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Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:15-17 – The Baptisms of the One Coming

Luke 3:15-17 – The Baptisms of the One Coming

 

LK3:15 Now the people were in great expectation[1] and everyone was wondering in their hearts regarding John, whether he might be the Christ. LK3:16 So then John told them all: “I baptize you with water, but someone is coming who is stronger than me – someone I am not worthy[2] to even untie his sandal straps – he will baptize you with holy Pneuma[3] and with fire. LK3:17 His winnowing tool is in his hand and he is ready to clean out his threshing floor [Micah 4:12] to gather the wheat[4] into his barn. The chaff [Psalm 1:4] he will burn up in a fire that cannot be put out. [Isaiah 66:24]

 


[1] Great expectation: Or, suspense, on tiptoe. There was a strong messianic spirit of anticipation at the beginning of the 1st Century. Compare Luke 19:11.

[2] I am not worthy: For details see notes in Nazarene Commentary 2000 on Mark 1:7.

[3] Baptize you with holy Pneuma: For details see notes in Nazarene Commentary 2000 on spirit baptism compare 1 Corinthians 12:12, 13.

 

 

  • The Wheat and the Chaff (graceofourlord.com)
    The baptisms performed by John the baptist, the truth in his preaching, and the authoritative warnings of the urgency of repentance were just some of the things that made the people who witnessed it all (and, no doubt, many who simply had heard about him) wonder if he was the Messiah that had been promised to come since the beginning (Genesis 3:15). Indeed, Luke 3:15 points out that many must have desperately wanted him to be “the one.” But verse 16 tells us how John answered that question:

    “I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
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    Rather than being something positive for Christ’s followers, the baptism by fire is the judgment for the unbelievers, with the unbelievers represented by “chaff” in that verse. Chaff is the dry, scaly, inedible casing of seed or grain. Before the invention of the threshing machine in the latter part of the 18th century, threshing was often done by placing the sheaves on the threshing floor and beating them or running over them. It was the most labor intensive part of the harvest. Afterward, the wheat would be separated by winnowing, often done with a winnowing fork by tossing the grain into the wind so that the chaff would be blown away. The chaff was often burned then to dispose of it.

  • In those days: John’s Baptism (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    In the gospel accounts all of John’s words (except the word against Antipas) are spoken to persons seeking this baptism. His words show that John was unreceptive to those whom he judged to have bad faith, while he was friendly to those who were truly repentant. To the former he repeated threats and warnings and perhaps added new ones, while to the latter he gave hope for further dramatic renewal of their lives as well as ethical guidance relevant to their particular vocations. The former group seems to have been made up of people whose commonality was lording power over the common people: the religious leadership, the wealthy, the tax collectors and soldiers.
  • In those days: some notes (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    The Pharisees and Sadducees are warned that mere ritual is inadequate and will not preserve them from God’s wrath. Rather they must do good deeds that are appropriate to genuine repentance in view of the coming kingdom. Producing fruit as a metaphor for a repentant lifestyle occurs elsewhere in Matthew (3:10; 7:16–20; 12:33; 13:8, 23, 26; 21:19) and is common in the OT (Ps 1:3; Isa 3:10; 5:1–7; Hos 10:1). The image of Israel as the tree from which fruit is expected echoes Hosea 9:16; Isaiah 27:6; Jeremiah 12:2, 17:8; and Ezekiel 17:8-9, 23.
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    Matthew 3:12 winnowing fan… threshing floor…gather his wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn: The discrimination between the good and the bad is compared to the procedure by which a farmer separates wheat and chaff. The winnowing fan was a forklike shovel with which the threshed wheat was thrown into the air. The kernels fell to the ground; the light chaff, blown off by the wind, was gathered and burned up. The scene echoes OT passages such as Ps 1:4; Prov 20:26; Isa 41:14–16; Jer 15:7; 51:33; Dan 2:35; Hos 6:11; 13:3; Joel 3:13; and Mic 4:12–13.
  • The Baptism of Discipleship II (followingjesustogether.org)
    The baptism of discipleship is an act of obedience and a declaration of allegiance.  Those who follow Jesus in baptism announce their decision to follow him.  They declare their allegiance to him as Lord.  They symbolize their death to themselves by being buried (submerged) and then raised to walk in the life of Jesus.  (Note:  I’m not saying “lifestyle” of Jesus.  I’m saying the indwelling, imparted life of Jesus in us.  We live by him.  (Of course this will determine your lifestyle.)
  • Fire and the Kingdom of Heaven (wsforchrist.com)
    His shovel is ready in his hand, to winnow His threshing-floor and gather the wheat into His granary; but He will burn the chaff on a fire that can never go out.”  John was revealing Jesus.
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    As we repent behavior that is unacceptable to God, the thoughts that preceded that behavior are cleansed via a purifying fire, and washed away with our Holy Baptism.  Once cleansed, we each have the opportunity to start anew, never to commit that sin again.
  • John the Baptist and the Pharisees (travismikhailblog.wordpress.com)
    John’s baptism differed from sacramental Baptism, which confers forgiveness and the regenerating grace of justifying faith (Acts 2:38). His was a visible token of repentance and preparation for the Messiah (cf. Is 1:16; Heb9:10; CCC 718).
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    with fire: A symbol of God and his purifying judgment (Deut 4:24; Sir 2:5; Is 4:3-5; Acts 2:3-4; CCC 696).
  • Walk in victory with Jesus : Day one (kzlam36.wordpress.com)
    Don’t just say to each other, ‘We’re safe, for we are descendants of Abraham.’ That means nothing, for I tell you, God can create children of Abraham from these very stones.10 Even now the ax of God’s judgment is poised, ready to sever the roots of the trees. Yes, every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire.
  • “Bear Fruits In Keeping With …” Bible Reading Thoughts for March 12th (therugbychristadelphians.wordpress.com)
    “His winnowing fork (used in harvesting) is in his hands to clear his threshing floor, and to gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” [v.17] Chaff are ears of wheat that are useless, they have failed to produce; how much chaff can God see in the world today!!     Let us make sure we are not among the chaff!  Let us all “bear good fruit” for John also preached, “Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”[v.9]  Bearing good fruit should – indeed – must be – a labour of love for our Lord – before the harvest time occurs.  What wonders then follow!

