A crowd gathered at the edge of the Jordan River, waiting anxiously for their turn to be baptized by the one named John. The sun glistened on the water bouncing reflections everywhere. Children skipped rocks nearby creating ripples on the river. Excitement filled the air in anticipation of the coming One. Rumours ran wild of the man from Nazareth. Some called Him the Messiah.
“There is one who will come after me more powerful than I,” John said as he spoke to the followers. “One who I am unworthy to untie His sandals.” He motioned for the next person to step forward.
Grasping the man’s hands he said in a loud voice, “I baptize you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” He dunked the man into the river. The crowd cheered as the man emerged dripping with drops of water as his sin was washed away.
“Is that who I think it is?” one lady said to her friend as she pointed to the narrow path leading down to the river. Others noticed the young man and began to whisper amongst themselves. Soon their words could be heard by everyone.
“Could it be the Messiah?” one said.
“Is that the carpenter’s son?”
John looked in the same direction. His heart thudded in his chest as he saw Jesus walking towards him. “What is he doing here?” he thought to himself.
The crowed hushed in anticipation of what the man would say.
“I want to be baptized,” Jesus said.
John gulped in some air. “You want me to baptize you? It should be the other way around.” He fell to his feet and bowed his head.
Jesus bent down and pulled John up. “No brother, my Father wants you to baptize me.”
John nodded as he led Jesus to the river.
Can you imagine what it was like for John to baptize the Messiah? The Chosen One? God’s Son? Do you think he held his breath the entire time, scared he would make a mistake? Or worse, drop Jesus? We can only guess as the Scriptures don’t give us all the details. I can only imagine.
As we travelled through the Holy Land and neared the Jordan River, excitement filled my sister and I as we anticipated being dunked in the very same river as Jesus. Not the exact spot, but the exact river. Thoughts filled my mind as we prepared for our baptism. What was it like in Jesus’ day? Were my parents watching from Heaven? I wish Mom was here.
Both Sue and I had already taken the step of baptism, but we wanted to do it again in the Jordan River. To feel the same water Jesus felt as we rose up from the sinful waters renewed again, made my heart want to sing. To shout Hallelujah!
Tears filled our eyes as we hugged each other at the river’s edge. We spoke of being baptized where Jesus was, as well as of our mother who had wanted to take this trip, but couldn’t. Joy filled my heart as I believe Jesus opened a portal in Heaven that day and allowed Mom (and Dad) to witness our second dedication to Christ.
Luke 3:21-22 (The Message)
“After all the people were baptized, Jesus was baptized. As he was praying, the sky opened up and the Holy Spirit, like a dove descending, came down on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “You are my Son, chosen and marked by my love, pride of my life.”
P.S. Happy Birthday Mama! Have fun celebrating your 74th with Jesus and Papa. Love you forever. xoxoxo
Sue and I being baptized in the Jordan River by Pastor Jonathan and Pastor Jack
Our group getting ready to be baptized