Summary: This sermon is an attempt to help us to realize the gravity and magnitude of Who is being introduced in the first chapter of Mark. When we describe the Trinity as God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit it tends to fragment YHWH in our minds.
Please open your Bibles to Mark 1:9-13 which we will read in a few minutes.
Last week we took a look at what John the Baptist meant when he said that he was baptizing people with water but Jesus would baptize them with the Holy Spirit.
And we saw that Grace is God’s underserved favor toward humanity and that undeserved favor is demonstrated in God the Holy Spirit’s activity toward us and hopefully in and through us as well.
Prevenient Grace – God wooing and drawing us to Himself
Convicting Grace – God revealing our sinful condition to ourselves
Saving Grace – God enabling us to place our faith and trust and belief in Jesus
Sanctifying Grace – God enabling us to set aside our desires for His desires by coming into a relationship of perfect love with Him. Baptism in the Holy Spirit …
Today we’ll be reading the most condensed account that is found in the Gospels of Jesus’ baptism and testing in the wilderness.
With that in mind let’s go ahead and read Mark 1:9-13
In verse 1 we see that Jesus is the Son of God
In verse 10 we see God the Holy Spirit
In verse 11 we read of a voice coming from Heaven saying, “You are My Son, whom I love; with You I Am well pleased”.
Here God the Father is making a statement in front of everyone present that Jesus the Son of God is the Son of God the Father.
Let’s check out the Trinity who we are not capable of understanding
One God and yet is Three Persons.
(Display on the screen a typical drawing of the Trinity)
One and yet separate.
This image kind of helps …
(Now on a white board draw a circle with the words Father, Son and Holy Spirit inside but no divisions)
Trinity is hinted in OT and revealed in NT
Shema Yisrael - prayer
Deuteronomy 6:4 NIV
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.”
Deuteronomy 6:4 NIV
“Hear, O Israel: YHWH is our God, YHWH is one.”
Deuteronomy 4:35 NIV
“To you it was shown that you might know that YHWH, He is God; there is no other besides Him.”
Hebrew word for God is actually plural!
And, yet we see in the creation narrative, the LORD says,
Genesis 1:26a, 31a
“Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness …’” and, “God saw all that He had made …”
So, we see God saying “Let Us”, plural, and “In Our image”, plural, and, “according to Our likeness”, plural and then in verse 31 it says, “God saw all that He had made”.
And we see the same sort of thing going on in Isaiah chapter six.
Is God confused?
Plural and singular mixed?
(Put up blank screen)
No, God is NOT confused!
We are just incapable of comprehending Him!
(Refer to the drawing on the white board again of the circle with Father, Son and Holy Spirit in it)
There is one God not three but the three make one God.
Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all eternal but there are not three eternals but one.
God does not have three names, His only name is YHWH.
But YHWH’s three persons are known to us as YHWH the Father, YHWH the Son and YHWH the Holy Spirit.
The Athanasian Creed opens by saying, “We worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity; neither confounding the Persons; nor dividing the Essence.”
Confound – to mingle so they cannot be distinguished or separated
YHWH the Father, YHWH the Son and YHWH the Holy Spirit are not interchangeable but concrete, distinct persons.
And we cannot divide the essence such as a three leaf clover or an egg as examples.
So, why are we spending so much time on looking at the YHWH the Trinity?
Jesus who was baptized – totally God - eternal
When the Bible says in John 3:16 that, “(YHWH, the Trinity) so loved the world that He gave (YHWH) His only begotten Son ….”
It did not mean that that was the beginning of Jesus’ existence.
Mary not Mother of God – Mary Mother of Jesus – Jesus eternal!
So, here is the Son of God, God Himself, coming into humanity!
Why? To rescue us!
Here is YHWH the Son who has been the Lord of all since eternity past.
In Luke 22:37 Jesus says,
“It is written: ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors (wicked, lawless, criminals)’; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in Me. Yes, what is written about Me is reaching its fulfillment.”
Often this is referred to meaning that Jesus would be crucified between two thieves and that is true but perhaps there is more …