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Jesus Is Baptised

The Return to Nazareth

   After King Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph while he was still in Egypt.

   The angel said, “Get up and take the child and his mother back to Israel. The people who wanted to kill him are now dead.”

   Joseph got up and left with them for Israel. But when he heard that Herod’s son Archelaus was now the ruler of Judea, he was afraid to go there. Then in a dream, he was told to go to Galilee, and they went to live there in the town of Nazareth. So the Lord’s promise came true, just as the prophet had said, “He will be called a Nazarene.”  Matthew 2: 19-23

John the Baptist Prepares the Way

   Years later, John the Baptist started preaching in the desert of Judea. He said, “Turn back to God! The kingdom of heaven will soon be here.”

  John was the one the prophet Isaiah was talking about, when he said, “In the desert, someone is shouting, ‘Get the road ready for the Lord! Make a straight path for him.’ “

   John wore clothes made of camel’s hair. He had a leather strap around his waist and ate grasshoppers and wild honey.

   From Jerusalem and all Judea and from the Jordan River Valley crowds of people went to John. They told how sorry they were for their sins, and he baptised them in the river.

   Many Pharisees and Sadducees also came to be baptised. But John said to them: You bunch of snakes! Who warned you to run from the coming judgment? Do something to show that you have really given up your sins. And don’t start telling yourselves that you belong to Abraham’s family. I tell you that God can turn these stones into children for Abraham. An axe is ready to cut the trees down at their roots. Any tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into a fire.

   I baptise you with water so that you will give up your sins. But someone more powerful is going to come, and I am not good enough even to carry his sandals. He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His threshing fork is in his hand, and he is ready to separate the wheat from the husks. He will store the wheat in a barn and burn the husks in a fire that never goes out.  Matthew 3: 1-12

The Baptism of Jesus

   Jesus left Galilee and went to the Jordan River to be baptised by John. But John kept objecting and said, “I ought to be baptised by you. Why have you come to me?” Jesus answered, “For now this is how it should be because we must do all that God wants us to do.” Then John agreed.

   So Jesus was baptised. And as soon as he came out of the water, the sky opened, and he saw the Spirit of God coming down on him like a dove.

   Then a voice from heaven said, “This is my own dear Son, and I am pleased with him.” Matthew 3: 13-17

Let us Pray

O Shepherd of my soul, please lead me in this Christlike path. Thank You for bringing me new birth by Your Spirit. O, Lord, would You now empower my life for service unto You. Lead me by Your Spirit day by day. I admit my total need for such works of the Holy Spirit in my life. Please work in fullness, in Your name, I pray, Amen.

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