The Gospel lesson for tomorrow records the events of John baptizing Jesus in the Jordan River. With His baptism Jesus will begin His earthly public ministry. John comes preaching repentance and baptizing in the Jordan. He prepares the way for Jesus by telling the people that one is coming who will baptize with the Spirit. Then comes Jesus from Nazareth and is baptized by John. According to Mark, this is a personal experience of Jesus, for He alone saw the dove and heard the Father’s voice. From this moment Jesus is the Son of God.
Matthew 3:13-17; Hebrews 2:17; Luke 4:18; 2 Corinthians 4:21 - The hymn of the day for the Baptism of our Lord is, To Jordan’s River Came Our Lord (LSB 405). In this hymn references are made to the Savior’s baptism. The Theme for the day emphasizes baptism as the time of the Spirit’s reception and the beginning of ministry.
To Jordan’s River Came Our Lord
The Christ, whom heav’nly hosts adored,
The God from God, the Light from Light,
The Lord of glory, pow’r, and might.
The Son of God in flesh disguised–
To stand beneath the Father’s will
And all His righteousness fulfill.
And John baptized the Lamb of God,
The Holy Spirit, heav’nly dove,
Descended on Him from above.
Came God’s own voice with words profound:
“This is My Son,” was His decree,
“The one I love, who pleases Me.”
5. The Father’s word, the Spirit’s flight
As God’s own choice, from Adam’s fall
To save the world and free us all.
This man is Christ, our substitute!
He was baptized in Jordan’s stream,
Proclaimed Redeemer, Lord supreme.
Let us honor Christ’s baptism and celebrate this feast in holiness. Be cleansed entirely and continue to be cleansed. Nothing gives such pleasure to God as the conversion and salvation of human beings, for whom his every word and every revelation exist. He wants you to become a living force for all humanity, lights shining in the world. You are to be radiant lights as you stand beside Christ, the great light, bathed in the glory of him who is the light of heaven. You are to enjoy more and more the pure and dazzling light of the Trinity. For now you have received — through not in its fullness — a ray of its splendor, proceeding from the one God, in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom be glory and power forever and ever. (Leo the Great)
To Jordan’s River Came Our Lord Lutheran Service Book (405) © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis
"Baptism" copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things