Scripture reading for July 20th: 2nd Chronicles 19-20, 2nd Kings 1, Psalm 20, Matthew 3
Matthew 3:13-17 “Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented. And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on Him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is My Beloved Son, with Whom I am well pleased.””
Matthew recorded the story of Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan river by John the Baptist. John humbly recognized that Jesus was His Lord and should be baptizing him. John knew that Jesus would baptize His followers with the Holy Spirit and fire and warned people to prepare their hearts in repentance. But Jesus was fulfilling His Father’s instructions by identifying with sinful man’s need of cleansing by being baptized Himself in preparation for the infilling of the Holy Spirit. After the Spirit descended on Jesus from an open heaven, His Father spoke in declaration: “This is My Beloved Son, with Whom I am well pleased.” As triumphant believers, we will hear a similar declaration at the fullness of our salvation: “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much. Enter into the joys of the Master.” Matthew 25:21, 23
Psalm 20:6-7 “Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer Him from His holy heaven with the saving might of His right Hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we will trust in the Name of the Lord our God.”
Prayer: Father God, I believe Your great declaration concerning Jesus Christ. I thank You for Your plan of salvation and cleansing us from sin pictured in the baptism of Jesus Christ. As Jesus went under the water, signifying dying for our sins, He then came up out of the water, signifying His resurrection and the completion of our salvation. By faith in Jesus Christ I know I am Your child and I await hearing Your declaration over my life at the resurrection.
2nd Chronicles 20:20 “And they rose early in the morning and went out into the wilderness of Tekoa. And when they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem! Believe in the Lord your God, and you will be established; believe His prophets and you will succeed.”