The Danger of preaching about Jesus’ baptism (Matthew 3:13-17)

I really wrestled with today’s sermon. It was arduous — mainly because the temptation to preach a great warm fuzzy was right within my grasp. Afterall… what guy in the congregation doesn’t desperately want to hear the words, from his father, “This is my son, in whom I am well pleased”. Even if your daddy said it every day… our pathological bent-ness drives us to wanting to hear those words to assuage our deepest fear that we aren’t good enough.

But what does that have to do with Jesus’ baptism? Had he not been “well pleased” prior to his baptism? Had he sinned and needed “cleansing” before being baptized? Did he not know who he was… and need God to give him a psycological boost?


John’s baptism was one of both repentance AND eschatological promise… Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord…

And now… he’s here! Not only is he here… but he is is accompanied by ALL of the God-head… Father, Spirit and the Son! The Trinity is making a public appearance at the introduction of the Servant King Jesus.

The point isn’t that God can approve of us the way he approved of His Son… 😉

The point is that Jesus is beginning an adventure for all who will follow — are we ready to go with him?

It’s a dramatic pause… with one great introduction… with an implied question, “Are you ready? Now is the time!”

Here are two great intros that I wish I could have used:


Or perhaps even better: