Humble Hero


The Baptism of Jesus

This chapter is based on Matthew 3:13-17; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21, 22.

The message of John the Baptist reached the poor people in the remote hill towns and the fishermen by the sea, and in these simple, earnest hearts, it found its greatest response. In Nazareth, it was told in the carpentry shop that had been Joseph’s, and One recognized the call. His time had come. He said Goodbye to His mother and followed the crowds that were flocking to the Jordan. HH 42.1

Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins, yet they had had no direct acquaintance with each other. This was part of God’s plan. No one would be able to say that they had conspired together to support each other’s claims. HH 42.2

John knew about the events that had marked the birth of Jesus and also about the visit to Jerusalem in His boyhood and His sinless life. He believed Him to be the Messiah, but the fact that Jesus had remained in the shadows, giving no special evidence of His mission, gave John opportunity for doubt. The Baptist, however, waited in faith. God had revealed to him that the Messiah would seek baptism from him and that he would receive a sign of His divine character. HH 42.3

When Jesus came to be baptized, John recognized in Him a purity of character that no one had ever before seen in anyone. His very presence was awe-inspiring. This was in harmony with what had been revealed to John about the Messiah. Yet how could he, a sinner, baptize the Sinless One? Why should He who needed no repentance submit to a rite that was a confession of guilt that must be washed away? HH 42.4

As Jesus asked for baptism, John hesitated, saying, “‘I have need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?’ But Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he allowed Him. ... When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.” HH 42.5