If you will remember, during advent, we talked about the contrast between the journey of John versus the journey of Jesus.
We have talked about the birth of Jesus and all that this brings for us as His people. Today, I want to jump to a time after Jesus has grown up and is preparing for His earthly ministry. It seems from the scriptures that Jesus has been fairly low key as a child…yes, He taught in the synagogue as one with wisdom beyond His years…but hasn’t actually begun His public ministry. Jesus was in constant communication with the Father. The Father wasn’t ready for Him to begin that part of His ministry. God has a plan and a purpose for each of us…Jesus wanted to live out that plan and purpose – but in God’s time. So, how does He begin His public ministry…where He begins to call and to heal and to touch and to change others?
Matthew 3:13-17 – Jesus is first baptized. He is baptized by John who has been preparing the way. John has been telling people about the importance of repentance and that the kingdom is at hand. Jesus is baptized – not because He is a sinner and has repented…but as a sign that He is publicly showing others who He belongs to and He is ready to serve. He commands us to baptize as well.
Matthew 4:1-11 – the temptations
Jesus then spends 40 days tempted by the devil. Hard to say that the devil isn’t real if you read this scripture. Jesus is tempted just like we are tempted.