Luke 3:1–6 (ESV)
Baptist Prepares the Way
3 In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee,
and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, 2 during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John the son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
3 And he went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 4 As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet,
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths straight.
5 Every valley shall be filled,
and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
and the crooked shall become straight,
and the rough places shall become level ways,
6 and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’ ”
Some have questioned whether Paul’s baptism is better than John’s. They will point
to the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost as the game-changer. They have a point, but I want to get to the heart of John’s Baptism. John states in verse 3: “And he went into all the region around
the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” We see the heart of John’s Baptism is repentance for the forgiveness of sins. I remember what one of my professors, Dr. Scaer, had stated. Everywhere
you see Jesus, you also see the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was present at John’s Baptism because the heart of his Baptism was the forgiveness of sins.
I pray: O Lord, help us to never forget our baptism and that we are still living in our baptism. Our sins have been washed away. Amen.