Summary: EPIPHANY 1(A) - Jesus comes to be baptized to reveal the sinners’ Savior and to show sinners how to be saved.
JESUS COMES TO BE BAPTIZED
Matthew 3:13-17 - January 11, 2004
13Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14But John tried to deter him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?"
15Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Then John consented.
16As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. 17And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased."
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Dearest Fellow-Redeemed and Saints in the Lord:
There is a difference in the purpose of life that we live and the purpose of life with which Jesus lived. We are born into this world, and we live on this earth. Our earthly life is known as our time of grace. It is a time of grace because by grace God brings us to faith, and in His grace believers learn the importance of God’s love for them. During this time of grace every believer is given the opportunity to grow in the knowledge and salvation of our Lord. This is our purpose in life: to live learning more about salvation, praising God for His grace, and then finally seeing Him face to face.
When we look at the purpose of Jesus’ life, we discover that His ultimate purpose was that He was born to die. In the creation of the world and since the creation of the world, Jesus is the only one with that purpose. We are born to live, but we know that Jesus’ purpose really was to die, to die on the cross for the sins of the world. We also know that in between that time when Jesus was born and the time when He died on the cross and rose again from the dead, He did many other things. Jesus taught in synagogues and healed the sick and performed many miracles. In all of that time part of His purpose, as He looked at the ultimate purpose of sacrificing Himself on the cross, Jesus carried out His heavenly Father’s will.
As we look at His baptism today, we learn once again that Jesus is doing the will of His Father. The book of Hebrews tells us: "Then I said, ’Here I am--it is written about me in the scroll--I have come to do your will, O God’" (HEBREWS 10:7). As Jesus comes to be baptized, we see He wants to be baptized to do once again God’s will. God’s will is explained for us in our text.
Jesus comes to be baptized (all according to God’s will)
I. both to show that He is the sinners’ Savior,
II. and show how sinners are also to be saved.
I. Jesus comes to be baptized to show He is the sinner’s Savior
We will look at the second half of our text first and see the power and testimony that is given at the baptism of Jesus. We are told: 16As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. He had come to the Jordan River to John to be baptized by him. They went down into the river and Jesus was baptized. This is all we are told about His baptism. We are not told whether Jesus was immersed in the water, if He was sprinkled with water, or how He was baptized--only that He was baptized with water.
We see the further testimony that is given, because Jesus has come to be baptized: At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. We picture the heavens being opened. We can picture the Holy Spirit like a dove descending, and John saw this. The crowds that were there saw this. It was a testimony that Jesus was more than just the son of Mary and Joseph. Now, ff seeing that testimony was not enough, they also heard the testimony that was given from heaven itself: 17And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." Again, the crowd heard that voice, and John the Baptist heard that voice. They began to realize, because of the testimony that was given about this Jesus, that He was indeed the Messiah. This Jesus was more than just another prophet from Nazareth. Jesus looked like the people gathered in the crowd and talked like them. Jesus was been born like them, but He was also God’s Son. Jesus came to be the Savior of mankind. The crowd heard this when they witnessed Jesus’ baptism. Jesus came to be baptized in order to show that He was the sinners’ Savior.