January 14, 2019

January 14, 2019


Baptism of Our Lord + Matthew 3:13-17


Jesus came to the Jordan River, to John, to be baptized by him.

Jesus came to John, who preached repentance, turning away from evil.

Jesus came to John, who preached the need to repent, returning to the Lord our God.

Jesus came to John, who preached the need to realize our sin and get rid of it, remove it.

Jesus came to John, who preached the Ten Commandments, loving God above all things and loving your neighbor as you love yourself.

It is no surprise then that John objected, saying to Jesus, “I need to be baptized by you, and you come to me?”

John needed to be baptized by Jesus. John realized his sin and knew that it needed to be removed from him.

John knew that Jesus was the Son of God, and there was no sin in Him.

John needed to be saved by Jesus, he knew that Jesus was the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus did not need to be saved.
John knew that Jesus had come down from heaven, sent by God the Father, not to condemn the world in its sin but to save the world from its sin.

Whoever believes in Jesus as true God, begotten of the Father, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary, that He would die on the cross and rise again from the dead, to purchase and win them from sin, from death, and from the power of the devil, will be saved.

That is why Jesus came to be baptized, He wanted and needed to fulfill all righteousness.

Jesus came to be baptized by John, because by His holy precious blood shed on the cross, and by His innocent, bitter sufferings and death fulfilled all righteousness.

Those who listened to John’s preaching, realized their sin, repented and were baptized, placed their sin into the water of the Jordan River and came out of the water a new man.

Those who repented and were baptized, believed that Jesus, by His innocent, bitter suffering and death on the cross on Good Friday, would come to forgive them of their sins.

And in that belief, having that faith and trust in Jesus, they departed John and the Jordan River, living before God and man in righteousness and purity all the days of their life.

And that is why Jesus had to come and be baptized. Those who repented and were baptized, left their sins in the water of the Jordan River; and when Jesus was baptized, He took those sins which had been placed there and made them His own. Jesus then came out of the Jordan River and carried those sins, which were not His, to the cross, to suffer and die for them. That fulfills all righteousness.

Jesus came to fulfill all righteousness, that is He came to keep the Law of God perfectly, which God the Father demands of all of us.

Jesus willingingly took our sins and the sins of the whole world and died for them. He made our sins His sins. That fulfilled all righteousness.

Jesus paid the price that was owed for the sins of the world. Jesus paid the price for what Adam and Eve had done in the Garden of Eden, by rejecting the commands and promises of God.

Jesus came to fulfill all righteousness, that is, He did exactly what His heavenly Father wanted Him to do, to save sinners, of whom each one of us are chief of sinners.

Jesus’ holiness is our holiness. Jesus’ perfection is our perfection. Jesus’ goodness is our goodness.

Jesus, the Son of God, came down from heaven to give us what we needed; He gave us Himself. Jesus came to do what we could not do for ourselves.

That is why, after Jesus had been baptized by John, the heavens opened, the Holy Spirit, in the bodily form of a dove, came down from heaven and rested on His shoulder, and the Father in heaven spoke, “This is My beloved Son, with Him I am well pleased.

Jesus saves us by His bitter, suffering and death, that we would be His own, living under Him in His kingdom, in innocence and blessedness all the days of our life. It is in this work, of His Son, that God the Father is well pleased.

Jesus is the once and for all perfect sacrifice, whose blood sets us free to be people of God, heirs of heaven, recipients of the promise of God. It is in this work, of His Son, that God the Father is well pleased.

He is with us and we are with Him, He never leaves us or forgets about us.

He is our God and we are His people, we will be where He is forever.

His goodness and mercy will follow us all the days of our life and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

The forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting are ours. These are the promises of God for us; in this we place our hope and trust. We are saved and strengthened by our faith in these truths and gifts of God.

Those who believe and are baptized, give God alone all thanks, praise, service and obedience.

Those who believe and are baptized, boast not in themselves but in the Lord. He is our help and our strength. He will guide and comfort us.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate our Lord Jesus’ baptism, give thanks and praise that you too believe and are baptized.

Give thanks that water and the Word of God has been applied to you and that your name is written, by the finger of God, in the Book of Life.

Remember what took place at your baptism: the devil and all his works and all his ways were renounced and removed from you, the Holy Spirit entered into you, and you became God’s holy temple.

Today and everyday, renew your baptismal vows, remembering whose you are and who you are.

God is your Father and with Jesus, you are His son. Together, you are members of the family of God.

He is your Good Shepherd and you are His sheep, ever restoring your body and soul.

Remember that God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit removed you from the world and all its darkness and evil and that you are not to have any part in them.

You have received the light of Christ, ever walking in it. Walk in the light of Christ, the light no darkness can overcome.

Remember that you are dressed in the white robe of Christ’s righteousness, the holiness of God is yours. You are washed in the blood of Jesus, your sins are as white as snow.

Be ever watchful and in prayer that God would keep you always in a state of grace, that there would be no fear or doubt, even at the hour of your death.

Pray, that by the power of the Holy Spirit, you would live according to the holy will and desire of God, doing all things to His glory.

Entrust yourself completely to God the Father’s care, for He cares for you. You are not in want, He opens His hands and you are richly blessed. He says to you as He said to Jesus, “You are My beloved son, with you I am well pleased.” Amen.