Summary: A study on the importance of this event in the life of Christ
Larry C. Brincefield
Wed. Evening, 1/15/03
Title: Events from Jesus Life: Baptism
Text: Matthew 3:13-17
1. We have established Christ 1st as our vision for 2003.
A. If we put Christ 1st in our lives...
B. in our families
C. and in our church
D. then 2003 will be a banner year!!
2. On these Wednesday Evenings, we have been studying different events from the life of Christ.
A. Last week, we talked about Jesus as a young boy in the Temple.
B. 18 years have passed by uneventfully.
C. Jesus had faithfully performed his duties
i. as a carpenter
ii. and as a Son....
D. And now, it it time for Jesus to begin His public ministry...
E. so He goes to John to be baptized.
F. Let’s read about it in our text.
3. Read text: Matthew 3:13-17
4. These 5 verses;
A. although very short in terms of length,
B. have a great importance for us to learn more about the life of Christ.
1. First of all, Jesus went out of His way to come to be baptized
A. Matthew 3:13 says, "Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John"
i. Jesus was about 30 years old....
ii. John was about 6 months older.
iii. Jesus had spent 18 years working and serving at home
iv. And suddenly, he makes quite a journey from Galilee to the Jordan River.
v. As the crow flies, that could have meant anywhere from a 30-60 mile journey.
vi. And that was in the days before automobiles...
vii. most people walked everywhere they went.
B. Another interesting tidbit,
i. Jews didn’t get baptized.
ii. Barclay says, "never in all history before this had any Jew submitted to being baptized. The Jews ... used baptism, but only for proselytes who came into Judaism from some other faith. It was natural that the sin-stained, polluted proselyte should be baptized, but no Jew had ever conceived that he, a member of the chosen people, a son of Abraham, assured of God’s salvation, could ever need baptism. Baptism was for sinners, and no Jew ever conceived of himself as a sinner shut out from God. Now for the first time in their national history the Jews realized their own sin and their own ... need of God. —Barclay’s Daily Study Bible (NT)
iii. John knew it didn’t seem right for him to baptize Jesus,
a. it was only when Jesus insisted that John consented.
C. Since Jesus went out of His way to be baptized;
i. obviously there were reasons that He did that.
ii. Jesus had a purpose in going to John to be baptized.
iii. Jesus was identifying Himself with John and his message.
iv. John was preaching a message of repentance...
v. and a message about the coming Messiah....
vi. and Jesus was the fulfillment of that message.
2. The baptism of Jesus has 4 special meanings for us.
A. First of all, Jesus said, "it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Matt 3:15 (NIV)
i. The baptism of Jesus showed that He was consecrated to God...
ii. and that God approved of His ministry by the Presence of the Holy Spirit.
B. The second meaning is that Jesus’ baptism served to publicly announce the arrival of the Messiah and the beginning of His ministry.
i. Luke 3:23 says, "Now Jesus himself was about thirty years old when he began his ministry"
ii. Numbers 4:3 says, "Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who come to serve in the work in the Tent of Meeting"
iii. 30 years of age was the standard age for someone beginning their time of public service.
iv. John was 6 months older that Jesus,
v. and his public ministry started about 6 months before this event.
C. The 3rd meaning that we see in Jesus’ baptism is that by being baptized,
i. Jesus was completely identifying Himself with sinful man.
ii. 2 Cor 5:21 says, "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."
iii. Even though Jesus didn’t need to repent and be baptized,
iv. because He alone was without sin...
v. He wanted to identify Himself with us.
D. The 4th meaning that we see is that Jesus intended to be an example for His followers.
i. Because Jesus was baptized...
ii. we know that we should participate in baptism.
3. If there were any questions before the baptism, as to whether this was appropriate or not, those questions were completely wiped away by what happened next.
A. Out text says, "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. And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." Matt 3:16-17 (NIV)