7 years ago today I was ordained to the Holy Priesthood in Santa Fe, NM. I wasn’t going to say anything about it. I was going to simply blog about Theophany and quote the scripture (see below), and quote the song we sing during the service (see below), and put up the icon of Christ’s Baptism (see right). Because if I mention my ordination, I will feel compelled to add something personal. Here we go. The question I am asking myself this morning: “Why do I continue to wrestled with God so much?” I am sometimes like a little kid trying to wiggle out of the winter coat his parents have put on him. Sometimes I love the coat and sometimes I do not. But there is always some wiggling going on. That’s the truth.
In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens opened and the Spirit descending upon him like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, “Thou art my beloved Son; with thee I am well pleased.” The Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. And he was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered to him. Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel.” Mark 1: 9-15
The Orthodoxy Church believes that in Baptism we put on Christ. We are buried with Christ in His death and raised up with Him in His glorious Resurrection. We are baptized for the remission of sins and raised up to new life. When Christ, who is without sin, was Baptized by John in the Jordan it was not He who was changed. His Baptism purified the waters!
When Thou, O Lord were baptized in the Jordan the worship of the Trinity was made manifest. For the voice of the Father bore witness to Thee calling Thee His beloved Son. And the Spirit, in the form of a dove, confirmed the truthfulness of His word. O Christ, our God, Who hast revealed Thyself and has enlightened the world, glory to Thee! – Troparia for Theophany