As soon as Jesus was baptized, he came up out of the water. At that moment the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, who brings me great joy, with him I am well pleased.” (NIV NLT)
Jesus chose to be baptized in order to show those who would follow him the way to begin their discipleship journey. This was the way representatives of the kingdom of God were to launch their ministries. Though Jesus – perfect and sinless – did not need to be “born again”, he taught that all who would seek after God must be “born of the water and the Spirit” John 3:5. You must be born again. And His water baptism showed how by example.
For Jesus – God as a man – to submit to any human ritual was an act of humility. Over and over again the Son of God humbled himself. At the river Jordan he humbled himself to let John baptize him in the river.
It was at this moment of obedience to the Divine Directive that the heavens opened up and declared to all: “This is my beloved Son with whom I am delighted and well pleased.”
Boom! Validation and Affirmation with a capital V and A.
There’s just nothing better than hearing the very voice of God say – “I’m happy with what you’re doing. Your choices please me.” Imagine what that would feel like if it was you! That would be exhilarating!
Of course, any of us can choose to act in such a spirit of obedience that the Lord would respond similarly. Probably not with an audible voice from heaven, but still, just to know that you have the pleasure of God in your corner, that’s a powerful thing.
I really like to use this word “beloved”, even if seems to be a bit old-fashioned. It means “adored, much loved, cherished, treasured, prized, highly regarded, admired, esteemed”.
Those are good sentiments I hope to impart.
For my wife, when addressing her I stretch it out to all three syllables, “My Be-love-ed”.
To my son, when we’re on the phone, it’s the two-syllable version, “Hello beloved son!”
I used to write emails to my choir my salutation frequently would be “Hey there Beloved Choir Friends!
My friend, if you’re walking with Jesus, know that you are beloved. Feel His affirmation. God will always validate those that fully obey Him.
Remember God’s love for you is unconditional, His love never fails, He never gives up on you, BUT He is “well pleased and delighted” – which is even better – when you chose to “trust and obey” and walk in his ways!
Let’s pray, from Ephesians 3:16-21
Father thank you for your love and your son. Our prayers join the intercession of heaven for all who are listening, so now “16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Daily Worship Devotionals is a 5-minute podcast dedicated to studying the Word of God and hearing the voice of the Holy Spirit. Currently, we are following the Christian year calendar as our framework. We’re in the season of Epiphany – the Season of Light and exploring the early life of Christ.