The Baptism of the Lord

Before beginning his public ministry, Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River by John, his relative.

This baptism by John had been a baptism of repentance but Jesus had no sins to repent of. Not needing to be baptized for Himself, He humbled Himself and was baptized out of love for us and obedience to God the Father.

The water of Jesus’ Baptism did not cleanse Him. Instead He cleansed the water so that we could be baptized in this water after Him so that our sin could be removed.

By lowering Himself and being baptized, Jesus shows his followers what they must do to be saved. His Baptism also shows us the gifts of sonship and kingship given to us by God through Baptism.

All three Persons of the Holy Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, are present at this event, emphasizing its significance in the life of Jesus Christ.

Catholics meditate on the Baptism of the Lord in the Jordan River in the First Luminous Mystery of the Rosary.

Connecting the end of the Christmas season and the beginning of Ordinary Time, the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord is celebrated on the Sunday after the Feast of the Epiphany.

Jesus establishes a pattern for his followers to copy:

Jesus did not need to be Baptized:

Jesus had no sin to be removed:

After all the people had been baptized and Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, Heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from Heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with You I am well pleased.”

Luke 3: 21-22

Jesus allowed Himself to be numbered among sinners:

A reminder that God enters into our sinful world to free us: 

As Jesus comes out of the water, the Holy Spirit descends upon Him like a dove, the heavens open and the Father’s voice is heard from on high: “You are my beloved Son; with You I am well pleased”. Thus the event of Christ’s Baptism is not only a revelation of his divine sonship, but at the same time a revelation of the whole Blessed Trinity. The Father — the voice from on high — reveals in Jesus the Only-Begotten Son consubstantial with Him, and all this comes about by virtue of the Holy Spirit Who, in the form of a dove, descends on Christ, the Lord’s Anointed.

Pope John Paul II, Homily, January 12, 1997

Jesus’ Baptism is linked to his Crucifixion:

Jesus’ Baptism foreshadows his death on the Cross:

Jesus’ public life begins with his Baptism by John in the Jordan. John preaches “a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins”. A crowd of sinners – tax collectors and soldiers, Pharisees and Sadducees, and prostitutes- come to be baptized by him. “Then Jesus appears.” The Baptist hesitates, but Jesus insists and receives Baptism. Then the Holy Spirit, in the form of a dove, comes upon Jesus and a voice from Heaven proclaims, “This is my beloved Son.” This is the manifestation (“Epiphany”) of Jesus as Messiah of Israel and Son of God.

Catechism of the Catholic Church 535

The Baptism of the Lord is a precious mystery of the Church:

The Jordan River is significant in the history of salvation:

The Truth, Goodness, and Beauty of the Catholic Church

THE reason to be Catholic:

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