     

 

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Nazarene Commentary Mark 1:1-8 – The Beginning of the Good News

The Beginning of the Evangel, by Mark

Chapter One:

Preparations for the Appointed time

Mark 1:1-8 – The Beginning of the Good News

Matthew 3:13-17[1]

MK1:1 This is the origin of the Good News about Jesus Christ the Son of the God.[2] MK1:2 Just as it is written in Isaiah the Prophet,[3] “See, I am sending My messenger before you and he will prepare your way … [Malachi 3:1] MK1:3 The voice of one crying aloud: ‘In the desert prepare a road for the Lord:[4] Make His highways straight.’” [Isaiah 40:3] MK1:4 So John the Baptizer came from the desert proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. MK1:5 People of all kinds when out to meet him in the wilderness as well as the inhabitants of Jerusalem of all classes. These were baptized by him in the Jordan river, openly confessing their sins [against the Law of Moses]. MK1:6 John dressed in a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt. His food was locusts and wild honey. MK1:7 This was his message: “There is One coming after me who is greater than me. One whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop and loosen. MK1:8 I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the holy Pneuma.”[5]


[1] Matthew 3:13-17: For details see notes in Nazarene Commentary 2000 on Matthew.

[2] The Son of God: Now recognized as not adequately supported.

[3] Isaiah the Prophet: Two verses are quoted. [Malachi 3:1; Isaiah 40:3]

[4] The Lord: Or, “the Lord’s way” or “YHWH’s way.” The Hebrew source of the quotation has the noma sagrada, YHWH [Yehowah; Jehovah]

[5] Baptize you with the holy Pneuma: On the holy Pneuma see notes on 1 Corinthians 2:16 and 1 Corinthians 12:13.

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Connecting articles:

Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:1, 2 – Factual Data

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:1-6 – A Wilderness Baptist Prepares the Way

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:7-12 – Opposition and Two Baptisms

Next: Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:3-6 – John Preaches Baptism of Repentance

The supposed location where John baptized Jesu...

