The Gospel of Matthew

This devotional is written by Paul Blandford. Paul is a super help on the Life Course and the man you need for tents at New Wine.

Matthew 3:13-17

The Baptism of Jesus
 13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?"

15 Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Then John consented.

16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, 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 alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased."

Reflection

In being baptised by John, Jesus acts humbly and obediently. He is filled with the Holy Spirit and the Spirit rests, stays on him. He hears God the Father declare and affirm who he is: “This is my Son, chosen, the delight of my life” (Message version).
So, it’s from this place of perfect humble submission to the Father; fully, continually filled by the Spirit and unshakeably confident in the unconditional approval and delight of the Father that Jesus: teaches, performs miracles and healings, challenges the religious authorities, redefines the kingdom of God, faces opposition and finally endures the pain, humiliation and death of the cross.
This is the DNA by which the disciples went onto minister and how we are called to follow. They and we are not perfect in this like Jesus. But we can grow in this new way of living and experience the power of God at work in us just as Jesus did.
So that’s that sorted then!
I know that actually my default operating system is to do things to get to the place of approval and connection. In this season lots of the things I can do have been taken away and I can’t be seen being a good christian. I am being corralled by God, learning that it is him who gives me my identity. I am not defined by or loved because of what I can or can’t do.
Can I sit still long enough to hear the Father say “You are my beloved son” to me?
Consider: What am I becoming as person in this time: at rest in God or frustrated and dissolutioned?
“You are Be loved” God
“To be is to do” Socrates.
“To do is to be”—Jean-Paul Sartre.
“Do be do be do” —Frank Sinatra.

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