New Beginnings

13 Then Jesus arrived from Galilee at the Jordan coming to John, to be baptized by him. 14 But John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I have need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?” 15 But Jesus answering said to him, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he permitted Him. 16 After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him, 17 and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” Matthew 3:13-17

16 But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated. 17 When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some were doubtful. 18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:16-20

It’s interesting and instructive to recognize the similarities between the launching of Jesus’ ministry, and the commissioning of ours. He made disciples, and that’s also our mission. He set the pattern for water baptism, and we are to go forth baptizing the disciples we’ve made. The Father and Holy Spirit were present at Jesus’ baptism, and we are to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Perhaps most important, Jesus and John were both obedient to fulfill “all righteousness” in what they were doing (despite John’s mild protests), and “believer’s baptism” is undergone in obedient response to an ordinance of the faith following salvation.

Jesus was already the Son of God before he went under, and we are already saved when we stir the waters. But we do it, as Jesus did, to outwardly pledge our allegiance to the Father, and He is well pleased.

About Rick Reynolds

You'll find me in the far right hand corner of evangelical Christianity. Been studying the Word for nearly 45 years and counting.
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