The supposed location where John baptized Jesus Christ East of the River Jordan. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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  1. He has given us the Pneuma, the force, from Him
  2. Isaiah’s Book of the Messenger of Glad Tidings
  3. Baptism
  4. Were Apostles baptised
  5. True Hope

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  • A sermon for Epiphany (frscott94.wordpress.com)
    Even though the Temple is magnificently restored, and all the proper sacrifices are being made it’s all a bit edgy, it’s not quite right. A sign of trouble are communities of folks, who live in isolated communities, like the Essenes who live in Qumran, where the Dead Sea scrolls were found, who preach a different relationship with God. Many of them practice a baptism that washes away sins. Perhaps the most dramatic of them is John the Baptist. Not only is John baptizing folks, he is declaring the kingdom of heaven has come near
  • What’s in the Water? Musings on Jesus’ Baptism (johncalvinpress.wordpress.com)
    Something very significant is happening here on the banks of the Jordan River where we find John the Baptist and Jesus together.  In Mark’s gospel, the oldest of the four, this text is the opening event.  All four gospel writers place the story at or near the beginning of their work, and in each case, it precedes their account of the public ministry of Jesus.
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    In Matthew’s account of Jesus’ baptism, we find that all authority in heaven and on earth is given to Jesus through the dove that alights on him and the voice that speaks from heaven.
  • Baptism | Matthew 3:13-17 (marywbrown.wordpress.com)
    In the 2nd century, Ignatius of Antioch explained the event by saying that Jesus was purifying the water – not the other way around. Justin Martyr said that Jesus was baptized “solely for the sake of humanity.”*
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    if baptism – Jesus’ or your own or someone else’s – makes you a little uncomfortable…
    …then consider that discomfort God’s signature move.
  • Let it be so now (experiencethewilderness.wordpress.com)
    Perhaps its that to him things seemed to be turned upside down, inside out and backwards, that Jesus is there submitting before John to be baptized.  And maybe that’s what seems to bother John and and maybe us too the most.  And so we try to bring order to that chaos we feel…those moments that don’t make sense.  And maybe its all John can do to hold back when he wants to switch places with Jesus.
  • New English Sunday: The Baptism of Our Lord (Epiphany 1, Year A) – Matthew 3:13-17 (bobobrizinski.wordpress.com)
    Then Jesus arrived at the Jordan from Galilee, and came to John to be baptized by him. John tried to dissuade him. ‘Do you come to me?’ he said; ‘I need rather to be baptized by you.’ Jesus replied, ‘Let it be so for the present; we do well to conform in this way with all that God requires.’ John then allowed him to come. After baptism Jesus came up out of the water at once, and at that moment heaven opened; he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove to alight upon him; and a voice from heaven was heard saying, ‘This is my Son, my Beloved, on whom my favour rests.’ (NEB)
  • Baptism adorn us with a new attire (twocatholicfriends.wordpress.com)
    This is my beloved Son: this was the first few words that was uttered after Christ’s baptism. Much more, as followers of Christ that has been ransomed by his blood. Immediately after our baptism, the gate of heaven open down to us paralleling the way Heaven opened when Jesus stepped out of the water and the Holy Spirit is being outpoured into our life and we become instantly renewed.So, baptism for us Christians is a day of joy for we are adorned anew with a holy attire, the one we should preserve jealously till death(pure as white as snow before God),so, praises should not be found wanting on our lips.
  • Matthew 3:13 (aigburthstannes.wordpress.com)
    You can make it 3 weeks without food, though we promise you that won’t be fun. But after only 3 days, you need water or you’ll perish.
  • Sermo Dei: Baptism of Our Lord (daringlutheran.net)
    Jesus does not need this baptism. He has no need for forgiveness.  He has nothing to repent of. Jesus comes to the baptismal waters of the Jordan fully righteous, perfect, without blemish or spot or stain.Yet Jesus comes to these waters loaded down with sin – “…the sin of the world…” as John put it. That’s why Jesus is here, to fully be a sinner with us. There is no distance between us and Christ, no separation. In His baptism, Christ makes Himself completely one with us. What John saw as necessary separation – sinner’s baptism only for sinners – Jesus gently puts aside and says “it is fitting for us…”Jesus’ Baptism is our Baptism. It is not the water that does it – it’s no mere water – but it’s the Word in and with the water that makes this Baptism. That is, it’s Jesus there in the water – being sinner for you – that makes it.
  • A Title You Can’t Wash Off (jaredhillaryruark.wordpress.com)
    Titles can build up and break down. Titles are the building blocks of our social world. You ask someone who they are, or you say Tell me about yourself and they’ll give you titles. It’s our default response. My name’s Jared and I’m a minister, a student, a brother, a son, a fan of this that and the other thing. Titles are so important that we rarely reflect on their importance. But it’s a telling if you do.
  • Lay down your burden (granpresblog.wordpress.com)
    You know the word vulnerable actually from a latin word which means to be wounded, so to be vulnerable, means allowing yourself to be wounded. It means recognizing that you don’t have it together, that you are broken, you are wounded. Being vulnerable is a courageous act.
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    As we go to the water we forget the myth that we are perfect, that we have it all together, and we let our tears rise, and let our chin quiver on the shoulder of the one who created us.Jesus knew what it meant to be wounded. Throughout his life, he had a knack for finding the most broken hearted people in a community, whether they were full of disappointment, or shame, or in deep grief. He would seek them out, and spend time with them, learned what they were most vulnerable about and would meet them there in their vulnerability.
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Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:7-12 – Opposition and Two Baptisms

