THURSDAY 23RD JULY, 2020
THEME: Fulfilling All Righteousness
PASSAGE: Matthew 3:13–17
HYMN: MHB 557- WHAT is our calling’s glorious hope.
MEMORY VERSE: Matthew 3:15 “Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfil all righteousness.”
John the Baptist, feeling unqualified, tried to deter Jesus from coming to him for baptism. John would have preferred to be baptized by Jesus because he had told people that Jesus’ baptism would be far greater than his, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfil all righteousness” was the Lord’s admonition to John (Matt.3: 15).
Jesus was not baptized for repentance of sin because He never sinned. Rather, He subjected Himself to the baptism of John to demonstrate approval and support for the ministry of His forerunner. It was an act of humility to inaugurate His own public ministry and it was rewarded with the descending of the Holy Spirit on Him. The risen Christ would later instruct His disciples to baptize people, “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28: 19).
To fulfil all righteousness is to make God’s will our own will in order to accomplish God’s purpose for our lives. This was well understood by John who did not take the privilege of baptizing Jesus as a sign of reversal of his role vis-à-vis Jesus’ earthly ministry. John would later testify in John 3:27-30 that, “…You yourselves bear me witness, that I said,’ I am not the Christ,’ but, ‘I have been sent before Him.’ He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease.”
As leaders, let us learn from the humility of Jesus in submitting Himself to the baptism of John. As followers may we also be counselled by the humility of John who did not abuse the privilege given to him.
PRAYER: Lord, please give me the grace to accept Your will as my will and, by so doing, fulfil Your purpose for my life.
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