|Date||Early 1st century AD|
|Location||Present-day Al-Maghtas, Jordan|
|Participants||Jesus, John the Baptist|
The baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist is a major event in the life of Jesus which is described in the three synoptic Gospels of the New Testament (Matthew, Mark and Luke), [lower-alpha 1] in which John ritually purified Jesus with water. It is considered to have taken place at Al-Maghtas (also called Bethany Beyond the Jordan), today located in Jordan.
Modern biblical scholars view the baptism of Jesus as a historical event to which a high degree of certainty can be assigned.      Along with the crucifixion of Jesus, biblical scholars view it as one of the two historically certain facts about him, and often use it as the starting point for the study of the historical Jesus. 
The baptism is one of the events in the narrative of the life of Jesus in the canonical Gospels; others include the Transfiguration, Crucifixion, Resurrection, and Ascension.   Most Christian denominations view the baptism of Jesus as an important event and a basis for the Christian rite of baptism (see also Acts 19:1–7).  In Eastern Christianity, Jesus' baptism is commemorated on 6 January (the Julian calendar date of which corresponds to 19 January on the Gregorian calendar), the feast of Epiphany.  In the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, the Lutheran Churches and some other Western denominations, it is recalled on a day within the following week, the feast of the baptism of the Lord. In Roman Catholicism, the baptism of Jesus is one of the Luminous Mysteries sometimes added to the Rosary. It is a Trinitarian feast in the Eastern Orthodox Churches.
Mark, Matthew, and Luke depict the baptism in parallel passages. In all three gospels, the Holy Spirit is depicted as descending upon Jesus immediately after his baptism accompanied by a voice from Heaven, but the accounts of Luke and Mark record the voice as addressing Jesus by saying "You are my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased", while in Matthew the voice states "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matthew 3:13–17;  Mark 1:9–11;  Luke 3:21–23).    
After the baptism, the Synoptic gospels describe the temptation of Jesus, where Jesus withdrew to the Judean desert to fast for forty days and nights.
Matthew's account is unique in several respects: He asserts that Jesus left Galilee for the purpose of being baptized by John (πρὸς τὸν Ἰωάννην τοῦ βαπτισθῆναι ὑπ’ αὐτοῦ). He includes a conversation between John and Jesus: In v. 14, John said: "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?" Nevertheless, Jesus convinces John to baptize him "to fulfill all righteousness" (v. 15).   Matthew records that the voice from heaven says "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased", but does not indicate who is addressed.
Mark's account is roughly parallel to that of Matthew, except for Matthew 3:14–15 describing John's initial reluctance and eventual consent to baptize Jesus, which is not described by Mark. Mark uses an unusual word for the opening of the heavens, σχιζομένους, schizomenous, which means "tearing" or "ripping" (Mark 1:10). It forms a verbal thread (Leitwortstil) with the rending (ἐσχίσθη, eschisthē) of the Temple veil in Mark 15:38, inviting comparison between the two episodes. 
Luke 1 begins with the birth of John the Baptist, heralded to his father Zacharias by the angel Gabriel. Six months later Gabriel appears to the Virgin Mary with an announcement of the birth of Jesus, at the Annunciation. At the same, Gabriel also announces to Mary the coming birth of John the Baptist, to her kinswoman Elizabeth, who is the wife of Zacharias. Mary immediately sets out to visit her kinswoman Elizabeth, and stays with her until John's birth. Luke strongly contrasts the reactions of Zacharias and Mary to these two respective births; and the lives of John and Jesus are intertwined.
Luke uniquely depicts John as showing public kindness to tax collectors and encouraging the giving of alms to the poor (as in Luke 3:11).  Luke records that Jesus was praying when Heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him. Luke clarifies that the spirit descended in the "bodily form" of a dove, as opposed to merely "descending like" a dove. In Acts 10:37–38,  the ministry of Jesus is described as following "the baptism which John preached". 