Matthew 3:7-12 – Opposition and Two Baptisms

|| Mark 1:7-8; Luke 3:7-11, 15-18

MT3:7 When John saw many Pharisees[1] and Sadducees[2] coming to the baptism he said to them: “Generation of vipers, who showed you how to flee from the coming wrath? MT3:8 Therefore, produce fruitage[3] worthy of repentance. MT3:9 Do not be presumptuous[4] and tell yourselves, ‘Abraham is our father!’ I tell you that the God[5] is able to raise up Abrahamic children from these stones! MT3:10 The ax is already lying at the root of the trees. So every tree not producing good fruit[6] will be cut down and thrown in a fire. MT3:11 True, I baptize you people in water because of your repentance, but there is One who comes after me[7] – I am not worthy to remove his sandals – he will baptize in holy Pneuma[8] [Isaiah 44:3] as well as with fire.[9] MT3:12 That One’s winnowing shovel is in his hand and he will completely clean up his threshing floor[10] and will gather his wheat into the storehouse, but the chaff he will burn up in an inextinguishable fire.”[11]


[1] Pharisees: The name means “Separated Ones” and occurs 87 times: Matthew, 29, Mark, 12, Luke, 20, John, 20, Acts, 6. A prominent Jewish sect described by Josephus: “And so great is their influence with the masses that even when they speak against a king or high priest, they immediately gain credence.” [Jewish Antiquities, XIII, 288 (x, 5)] “They believe that souls have power to survive death and that there are rewards and punishments under the earth for those who have led lives of virtue or vice: eternal imprisonment is the lot of evil souls, while the good souls receive an easy passage to a new life.” (Jewish Antiquities, XVIII, 14 [i, 3]) “Every soul, they maintain, is imperishable, but the soul of the good alone passes into another body, while the souls of the wicked suffer eternal punishment.… [They] attribute everything to Fate and to God; they hold that to act rightly or otherwise rests, indeed, for the most part with men, but that in each action Fate co-operates.” [The Jewish War, II, 162, 163 (viii, 14)] Nicodemas was a Pharisee (John 3:1, 2; 7:47-52; 19:39). Paul was a Pharisee (Philippians 3:5).

[2] Sadducees: The name occurs 16 times (Jewish Antiquities, XIII, 293 [x, 6]; XIII, 172, 173 [v, 9]) They did not believe in angels or the resurrection. They appealed to the wealthy. Jewish Antiquities, XIII, 298 (x, 6); XVIII, 16, 17 (i, 4); The Jewish War, II, 162-166 (viii, 14).

[3] Fruitage: True repentance (a change of mind; a sorrow because of sin) must be accompanied with some evidence of such. Paul lists some identifying fruitage (2 Corinthians 7:10, 11).

[4] Presumptuous: See Deuteronomy 18:21-22.

[5] The God: The Greek is HO THEOS.

[6] Fruit: Compare John 15:2, 6. Twice John has exhorted these Jews to produce fruitage consistent with true repentance.

[7] One who comes after me: That is, the Messiah

[8] Baptize in holy Pneuma: Possibly an allusion to Isaiah 44:3.

[9] Fire: The Jews have two choices, that is two baptisms: spirit or the fire of destruction. See the next verse regarding this fire.

[10] Threshing floor: Possibly an illusion to Isaiah 41:15, 16.

