Jesus was a real person who came from a real place called Nazareth in the province of Galilee. He was baptized in a real river, the Jordan. In other words, Jesus' story is more than a story; it is history. Yet more than just history, it is God's saving history. A special part of that history is Jesus' baptism. His baptism is important for a number of reasons:
- It is a signal of the beginning of Jesus' ministry.
- It is an opportunity for God to affirm his Son, as we will see in subsequent verses.
- It is a way for Jesus to identify with people seeking to be ready for the coming of the Messiah and the Kingdom of God.
- It is a way for Jesus "to fulfill all righteousness" (Matthew 3:13-15 NIV).
- For us, however, there is another great truth about Jesus' baptism: It is something we can join him in doing if we truly turn our lives toward God as those who came to John did.
God's saving history demonstrated in Jesus can intersect our lives. What a blessing of grace!
Father in heaven, thank you for offering me the opportunity to share in the life of Jesus. Help me know your will more fully as I study Jesus' life in the Gospel of Mark. Thank you for letting my life intersect the life of your Son through baptism. Dear Father, please conform me to the character of your Son through the Holy Spirit. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.