In John 1:29–33,  rather than a direct narrative, John the Baptist bears witness to the spirit descending like a dove.  
The Gospel of John (John 1:28)  specifies "Bethabara beyond Jordan", i.e., Bethany in Perea as the location where John was baptizing when Jesus began choosing disciples, and in John 3:23  there is mention of further baptisms in Ænon "because there was much water there".  
John 1:35–37  narrates an encounter, between Jesus and two of his future disciples, who were then disciples of John the Baptist.   The episode in John 1:35–37  forms the start of the relationship between Jesus and his future disciples. When John the Baptist called Jesus the Lamb of God, the "two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus".    One of the disciples is named Andrew, but the other remains unnamed, and Raymond E. Brown raises the question of his being the author of the Gospel of John himself.   In the Gospel of John, the disciples follow Jesus thereafter, and bring other disciples to him, and Acts 18:24–19:6  portrays the disciples of John as eventually merging with the followers of Jesus.  
According to the non-canonical Gospel of the Nazarenes, the idea of being baptized by John came from the mother and brothers of Jesus, and Jesus himself, originally opposed, reluctantly accepted it.  Benjamin Urrutia avers that this version is supported by the criterion of embarrassment, since followers of Jesus would not have invented an episode in which Jesus changes his mind and comes to accept someone else's plan. Plus, the story came from the community that included the family of Jesus, who would have guaranteed the authenticity of the narrative. 
The Gospel of John (John 1:28)  states that John was baptising in "Bethany Beyond the Jordan".   generally considered to be the town of Bethany, also called Bethabara in Perea, on the eastern bank of the Jordan river, near Jericho.  In the 3rd century Origen, who moved to the area from Alexandria, suggested Bethabara as the location.  In the 4th century, Eusebius of Caesarea stated that the location was on the west bank of the Jordan, and following him, the early Byzantine Madaba Map shows Bethabara as (Βέθαβαρά). 
The biblical baptising is related to springs and a Wadi (al-Kharrar) close to the Eastern site of the Jordan River,  not the Jordan itself.  The pilgrimage sites, important for both Christians and Jews have shifted place during history. The site of Al-Maghtas (baptism, or immersion in Arabic) on the East side of the River in Jordan has been deemed the earliest place of worship. This site was found following UNESCO-sponsored excavations.  Al-Maghtas was visited by Pope John Paul II in March 2000, and he said: "In my mind I see Jesus coming to the waters of the river Jordan not far from here to be baptized by John the Baptist".  The Muslim conquest put an end to the Byzantine buildings on the east bank of the Jordan River, the later reverence took place just across the river in the West Bank at Qasr el Yahud.  The valley around the Dead Sea, which the Jordan River flows into from the North, is also the lowest place on planet Earth. 
The baptism of Jesus is generally considered as the start of his ministry, shortly after the start of the ministry of John the Baptist.    Luke 3:1–2  states that:  
In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea [...] the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
There are two approaches to determining when the reign of Tiberius Caesar started.  The traditional approach is that of assuming that the reign of Tiberius started when he became co-regent in 11 AD, placing the start of the ministry of John the Baptist around 26 AD. However, some scholars assume it to be upon the death of his predecessor Augustus Caesar in 14 AD, implying that the ministry of John the Baptist began in 29 AD. 
The generally assumed dates for the start of the ministry of John the Baptist based on this reference in the Gospel of Luke are about 28–29 AD, with the ministry of Jesus with his baptism following it shortly thereafter.     
Most nearly all scholars believe that John the Baptist performed a baptism on Jesus, and view it as a historical event to which a high degree of certainty can be assigned.     James Dunn states that the historicity of the baptism and crucifixion of Jesus "command almost universal assent".  Dunn states that these two facts "rank so high on the 'almost impossible to doubt or deny' scale of historical facts" that they are often the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus.  John Dominic Crossan states that it is historically certain that Jesus was baptised by John in the Jordan. 
