Luke 3:15-17, 21-22
We say that in baptism a person is marked with the cross of Christ. That mark confers identity. Like a tattoo or a scar, it tells a story. But it's not simply a story of something that has happened in the past. It's a story that is still unfolding.
Jesus is marked in his own sort of way in baptism. He is identified as God's beloved Son. Unlike in Matthew and Mark, the heavenly voice speaks directly to Jesus and lays a claim upon his life. Jesus' baptism hints at God's plan for the Son to redeem the world God so loves. We know as the story unfolds it will lead Jesus to the cross. Perhaps these words give Jesus the strength he needs to follow that path.
Your life story is still unfolding. Every day brings possibility, challenge, and opportunity to serve. How will your baptism affect how you live? Will God's word of love give you the strength to follow Christ's path?
Jesus, thank you for being my savior, my shepherd, my companion and the co-author of my life's story. Amen.
Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 (NRSV)
15 As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah,
16 John answered all of them by saying, "I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
17 "His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire."
21 Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened,
22 and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, "You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased."