Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself…
Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?” But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
Jesus fulfilled “all righteousness.” No small part of this righteousness is His flawless humility. His was a perfect portrait of humility in the flesh… not just a picture, He is the definition of humility.
We might not have considered His baptism one more mark of His humility, yet certainly it was. Historically and currently, when one of great prominence or royalty is to be baptized they send for the minister to come to them for the ceremony. Yet the King of Kings, Jesus, did not stand on His position or dignity and send for John. Instead He came. He came to be baptized of the lowly prophet-preacher in the muddy waters of the Jordan.
The spotless Lamb-of-God, without sin… why did He come to be baptized? Was not baptism for sinners? Only those who acknowledged their sin came to the waters of baptism. Jesus had no sin.
Ah, remember it is our Savior Jesus (Isa. 53:12; Mark 15:28; Luke 22:37) who was to be “numbered with the transgressors.” Baptism for Jesus was an act by which He consented to take His place among sinners. He was identifying with His people. Baptism was in type or figure, what He would actually do for them on the torturous Cross and then the reality of the Resurrection— He would actually die and rise again!
From J.B. Phillips Ephesians 2:4-9—
“But even though we were dead in our sins God, who is rich in mercy, because of the great love He had for us, gave us life together with Christ—it is, remember, by grace and not be achievement that you are saved—and has lifted us right out of the old life to take our place with Him in Christ Jesus in the Heavens. Thus, He shows for all time the tremendous generosity of the grace and kindness He has expressed towards us in Christ Jesus. It was nothing you could or did achieve—it was God’s gift of grace which saved you.”
So that you and I could have a Savior, Christ died for our sins, and rose from the grave! That is good news… that is the gospel and it is generous, gracious and glorious!