In the Antiquities of the Jews (18.5.2) 1st-century historian Flavius Josephus also wrote about John the Baptist and his eventual death in Perea.  
The existence of John the Baptist within the same time frame as Jesus, and his eventual execution by Herod Antipas, is attested to by 1st-century historian Flavius Josephus and the overwhelming majority of modern scholars view Josephus' accounts of the activities of John the Baptist as authentic.   Josephus establishes a key connection between the historical events he recorded and specific episodes that appear in the gospels.  The reference in the Antiquities of the Jews by Josephus to John's popularity among the crowds (Antiquities 18.5.2) and how he preached his baptism is considered a reliable historical datum.   Unlike the gospels, Josephus does not relate John and Jesus, and does not state that John's baptisms were for the remission of sins.    However, almost all modern scholars consider the Josephus passage on John to be authentic in its entirety and view the variations between Josephus and the gospels as indications that the Josephus passages are authentic, for a Christian interpolator would have made them correspond to the Christian traditions.  
One of the arguments in favour of the historicity of the baptism of Jesus by John is that it is a story which the early Christian Church would have never wanted to invent, typically referred to as the criterion of embarrassment in historical analysis.    Based on this criterion, given that John baptised for the remission of sins, and Jesus was viewed as without sin, the invention of this story would have served no purpose, and would have been an embarrassment given that it positioned John above Jesus.    The Gospel of Matthew attempts to offset this problem by having John feel unworthy to baptise Jesus and Jesus giving him permission to do so in Matthew 3:14–15.  
The gospels are not the only references to the baptisms performed by John. In Acts of the Apostles, Peter refers to how the ministry of Jesus followed "the baptism which John preached".   Another argument supporting the historicity of the baptism is that multiple accounts refer to it, usually called the criterion of multiple attestation.  Technically, multiple attestation does not guarantee authenticity, but only determines antiquity.  However, for most scholars, together with the criterion of embarrassment it lends credibility to the baptism of Jesus by John being a historical event.    
Justus Knecht answers the question of why Jesus let himself be baptized by John:
1. He did not require to do penance, because He was without sin; but He had taken our sins upon Him to atone for them; therefore He humbled Himself, placed Himself on a level with sinners, and obediently subjected Himself to be baptized, as He had submitted before to be circumcised, and presented in the Temple. 2. He gave us thereby a lesson in humility and obedience, and has taught us that we too must fulfil all justice, i. e. promptly obey all the ordinances of God. 3. By His baptism He sanctified water, and gave to it the power of purifying and sanctifying the soul of man. In other words, He instituted the Sacrament of Baptism by which, under the outward sign of water, we receive remission of our sins. 
He also notes that, "The opening of heaven signified that Heaven, which had been closed to man since the Fall, was now once more opened by Jesus."
Roger Baxter reflects on Christ's baptism in his Meditations:
The first act of Christ's public life was to present Himself to be baptized by His precursor, to teach us that those who are employed in the work of God should carry with them a pure and uncorrupted heart. He therefore takes leave of His divine Mother, who, although she grieved at the absence of such a Son, rejoiced that the redemption of Israel was at hand. He takes a long journey to the Baptist. The Lord goes to the servant to be baptized by him as a common sinner, among publicans and soldiers and the lowest order of the vulgar. Admire the humility of the Son of God, and convince yourself that humility is the best preparation for great works. 
While the gospel of Luke is explicit about the Spirit of God descending in the shape of a dove, the wording of Matthew is vague enough that it could be interpreted only to suggest that the descent was in the style of a dove. Although a variety of symbolisms were attached to doves at the time these passages were written, the dove imagery has become a well known symbol for the Holy Spirit in Christian art.   Depictions of the baptismal scene typically show the sky opening and the Holy Spirit descending as a dove towards Jesus. 
Artists usually tried to show the whole body of Christ as he stood in the water, which could give them difficulties. The reasonably coherent 6th-century mosaic image in the Arian Baptistry, Ravenna, with the water hemmed in by two banks, when used in many generations of copies in Western Europe, by artists unskilled in depicting visual recession, led to images like that in the Psalter of Eleanor of Aquitaine, where there appears to be a standing mound of water.
