When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” – Luke 3:21-22
There is an old saying that predicts everyone will have their fifteen minutes of fame. This might be in a positive sense. It may also be in a negative sense. In either case, the individual is catapulted into the spotlight. What is equally interesting is what happens when that brief time of fame is over. Usually the person’s name is forgotten except as an answer to a trivia question.
Luke’s Gospel provides the account of two individuals. One is John the Baptist. The other is Jesus. In his prime, John was well recognized. People came in droves to see and hear him. This was his time of fame. Because of his popularity many thought he was the Messiah whom God had promised. He wasn’t, and eventually he faded from the scene.
In contrast to John was Jesus. With his baptism, Jesus was brought into the spotlight. What follows demands my undivided attention and trust. Jesus was baptized by John, but not to have his sins forgiven. He was sinless. Neither did Jesus come to John for the gift of faith baptism offers. Jesus was the faithful Son of God the Father. Jesus was baptized to signal the beginning of his service to all people as their Savior. It was his baptism that thrust him into the spotlight of his time of fame.
What is amazing is that Jesus’ fame didn’t fade away. Instead he continued to draw more and more attention to himself. Through his miraculous works, through his powerful preaching, and through his unselfish acts of love and service, he kept himself in front of people.
Jesus did this so people would come to know that he was the Savior God had promised and provided. It is a lesson to which I need to pay careful attention. It is also one I need to trust without compromise. Jesus did everything God promised. Consequently, I can put my trust in him without fear of disappointment.
I can trust Jesus for the faithfulness I lack, because he was perfectly faithful. I can trust Jesus for the forgiveness I need, because he obediently secured it. I can trust Jesus for the help I need, because he is always near. Jesus is the sure and certain answer God provides for all my needs.
Some would argue Jesus’ “fifteen minutes” of fame began and ended the day he was baptized. That is hardly the truth. Certainly his public fame began with his baptism. Still, it continued throughout his life, his death, his resurrection from the grave, and his return to heaven. Because Jesus’ fame and glory has never failed the test of time, I know what is mine: I have the joy and peace of eternal life waiting for me through my glorious Savior.