[11] Inextinguishable fire: Or, KJV: unquenchable; WMS: fire that can never be put out. A metaphor for everlasting destruction as in the case of the Second Death (Revelation 20:13, 14).

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Connecting articles:

Nazarene Commentary Luke 2:41-50 – Twelve Year Old Jesus in the Temple + Luke 2:51-52 – Jesus continued to be in subjection to his parents

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:1-6 – A Wilderness Baptist Prepares the Way

Nazarene Commentary Mark 1:1-8 – The Beginning of the Good News

James Tissot's John and the Pharisees

James Tissot’s John and the Pharisees (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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  1. On the Nature of Christ
  2. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  3. Jesus begotten Son of God #11 Existence and Genesis Raising up
  4. Repentance and conversion are not milestones which we pass on the way of life and never see again
  5. Looking for True Spirituality 5 Fruitage of the Spirit
  6. Why do we need a ransom?
  7. Leaving behind the lives we have touched.
  8. Dying or not
  9. What happens when we die?
  10. Decomposition, decay – vergaan, afsterven, ontbinding
  11. Immortality, eternality – onsterfelijkheid, eeuwigheid
  12. Knowing where to go
  13. Two states of existence before God
  14. The one who makes us well and gives life
  15. The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ
  16. We will all be changed
  17. Rebirth and belonging to a church
  18. Baptism
  19. Were Apostles baptised
  20. True Hope
  21. Epitome of the one faith
  22. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother

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  • John the Baptist and the Pharisees (travismikhailblog.wordpress.com)
    John’s baptism differed from sacramental Baptism, which confers forgiveness and the regenerating grace of justifying faith (Acts 2:38). His was a visible token of repentance and preparation for the Messiah (cf. Is 1:16; Heb9:10; CCC 718).

    with water: John administered a baptism by water alone as a sign of purification. But as was shown in Noah’s day, water alone cannot cleanse the soul; the sinfulness of man’s heart remained unchanged even after the flood (Gen 6:5; 8:21). Only the Sacrament of Baptism infuses the Holy Spirit (Jn 3:5) and marks one’s adoption into God’s family (28:19) (CCC 1265).
    with fire: A symbol of God and his purifying judgment (Deut 4:24; Sir 2:5; Is 4:3-5; Acts 2:3-4; CCC 696).
  • Letting the Light In – 4th Sunday of Advent (thewannabesaint.com)
    John’s ministry is in contrast to Jesus’, although their central message, “Repent for the kingdom is near,” appears identical. John remains in the wilderness, calling men and women to come out to him. Jesus seems to seek out crowded cities and synagogues. John sternly requires his followers to repent and to be baptized, to lead an acetic life. Jesus says; “follow me” or do as you see me do.
  • The yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees (asicansee.wordpress.com)
    Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
  • In those days: some notes (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    Matthew 3:7 many of the Pharisees and Sadducees: the former were marked by devotion to the law, written and oral, and the scribes, experts in the law, belonged predominantly to this group. The Sadducees were the priestly aristocratic party, centered in Jerusalem. They accepted as scripture only the first five books of the Old Testament, followed only the letter of the law, rejected the oral legal traditions, and were opposed to teachings not found in the Pentateuch, such as the resurrection of the dead. Matthew links both of these groups together as enemies of Jesus (Matthew 16:1, 6, 11, 12; cf Mark 8:11-13, 15). The threatening words that follow are addressed to them rather than to “the crowds” as in Luke 3:7. coming to his baptism: the phrase is ambiguous. It can also be translated as “coming against baptism.” Some older translations read “coming to watch his baptism;” however, there is no verb indicating a “watching” activity. vipers: a genus of snakes prevalent in wilderness areas. The term is used metaphorically for evil or evil people (cf.  Mt 12:34; 23:3). The accusatory description of the Pharisees and Sadducees as an evil “brood of vipers” is twice echoed by Jesus (12:34; 23:33, cf. Gen 3:1; Ps 58:4).   the coming wrath: the judgment that will bring about the destruction of unrepentant sinners.
  • In those days: John the Baptist (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    A new section of Matthew begins at Mt 3:1. From Jesus’ infancy we jump several decades in time.  Without warning or preparation, John the Baptist appears in the wilderness preaching not (as in Mark 1:4) a “baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins,” but rather repentance, “for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matt 3:2). This is also different than Luke’s gospel in which we follow the story of Zechariah, Elizabeth and their son John (Lk 1); we are not told of the relationship between Mary and Elizabeth – hence there is no announced family relationship between John the Baptist and Jesus.
  • He is Always Coming to Us – A Sermon on Matthew 3:13-17 (interruptingthesilence.com)
    Jesus’ baptism sets before us a choice. We can either prevent or consent, closing or opening ourselves, to the baptism of Jesus. The issue is not Jesus’ coming to us. The issue is our preventing or consenting to his coming. Our work then is to always move from preventing to consenting. That is our repentance just as it was for John.
  • December 8 (stmarkssa.wordpress.com)
    repentance is all about change, to go beyond where we are and open ourselves to transformation. This requires time apart from my cultural context and examination of my motives and areas of my life needing change. To live in or return to the kingdom of God, requires growth and transformation by God’s love, forgiveness, and grace.
  • Second Sunday of Advent 8.12.13 Matthew 3.1-12 (preachersfriend.wordpress.com)
    Hand Questions