At least one attendant archangel, holding Christ's robe, and often another with a towel, became usual in medieval images.
The reformer Martin Luther wrote a hymn about baptism, based on biblical accounts about the baptism of Jesus, "Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam" (1541). It is the basis for a cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach, Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam, BWV 7 , first performed on 24 June 1724.
|Events in the|
| Life of Jesus |
according to the canonical gospels
|Portals: Christianity Bible|
It is traditionally celebrated on the Sunday after Epiphany, oscillating between January 7 and 13, however, different episcopal conferences celebrate it in the same way, but the difference is that this party is only celebrated on the Sunday after Epiphany, oscillating between the 9 and on January 13, if Christmas falls on Monday, Holy Family on December 31, the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God on Monday, this feast will be celebrated on Monday, 8 January and if Christmas falls on Sunday, the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God on Sunday, this feast happens to be celebrated on Monday, January 9.
The Gospel of Mark is the second of the four canonical gospels and of the three synoptic Gospels. It tells of the ministry of Jesus from his baptism by John the Baptist to his death, burial, and the discovery of his empty tomb. There is no miraculous birth or doctrine of divine pre-existence, nor, in the original ending, any post-resurrection appearances of Jesus. It portrays Jesus as a teacher, an exorcist, a healer, and a miracle worker. He refers to himself as the Son of Man. He is called the Son of God, but keeps his messianic nature secret; even his disciples fail to understand him. All this is in keeping with Christian interpretation of prophecy, which is believed to foretell the fate of the messiah as suffering servant. The gospel ends, in its original version, with the discovery of the empty tomb, a promise to meet again in Galilee, and an unheeded instruction to spread the good news of the Resurrection of Jesus.
John the Baptist was a Roman born Judaean mission preacher active in the area of the Jordan River in the early 1st century AD. He is also known as John the Forerunner in Christianity, John the Immerser in some Baptist Christian traditions, and Prophet Yahya in Islam. He is sometimes alternatively referred to as John the Baptiser.
Aenon, distinguished as Aenon near Salim, is the site mentioned by the Gospel of John as one of the places where John was baptising people, after baptizing Jesus in Bethany-beyond-the-Jordan.
The Transfiguration of Jesus is an event described in the New Testament, where Jesus is transfigured and becomes radiant in glory upon a mountain. The Synoptic Gospels recount the occasion, and the Second Epistle of Peter also refers to it.
Herod Antipas, was a 1st-century ruler of Galilee and Perea, who bore the title of tetrarch and is referred to as both "Herod the Tetrarch" and "King Herod" in the New Testament, although he never held the title of king. He was a son of Herod the Great and a grandson of Antipater the Idumaean. He is widely known today for accounts in the New Testament of his role in events that led to the executions of John the Baptist and Jesus of Nazareth.
Jesus is called the Son of God in the Bible's New Testament, and in mainstream Christian denominations he is God the Son, the second Person in the Trinity. He is believed to be the Jewish messiah who is prophesied in the Hebrew Bible, which is called the Old Testament in Christianity. Through his crucifixion and subsequent resurrection, God offered humans salvation and eternal life, that Jesus died to atone for sin to make humanity right with God.
The question of whether Jesus historically existed is part of the study undertaken in the quest for the historical Jesus and the scholarly reconstructions of his life. Virtually all scholars of antiquity accept that Jesus was a historical figure and dismiss denials of his existence as a fringe theory, while many details like his alleged miracles and theological significance are subject to debate.
A chronology of Jesus aims to establish a timeline for the events of the life of Jesus. Scholars have correlated Jewish and Greco-Roman documents and astronomical calendars with the New Testament accounts to estimate dates for the major events in Jesus's life.
