life than what I find in God's revealed will in Scripture. Now, I never intentionally think, "God is wrong about this; I have a better way to do it." No, my self-delusion is more sinister and subtle. I just ignore what he has revealed, and say something like, "Surely he doesn't mean..." or "Surely God wouldn't want..." However, any time I replace God's will with my own ideas, I've actually chosen my will over his.

John was a humble and true servant. But, John's conception of the Messiah didn't include baptizing him! God's plan, on the other hand, used John, just like he will use us. We need to ask this question everyday if we are to understand that will: "Father, how can I fulfill your desires and honor your character with my life today?" Our goal must be to please and to honor him by the way we live. We're here to fulfill his righteous plans, not what we think is best or most appropriate.

Today's Prayer

Gracious and all wise heavenly Father, thank you for having John baptize Jesus. This reminds me that baptism is about my relationship with you and not about who baptizes whom. Thank you for Jesus' example of living only to please you and accomplish your will. Please fill my heart with that same resolve and empower it by that same Spirit. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

At that time John the Baptizer came and began telling people a message {from God}. This was in the desert area of Judea. John said, "Change your hearts and lives, because the kingdom of heaven is coming soon." John the Baptizer is the one that Isaiah the prophet was talking about. Isaiah said: "There is a person shouting in the desert: 'Prepare the way for the Lord. Make his paths straight.'" John's clothes were made from camel's hair. John had a leather belt around his waist. For food, John ate locusts and wild honey. People went to hear John. The people came from Jerusalem and all Judea and all the area around the Jordan River. People told the sins they had done, and John baptized them in the Jordan River. Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to the place where John was baptizing people. When John saw them he said to them: "You are all snakes! Who warned you to run away from God's anger that is coming? You must do the things that show that you have really changed your hearts and lives. And don't think that you can boast and say to yourselves, 'Abraham is our father.' I tell you that God could make children for Abraham from these rocks here. The ax is now ready to cut down the trees. Every tree that does not make good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. "I baptize you with water to show that you changed your hearts and lives. But there is a person coming later that is greater than I am. I am not good enough to take off his shoes for him. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. He will come ready to clean the grain. He will separate the good grain from the straw. He will put the good part of the grain into his barn. And he will burn the part that is not good. He will burn it with a fire that cannot be stopped." At that time Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan River. Jesus came to John and wanted John to baptize him. But John tried to say that he was not good enough to baptize Jesus. John said, "Why do you come to me to be baptized? Ishould be baptized by you!" Jesus answered, "Let it be this way for now. We should do all things that are right." So John agreed to baptize Jesus. Jesus was baptized and he came up out of the water. The sky opened, and he saw God's Spirit coming down on him like a dove. And a voice spoke from heaven. The voice said, "This (Jesus) is my Son and I love him. I am very pleased with him."

Matthew 3:1-17

Related Scripture Readings

There is a way that people think is right. But that way leads only to death. A person who tells the truth helps other people. The person who tells lies hurts other people.

Proverbs 14:12; 16:25

"Continue to ask, and God will give to you. Continue to search, and you will find. Continue to knock, and the door will open for you. Yes, if a person continues asking, that person will receive. If a person continues looking, that person will find. And if a person continues knocking, the door will open for that person.

Matthew 7:7-8

"Not every person that says that I am his Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven. The only people that will enter the kingdom of heaven are those people that do the things that my Father in heaven wants. On the last day many people will say to me, 'You are our Lord! We spoke for you. And for you we forced out demons and did many miracles. ' Then I will tell those people clearly, 'Go away from me, you people that do wrong. I never knew you.'

Matthew 7:21-23

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.