Read Matthew 3:13-17
In the first century, many came to John to be baptized. Their baptism served as a statement of their personal repentance. Meanwhile, Jesus, being the perfect Son of God, never sinned and did not need to repent. It is no wonder John hesitated about baptizing Him! Still, Jesus allowed it as a demonstration of His commitment to the righteous desires of God and, perhaps, as a precursor to His future identification with the sins of men and women.
But, our focus today is on the audio-visual experience that followed His baptism. As Jesus came up out of the water, the Spirit of God descended like a dove and a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased (Matt. 3:17).” The baptism of Jesus, you see, is one of the clearest demonstrations of the trinity.
What do we mean when we say “trinity”? If we add a letter to the word, we gain some insight…tri-unity. One God, three persons. This biblical truth is summarized in our church Bylaws: “There is one, and only one, true God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He is the Creator and Lord of all, existing eternally in three persons, never less and never more – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”
We worship and serve one God. That’s right, we are monotheists. Moses made it clear that “the Lord our God is one… (Deut. 6:4).” He is not one among many. There is no one who rivals Him in power and authority. No wonder He warns us about having any other gods before Him (Ex. 20:3). He and He alone is deserving of our concentrated devotion and service.
This one God has existed from eternity past as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Thus, we are not surprised to read how the Bible elaborates, for example, on the opening description of creation: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Gen. 1:1). In the New Testament, we discover that it was Jesus who played a key role in that creative process (Jn. 1:10; Col. 1:15, 16; Heb. 1:1, 2). Meanwhile, the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the earth as the creation process unfolded (Gen. 1:2).
This one God existing eternally as three persons is not only responsible for creation, He is the One capable of making you and me into New Creations. And He is the One deserving of our unwavering fidelity.