Baptism Of The Jesus
The Baptism of Jesus is not only an important event in the history of Christianity, but it’s also an event that many biblical scholars believe is a true historical event. In other words, it’s an event that many scholars believe actually took place at Al-Maghtas — also known as Beyond the Jordan in what is now modern Jordan.
Before the significance of this event can be interpreted by modern Christians, however, first we have to take a look at the history behind this event. Only after that can we determine the narrative importance of this event.
The History Of Baptism As A Rite
Even though the purification rites in Halakha (the collective body of Jewish laws) aren’t specifically called baptism rites, they have a lot in common with Christian baptisms. The act of immersing a person in a natural body of water was used for ritual purification and for restoring the condition of the body to a pure state under special circumstances.
For example, according to the Law of Moses, a person who had become ritually defiled by their contact with a corpse had to use mikvah (a ritual purification bath) before they could participate in services at the Holy Temple. During the Messianic Movement, an early forerunner to modern Christianity, John the Baptist decided to adopt this ritual cleansing as a central tenet of this religion.
The History Of Jesus’ Baptism
Even before Jesus became his ministry, John the Baptist was considered to be the appointed messenger of God. He traveled widely and announced the coming of the Messiah to the people of the regions of Judea and Jerusalem. John called for people to repent and turn from their sins. He also called for them to be baptized. And John had been very busing baptizing true believers in the River Jordan.
Then one day, Jesus approached him and asked to be baptized. To this request, John told him that it was he who needed to be baptized by Jesus and not the other way around. According to Matthew 3:15, Jesus replied: “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” John then consented and confirmed that it was necessary for him to baptize Jesus in order to accomplish the Lord’s will.
According to Matthew 3:16, after Jesus was baptized and rose up from the water, heaven opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending upon him like a dove. And then a voice descended from the heavens saying: “This is my Son, whom I love and with him, I am well pleased.”
The Significance Of Jesus’ Baptism
Most Christian scholars believe that the significance of Jesus’s baptism is so that he could become one of us. That he has come as an equal to us for our own salvation. It’s also a narrative device, however, that shows all of us that Jesus was not only the chosen Messiah but that he also possessed great humility. And humility is something that all Christians should have before God.