Sunday, January 12, 2020

The Baptism of Christ and Other Epiphanies

We celebrate the Baptism of Christ today and find an epiphany, God is a trinity of persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. "This is my beloved son," says the Father as Christ rises from the Jordan and the Spirit, like a dove, rests upon him. But what of the baptism?

Jesus, taking sinful humanity on himself descends into the waters only to rise again to the acclaim of the Father, and the heavens are opened to him and the humanity he has assumed. We will see this again as our Lord descends to the dead from Golgotha and rises from the tomb at Easter. So we find another epiphany, Jesus' baptism at the outset of his ministry describes its salvific action. 

No wonder, then, that the Spirit rests on him like the dove over the waters of creation or Noah's dove flying over the flood to dry land. Jesus is the Spirit anointed Messiah who recreates humanity through his passion, death and resurrection, the dry ground in whom we find entry to paradise.

All well and good, but the epiphanies weren't over. I got back to the Compound to find Christmas decorations being taken down and new decorations being put up. There they were, snowperson statues with owls on every table of the church hall. Gifte Shoppe snowperson centerpieces. But why, for what?

"I don't even like snowpersons," said the exhausted tablepiece decorator responsible for these wintry idols. "Why don't you shoot them then," I suggested, "Do you have a gun? No? Don't worry, I've got plenty, bullets too. You can borrow them." She declined, "But I like doing it, parson!" 

The snowpersons and their owls remain, as does the great mystery  and Feast of the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan.

God bless,



drjim said...

Lovely sermon.

Thank you, Parson.

Dad of Six said...

We keep some of our Christmas decorations up until the Presentation on February 2nd. We had our Christmas Party yesterday. Great turnout despite the chilly Michigan air.

LSP said...

Thanks, drjim, I appreciate it.

LSP said...

That's an old tradition, Dad, and a good one. We tend to take it all down shortly after Epiphany, but I see the logic in Feb 2.