“With You I am Well Pleased.” (Mark 1:11)
In the ancient church, Jesus’ Baptism was observed as the second of one of the ‘Feasts of Light.’ (The other two being Epiphany, marking the Wise Men’s recognition of the true nature of the Christ Child, and the wedding at Cana, at which Jesus performed his first miracle.)
These are ‘feasts of light’ because they illumine God’s nature. They are three occasions when God chose to reveal an aspect of God made flesh, as incarnated in Jesus Christ. And they tell us that the incarnation is not only about Jesus, but also about us: these three feasts demonstrate to us not only what God is like, but also who God wishes us to be.
Notice the timing of it all.
God blesses Jesus before he does anything we think might be ‘deserving’ of the blessing of a Baptism.
So it is with us.
Timing is everything…. We are born, blessed, and then sent, (in that order) to live out the goodness God has already placed in us.
Baptism is all about celebrating the incomparable gift we receive as creatures made in God’s image; equally, unequivocally, irrevocably.