Jesus, Prototype Son
Lord, You are mighty and strong. Today, lead me deeper into the strength that never fails as I walk with You.
Read Mark 1:9-13
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“Hence the baptism of Jesus points to the fact that the only love which can ever possess redeeming power is a love that goes all the way and identifies itself with others” (James S. Stewart).
Baptism has often been a subject of controversy among Christians. But we won’t go wrong if we see Jesus’ baptism as the model and prototype of our own, remembering that Jesus is the “pioneer” of our salvation (Heb. 2:10) and that as Messiah he embodies and represents his people. We are “baptized into Christ,” and what is true of him is true of those who are in him (Gal. 3:27).
Jesus was baptized as an act of obedience. John’s baptism, we recall, was a baptism of repentance. Jesus had no sins to repent of, but he could still turn to his Father and commit himself afresh to do his will. Turning from sin and turning to Christ in obedience should still find expression in our baptism. Jesus’ baptism was followed by a moment of empowering. In Peter’s summary of the gospel story, “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power,” as a result of which, “he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him” (Acts 10:38). Those who commit themselves to do God’s will are not left without the strength to carry it out. Jesus’ baptism was followed by a word of assurance, and what God said to Jesus he says to us. He is the Son of God by nature and we are the children of God by adoption, but God still says to each of us, “You are my own dear child and I am pleased with you.”
It has often been noted that God’s word to Jesus echoes what he says to the Suffering Servant in Isaiah (Isa. 42:1) so it is no surprise to find that from the time of his baptism Jesus finds himself pitched into conflict with the power of evil.
Remember what God said to you and what you said to God (or what was said on your behalf) at your baptism. Which do you need to remember?
Thank You, Lord, for the gift of Your Spirit and Your ministering “angels” who help me battle the “wild beasts” of temptation.
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