I am not too sure where to begin – this is the first glimpse into the New Testament! Since I have been focusing on honour-shame, I think I will take a look at the power of water baptism. I remember my baptism when I was fourteen, I remember my wife’s baptism and I remember my two children and their baptism. Each of us had powerful connections with God as we obediently followed Jesus’ example.
Jesus then appeared, arriving at the Jordan River from Galilee. He wanted John to baptize him. John objected, “I’m the one who needs to be baptized, not you!”
But Jesus insisted. “Do it. God’s work, putting things right all these centuries, is coming together right now in this baptism.” So John did it.
The moment Jesus came up out of the baptismal waters, the skies opened up and he saw God’s Spirit—it looked like a dove—descending and landing on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “This is my Son, chosen and marked by my love, delight of my life.” – Matthew 3:13-17 MSG
I look at the ascribed honour that came from the Father and what a powerful example of the work of the Trinity, of the family of God. Jesus did nothing to earn honour, it was given to Him solely because He was God’s Son.
I find that Jesus strength comes from Him being completely secure in who He was. It is how He was so meek. Jesus did not have an honour-deficit, there was no competition to gain glory. So I find myself being challenged as I see Jesus confronting the devil in the desert. Jesus is courageous in His resistance, He understands God’s Word and obeys the principle of who God is – all throughout maintaining His integrity, holiness and honour. He actually wins the honour competition with the devil.
As a follower of Jesus, this is what it means to me.
- I experience God’s honour and love as as valuable prerequisite to ministry
- I embrace the honour and power of the Kingdom of God with absolute humility
- I identify rivalry as sin for there should be no honour competition in my faith community. I have experienced my shame covered and my honour restored just like the Prodigal son. This story, when I read about it here – The Father’s Love Gospel Booklet – reminded me to offer the same to my brother and sister in Christ
Thank You Father for water baptism – I went down with shame and came up with honour – such a powerful demonstration of Your love.