    1. What could active, positive repentance mean in your life?
    2. What’s to prevent you from changing any habits of life that distance you from God or neighbour?
    3. Are you ready for the baptism of Holy Spirit and fire?
  • Getting ready for Advent 2 (revdavidyonker.wordpress.com)
    The first thing that John the Baptist says is, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”  People were coming to him from Jerusalem and Judea, all around the region of the Jordan (both urban and rural places).  They were coming to confess their sins and be baptized.

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:1-6 – A Wilderness Baptist Prepares the Way

Matthew 3:1-6 – A Wilderness Baptist Prepares the Way

|| Mark 1:1-6; Luke 3:1-6, 12-14

The Jordan River

The Jordan River (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

MT3:1 But in those days[1] John the Baptist[2] came from the Judean wilderness,[3] MT3:2 preaching, “Repent[4] for the Realm[5] of Heaven has drawn near.[6] MT3:3 For this is the One spoken of by Isaiah[7] the prophet, saying, ‘A voice of one crying out in the wilderness, “Make ready the Way of YHWH – make straight His roads.”’” [Isaiah 40:3] MT3:4 But this John dressed in camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist and hips. His food was locusts[8] and wild honey. MT3:5 Then Jerusalem and all the Judeans[9] and all the country along the Jordan came to John, MT3:6 and they publicly confessed their sins[10] and John baptized[11] them in the Jordan river.[12]


[1] Those days: Luke gives the precise timing by paralleling these activities with several contemporary rulers and priests (Luke 3:1ff). It was the year 29 AD.

[2] John the Baptist: The prophet from the desert is mentioned 150 times in the Christian Bible. The name “John” means “Yah Favors.” Jesus ranks him equal to any of the greatest people in the Bible (Matthew 11:11, 12). Jesus compares him to the prophet Elijah.

[3] Wilderness: BER: the Judean desert.

[4] Repent: Repentance is a key word in the Bible. It means to “change the mind” or “feel sorry” for sins. The word group occurs 70 times in the Bible with the first at Job 42:6 and most often in Luke, with Revelation second. John’s call to repentance was regarding sins against the Mosaic Law.

[5] Realm: The Greek is BASILEIA and is often translated “kingdom.” MOF: Reign of heaven. The word occurs 366 times, first at Genesis 10:10 and most often in Daniel and then Matthew. The word may mean the seat of government, that is the king, or source of the authority. It may also mean the realm, territory or domain of the King. Here John has in mind the future manifestation or appearance of the Messiah Jesus, the “king of Israel.” “Kingdom of heaven” (Matthew) or “kingdom of God” (Luke) is used most often by the Nazarene to mean the “realm of profession” or the Church (Compare the parables in Matthew 13).

[6] Near: Usually the word “near” means within hours or days. John has in mind the coming of Messiah as the future King of Israel.

[7] Isaiah: The quote is from Isaiah 40:3 and leans toward the LXX though paraphrases a bit.

[8] Locusts: A common food of Middle Eastern nomads. GDSP: dried locusts; BECK: grasshoppers. John is very austere if not ascetic.

[9] All the Judeans: John’s preaching has a wide impact among the Jews.

[10] Their sins: That is sins against the Mosaic Law. These are all Jews.

