The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him" (Matthew 3:13).
Every moment of the earthly life of the Lord Jesus Christ shines with wonder, perhaps most importantly because He lived an earthly life.
"Great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifest in the flesh" (I Timothy 3:16).
That the living, eternal, and infinite God became human should stop us in our tracks upon every remembrance. That He became human and participated in a sinner's baptism should bring us to our knees in utter amazement, and even bewilderment. The Lord of perfect holiness and righteousness, in order to identify with us, subjected Himself to a rite that made Him appear to be something other than what He was. Certainly, John announced the Lord as "the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world rather than being a sinner Himself (John 1:29). However, how many actually heard him say those words? Proximity and dullness of understanding likely prohibited most from perceiving the Lord Jesus to be anything more than a sinner in need of repentance. He would later be accused of such. "This man is a sinner" (John 9:24).
The baptism, of course, foreshadowed other days when the Lord Jesus would do things He knew would make Him appear to be less than the pristinely perfect spiritual and moral Being He is. From fellowshipping with sinners, to plucking ears of corn on the Sabbath, to ultimately dying on a criminal's cross, our Savior lived in such a manner that to know Him as He is, we must heed His counsel: "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment" (John 7:24). For all the world, the Lord Jesus often lived in a manner that made Him seem a part of the world's fallenness, especially to those who had no eyes to see that "My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways" (Isaiah 55:8).
This speaks to a humility and devotion to God the Father's will far beyond our understanding and imagination. To be God, the second Person of the Trinity, and to become human? Great indeed is the mystery! To be God, but to appear as merely human in order to fulfill His Father's will and to redeem us from our sins? Wondrous beyond mystery! A manger, a sinner's baptism, a life lived in Divinity often obscured, and a cross that seemingly confirmed His ordinary humanness, all speak to our hearts of our blessed Savior's sublime character of a goodness for which no words exist to adequately convey. Thus, we fall before Him to our knees, asking Him to look within our hearts to see the appreciation our lips cannot express. In both Heaven and earth, there is no one like the Lord Jesus Christ, the God who became man, the man who remains God, and the glorious One who lived a life of quiet humility that all the more revealed His glory.
"Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not His mother called Mary? And His brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And His sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?"
Weekly Memory Verse
Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.