The Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist
Recently I heard a priest say that we shouldn’t be surprised if we lost track of the story of Jesus! He was referring to the fact of the many stories presented in the Liturgy at this time of year. You cannot even try to make any order of what comes first or last.
Today we hear of Jesus’ baptism, which took place in the River Jordan. All the Evangelists include this story which indicates to us that it is of note – the day that Jesus was baptised by His cousin. – when Jesus was subjected to the Law. No special arrangements were made for Jesus – when all the people had been baptised, Jesus arrived from Nazareth. John had already told the crowd that one “mightier” than he was to come in order to dispel the rumours that He, John was the Messiah.
Jesus took His turn to go in the water. As He emerged from the River Jordan it seemed as if He was praying. Then it was as if the heavens opened and the Holy Spirit descended like a dove and the voice of the Father was heard saying “You are my Son, the Beloved; My favour rests on You”
One of the themes of Luke’s Gospel is “Prayer” so he takes this opportunity to mention that when Jesus emerged from the river “He was praying.” The fact that the heavens then opened to reveal the Father and the Spirit joining with the Son – one of the few occasions we see the members of the Trinity together is surely no coincidence. Prayer can indeed overcome all obstacles of time or place.
Let us pray, Lord Jesus, through your Baptism may we be inspired to pray for all that we need. Help us always remember the needs of others, especially those who find it difficult to believe in Your love. Let them see Your face and glimpse the glory of the Trinity. Amen
Patricia O’Reilly OP