WHY was Jesus Baptized?


The inquirer's inquiry is in color.

Regarding Christ he writes about the baptism of Christ:

A better reading of His  baptism is as a man He needed to obey the command of  the Father.

Dear P,

I have followed somewhat your explanation of the human nature and baptism of Jesus and would like to make a few suggestion and comments ;

>>The Father God commanded man to be baptized  and so Jesus did it. In this way Jesus was fully  righteous as a man *not* because of the baptism *itself*  but because He had fulfilled every command ever given  Him by the Father. >>>

I can hardly agree with this, Paul.  Jesus was absolutely righteous in His human nature right from conception. "that holy thing" Luke 1:35.  The word "thing" is important in that verse because it speaks more of  His nature, than His person.  To say that Jesus had to obey the Father to be righteous would not be in keeping with His holy Person.

The reason Jesus was baptized is clearly given in John 1:30 - 34 "This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.  And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.   And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

This is He that came to Israel "by water"  1 John 5:6  6 This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.

He was manifested to Israel "by water" (baptism) and He was rejected by Israel by "by blood"  (crucifixion)

The Lord Jesus functioned on earth as "The Servant of Jehovah."  See Isa 42:1; 52:12 and 53:12  Phil 2:6 -8  says, Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:   But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

You will notice it was at His baptism that He was anointed with the Holy Spirit. There is a difference between having the Spirit in you and the Spirit being upon you.   The latter is for service.  Jesus at His baptism was manifested to Israel as their Messiah and He began a ministry of three years as "that Prophet like unto Moses."

Add these verses as well.

Acts 10:38, How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

This began at His baptism in John 1:32.... He came (was manifested) by water.

V. 39  And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:

This happened at the cross "He came by water and went out by blood.."

In His humanity He never ceased to be what He always, and He will never cease to be what He became.

Might I suggest that we look at Him in His dual nature, and not try to divided His humanity from His Deity.  Yet remembering that on earth He was operating in subject to the Father ,as the Servant.

Trust this helps
 

All comments and questions to: Harold Smith


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Updated  Feb 10th 2014 by Harold Smith