Perhaps we wonder why Jesus requested John to baptize him. Jesus did not have any sins to repent of and the baptism offered by John the Baptist was for repentance of sins (Luke 3:3). When sinners went to John at the river Jordan they did so because they acknowledged their sinfulness and their baptism symbolized turning over a new leaf in their lives and leaving sin behind. Jesus, although like us in every way, was without sin, as the Letter to the Hebrews assures us (Heb 4:15). That explains why John the Baptist objected to Jesus’ request for baptism in the Gospel of Matt, “I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me?” (Matt 3:14). The answer Jesus gave John helps us to understand why Jesus wanted to be baptized, “Allow it now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” (Matt 3:15) “To fulfill all righteousness” is why Jesus wanted to be baptized. We might say it is difficult to understand this answer because Jesus was not lacking in righteousness and was already righteous. So how could his baptism fulfill all righteousness? Sinless Jesus did not have any sins of his own to take down into the river Jordan, therefore it could only have been our sins that he took down into the river Jordan. Naturally no one would understand this at that time but they would realize this later when they understood that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. So Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan and his dying on the cross go together; he did both for our sins. He took our sins on his shoulders as he went down into the Jordan and as he died on the cross.
DATES TO REMEMBER
Pasta Dinner – The Pasta Dinner will be held this year on February 21st in the parish hall.Marriage course reminder – Please remember to sign up for the marriage course if you are getting married here in 2015 or beyond. Jan. 23-24 and Jan. 30-31, 2015.