Praying through the Psalms

Praying through the Psalms

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Do The Right Thjng!!

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?”15 Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.

I don't know if you have ever been asked to do something and your response was, "Why me?" It is usually in these situations, where we are being called to do something bigger than ourselves.

One can only imagine how John felt when Jesus came to him to be baptized. When John saw Jesus for the first time he said, "Behold the sinless Lamb of God, who came to take away the sins of the world. Sinful John is asked by sinless Jesus to baptize him. There are many possibilities for why Jesus asked to be baptized by John, but we know that one of them was not for the forgiveness of his sins. Simply put if Jesus had any sin, he would have had to die for his own sin on the cross, not ours.

So why did Jesus ask John to baptize him? It is usually best to stick with what the bible says and interpret it in its proper context. Jesus says, "it is proper for us to do so to fulfill all righteousness". We might say, "it was the right thing to do". Why was it the right thing to do? Because it was a fulfillment of what baptism was meant to be. In the Old Testament, baptism was used for those converted to Judaism. The water was a symbol of cleansing so a Gentile could enter the Jewish community.

The context is John baptizing people in the Jordan as a sign of repentance. But Jesus would come and baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire, a sign of judgment. In Matthew, Jesus fulfills the Old Testament prophecy from Ezekiel 36:25-26. "I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh."

So Jesus was baptized because it was the right thing to do, it was a fulfillment of the meaning of baptism, which is both of water for cleansing and the filling of the Spirit. And we see that literally happening as the Holy Spirit descends upon him like a dove and this is the beginning of His public ministry.

This story teaches us that we never know who God is going to use in our lives. In humility, we need to give and receive God's grace and Spirit from those God sends in to our lives. It also teaches us to be obedient even we don't completely understand why. In obedience we do the "right thing", and God will empower us with His Spirit. He will give us a new heart and a new Spirit to do that which is much bigger than us.

Where is God calling you to do the "right thing", even you may not know why he is asking you to do it?

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