[11] Baptized: The word (BAPTIZONTO) means “immerse” or “submerge” (RHM) and always occurs where there is “a large body of water.” The word group occurs over 100 times. There are two water baptisms in the Christian Bible: that of John the Baptist for Jews (Acts 18:25; 19:3) and Christian baptism into Nazarene discipleship. “Baptism” is connected to salvation (1 Peter 3:21). There is a baptism into God’s spirit (1 Corinthians 12:13; John 3:3-5). There is a baptism into Christ’s leadership (1 Corinthians 10:2). There is a baptism into the life course as a disciple (Mark 10:38). There is a baptism into death (Luke 12:38; Romans 6:4; Colossians 2:12). Baptism is a fundamental teaching (Hebrews 6:2). Jesus commanded his eleven apostles to go and baptize people of all nations (Matthew 28:18, 19).

  • December 8 (stmarkssa.wordpress.com)
    To the people of the Old Testament period, the word would mean to turn, to return. Their experience of being in exile in Babylon and returning to Jerusalem was a powerful cultural memory to them. When “repent” was translated from the Greek, another meaning emerged: “to go beyond the mind that we have.” So repentance is all about change, to go beyond where we are and open ourselves to transformation.
  • The Gospel of Matthew: The Messiah of Promise 3:1-12 (anchorlongbeach.wordpress.com)John the Baptist came at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, which Mark notes as the first words of his gospel. Luke, marks the time with his announcement (“15th year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar,” which puts it around 26 A.D. making both John and Jesus around 30 (See Luke 3:23), but all four gospels discuss this event in Jesus’ life, because it is an important fulfillments of prophecy about the Messiah (See Matthew 11:9-10 cf. Malachi 3:1). The fact that John the Baptist came “preaching in the desert,” is significant, because the desert was a place that God had called His people out from to worship Him, and it was usually represented renewal.
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    Although the Greek word for “Repentance” is Metanoia, which carries the idea of a changed mind, theologian D.A. Carson writes; “What is meant is not merely intellectual change of mind or more grief, still less doing penance…but a radical transformation of the entire person, a fundamental turnaround involving mind and action and including overtones of grief, which results in ‘fruit in keeping with repentance.’”Now, John’s baptism, was preparing “the way” for those to come to Jesus, but as we see elsewhere, it was only after Christ was raised from the dead that repentance led to the transformation of the Holy Spirit (See Point #5 cf. Acts13: 24ff; 19:4-6).
  • Getting ready for Advent 2 (revdavidyonker.wordpress.com)
    We know that the person John is talking about is  Jesus, but Craddock notes, “the narrative asks us to exercise restraint and let the story unfold in its own time.” We’ll get to Jesus soon enough.  John simply says in verse 11, “he who is coming after me” and “I am not worthy to carry his sandals.”  If you’ve heard the story before we know who is to come.  But when it comes to the church, how many times to we assume that everyone knows the story.  We assume people know about God’s love made known in Jesus Christ; we assume they know the story of his birth.  We assume because we know.  But that isn’t the case.  We still have to prepare the way of the Lord.
  • In those days: John’s Baptism (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    John’s Baptism.“to lead righteous lives, to practice justice toward their fellows and piety towards God, and so doing join in baptism”  John’s baptism was a symbolic act that people who had already done these things – or were committed to living as such – were forming a “faithful remnant” of the covenant.  In the gospel accounts all of John’s words (except the word against Antipas) are spoken to persons seeking this baptism. His words show that John was unreceptive to those whom he judged to have bad faith, while he was friendly to those who were truly repentant. To the former he repeated threats and warnings and perhaps added new ones, while to the latter he gave hope for further dramatic renewal of their lives as well as ethical guidance relevant to their particular vocations. The former group seems to have been made up of people whose commonality was lording power over the common people: the religious leadership, the wealthy, the tax collectors and soldiers.
  • Lectionary blogging: Why was Jesus baptized? (johnmeunier.wordpress.com)
    It seems only right that we ask questions about the meaning of baptism since John the Baptist himself asked such questions.
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    Wesley comes down on the side of interpreting Jesus’ baptism as a model for his followers. Jesus was baptized even though he had no sin and required no repentance, which were key aspects of John’s baptismal message. Jesus did this to set a model for us. For Wesley the baptism of Jesus is an example of the obligations that rest on us as Christians for no other reason than Jesus Christ commands us to observe them. If we reject the command, Wesley argues, we should not expect the Holy Spirit.
