The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord – Year A – Lectio divine on Mt 4,13-17
The scene of the Lord’s baptism inaugurates the public ministry of Jesus. Before Jesus is introduced to the people with the good news of the kingdom, God is introduced as his Father. Jesus must overcome the reluctance of John the Baptist because he wants to be baptised by him. The dialogue shows the unease of the early Christians who cannot deny the fact of Jesus’ baptism, but they see it as a meritorious decision on the part of Jesus. He accomplishes this rite of repentance as an act of righteousness. At his baptism Jesus fulfilled the will of God and for this reason God recognised him as his beloved son. Fulfilling all righteousness, being faithful to the will of God in all things, leads to becoming intimate with God. Before being proclaimed Son, Jesus does what God wants, even if it is not understood by men. Whoever seeks to do the will of God in everything, to fulfil all righteousness, will be recognised by God as his son or daughter. It does not matter what others think. What matters is to do what God asks of us.
13 At that time: Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptised by him. 14 John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptised by you, and do you come to me?” 15 But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now; for thus it is fitting for us to fulfil all righteousness.” Then he consented. 16 And when Jesus was baptised he went up immediately from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and alighting on him; 17 and lo, a voice from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”