Surprised By Jesus!
Lord Jesus, You are the source of truth and the Lord of life. I acknowledge You are Lord of my life today and every day.
Read MATTHEW 3:13-17
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.
“Jesus…being in very nature God…made himself nothing…being made in human likeness” (Phil. 2:5-7). It’s a wonderful, marvelous mystery.
Jesus is the King! He’s the Creator and Ruler of the universe (John 1:1-3). He’s the great Judge (John 5:30). John recognized who Jesus was (14) and so tried to deter him from being baptized because this was the person who would do all John spoke of in vs. 11 and 12. Baptism is for those who have repented, and Jesus doesn’t need to repent! So why does Jesus ask John to baptize him?
Verse 15 gives Jesus’ reason. But how is “all righteousness” being fulfilled in this way? Perhaps a key aspect here is that of Jesus humbly classifying himself with his people, by taking their place, and identifying with their need for cleansing. Perhaps “righteousness” here also refers to that quality of life that those being baptized were to demonstrate, which John himself lived and demanded of his followers. Jesus was recognizing God’s claim on him, as on his followers, for obedience and holiness. Moreover, John is here publicly announcing the arrival of the Messiah and the start of his ministry. This was a profound anticipation of his “baptism” on the cross (Mark 10:38). Here is a symbolic demonstration of what will be Jesus’ experience.
How will this bring about what John was expecting: judgment and restoration for God’s people? Perhaps Matthew would say, “Read the rest of my Gospel to find out!” As Jesus comes out of the water, receives God’s Spirit in a new way, and is called God’s Son who brings the Father great joy, maybe he is saying that his judgment is through the making of peace by suffering on the cross. This may not be what Jews of the first century expected, but Jesus often acts in ways which are unexpected and surprising.
How can you learn anew to be surprised by Jesus and his attitudes: humble, peaceful, obedient, dependent on God? How can you adopt them?
Lord, You showed us what true life is like. Help me to have Your attitudes as my own.
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