  • The writer of The Baptism of the Lord (newevangelizers.com) asks his readers to notice that as the Spirit descends upon Jesus, “the Father announces from heaven that this is His beloved Son.”But than straight ahead continues giving the impression that this Voice from the clouds did not tell the truth and gave “a majestic revelation of the Most Holy Trinity, one God in three persons. ” and as such going against all the sayings of Jehovah God and of Jesus himself later in his life when he spoke about his relationship with his heavenly Father.
  • We wonder where Sermo Dei: Baptism of Our Lord (daringlutheran.net) gets it from that the Son of God is incarnate. He does not allow people to question his saying, so this will leave a blank.
    He writes a.o.:
    “By Jesus’ time, prophets of the Lord are seldom seen and heard from – even less so today. The sky tends not to be rent open wide when someone wades in the water. Certainly disembodied voices don’t sound forth from heaven, nor do dove-like Spirits descend in plain sight.”
    Though he seem to recognise the Voice of God or the Logos being able to create or to destroy things he suddenly seem to mix the voice of the Creator with the person of which the Logos gave existence of.
  • Baptism of Christ – unworthy sinners made worthy by Jesus (revpaulhgreenland.wordpress.com)
    judgment is there for those who oppose God’s ways, but fundamentally, God wants to bring us back from sin into His ways. We have the image of the Old Testament prophet, whose job it was to preach judgment and punishment to warn the people of the consequences of their continued sin, but God wants most of all as Ezekiel says, for people to turn and live.
  • Baptism of Our Lord (ijboudreaux.com)
    Father in heaven, at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan you proclaimed him your beloved Son and anointed him with the Holy Spirit.  Grant that all who are baptized into his name may keep the covenant they have made, and boldly confess him as Lord and Savior, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, One God, in glory everlasting.  Amen.
  • A Title You Can’t Wash Off (jaredhillaryruark.wordpress.com)
    We could say a lot of things about baptism because there are billions of Christians and thousands of Christian traditions, so baptism can take on any number of meanings and people think about it in a lot of different ways.
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    John the Baptist, despite his name, doesn’t feel up to the task. He’s already baptized thousands in the River Jordan but when Jesus approaches he says Whoa, whoa. Nope. I’m not baptizing you, you should be baptizing me. The problem seems to be that baptism is for the forgiveness of sins and Jesus doesn’t have sins so why would he be baptized? So John says, no-no-no. You’re the holy one and it makes more sense if you baptize me.You can tell somethings out of place just from their names and titles. John is called the Baptist and they’ll call Jesus a lot of things–Messiah, Christ, Son of God. And you can tell just from the titles that John shouldn’t be baptizing Jesus. Cause you know there are all sorts of Baptists–American baptists and Southern baptists, independent baptists. Larry and Susan the Baptists down the street. But you don’t hear about Joe and Suzy Christ so much. Only Jesus get’s to be called Christ and Christ is quite the title. So John says “I need to be baptized by you.”
  • In those days: some notes (friarmusings.wordpress.com)
    Matthew 3:1 in those days: This is an OT expression that marks the beginning of the new period, not necessarily a precise indication of time (see Mt 13:1; 24:22, 29, 36; 26:29). Here it marks the time-shift from the infancy narrative to the adult Jesus’ appearance.  the desert of Judea: wilderness would perhaps be the better word for modern English. The area is the barren region west of the Dead Sea extending up the Jordan valley.
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    Matthew 3:2 Repent: the biblical idea of repentance involves a willingness to turn one’s life around in the sense of a complete re-orientation. the kingdom of heaven is at hand: “heaven” (literally, “the heavens”) is a substitute for the name “God” that was avoided by devout Jews of the time out of reverence. The expression “the kingdom of heaven” occurs only in the gospel of Matthew. It means the effective rule of God over his people. In its fullness it includes not only human obedience to God’s word, but the triumph of God over physical evils, supremely over death. In the expectation found in Jewish apocalyptic, the kingdom was to be ushered in by a judgment in which sinners would be condemned and perish, an expectation shared by the Baptist. This was modified in Christian understanding where the kingdom was seen as being established in stages, culminating with the parousia of Jesus.
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