Jesus, also referred to as Jesus Christ or Jesus of Nazareth, was a first-century Jewish preacher and religious leader; he is the central figure of Christianity, the world's largest religion. Most Christians believe he is the incarnation of God the Son and the awaited Messiah prophesied in the Hebrew Bible.
The life of Jesus in the New Testament is primarily outlined in the four canonical gospels, which includes his genealogy and nativity, public ministry, passion, prophecy, resurrection and ascension. Other parts of the New Testament – such as the Pauline epistles which were likely written within 20 to 30 years of each other, and which include references to key episodes in the life of Jesus, such as the Last Supper, and the Acts of the Apostles, which includes more references to the Ascension episode than the canonical gospels also expound upon the life of Jesus. In addition to these biblical texts, there are extra-biblical texts that Christians believe make reference to certain events in the life of Jesus, such as Josephus on Jesus and Tacitus on Christ.
Matthew 3 is the third chapter of the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament. It is the first chapter dealing with the ministry of Jesus, with events taking place some three decades after the close of the infancy narrative related in the previous two chapters. The focus of this chapter is on the preaching of John the Baptist and the Baptism of Jesus.
Matthew 3:13 is the thirteenth verse of the third chapter of the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament. The verse introduces the section describing the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist.
Mark 1 is the first chapter of the Gospel of Mark in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. It recounts the proclamation of John the Baptist, the baptism of Jesus Christ, his temptations and the beginning of his ministry in Galilee.
The New Testament narrative of the life of Jesus refers to a number of locations in the Holy Land and a Flight into Egypt. In these accounts the principal locations for the ministry of Jesus were Galilee and Judea, with activities also taking place in surrounding areas such as Perea and Samaria.
The ministry of Jesus, in the canonical gospels, begins with his baptism in the countryside of Roman Judea and Transjordan, near the River Jordan by John the Baptist, and ends in Jerusalem, following the Last Supper with his disciples. The Gospel of Luke states that Jesus was "about 30 years of age" at the start of his ministry. A chronology of Jesus typically sets the date of the start of his ministry at 11 September 26 AD; others have estimated at around AD 27–29 and the end in the range AD 30–36.
The Return of Jesus to Galilee is an episode in the life of Jesus which appears in three of the Canonical Gospels: Matthew 4:12, Mark 1:14 and John 4:1–3, 4:43–45. It relates the return of Jesus to Galilee upon the imprisonment of John the Baptist.
The calling of the disciples is a key episode in the life of Jesus in the New Testament. It appears in Matthew 4:18–22, Mark 1:16-20 and Luke 5:1–11 on the Sea of Galilee. John 1:35–51 reports the first encounter with two of the disciples a little earlier in the presence of John the Baptist. Particularly in the Gospel of Mark, the beginning of the Ministry of Jesus and the call of the first disciples are inseparable.
Baptism has been part of Christianity from the start, as shown by the many mentions in the Acts of the Apostles and the Pauline epistles.
For the majority of Christian denominations, the Holy Spirit, or Holy Ghost, is believed to be the third person of the Trinity, a Triune God manifested as God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, each entity itself being God. Nontrinitarian Christians, who reject the doctrine of the Trinity, differ significantly from mainstream Christianity in their beliefs about the Holy Spirit. In Christian theology, pneumatology is the study of the Holy Spirit. Due to Christianity's historical relationship with Judaism, theologians often identify the Holy Spirit with the concept of the Ruach Hakodesh in Jewish scripture, on the theory that Jesus was expanding upon these Jewish concepts. Similar names, and ideas, include the Ruach Elohim, Ruach YHWH, and the Ruach Hakodesh. In the New Testament it is identified with the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of Truth, the Paraclete and the Holy Spirit.
Al-Maghtas, officially known as Baptism Site "Bethany Beyond the Jordan", is an archaeological World Heritage site in Jordan, on the east bank of the Jordan River, considered to be the original location of the Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist and venerated as such since at least the Byzantine period. The place has also been referred to as Bethabara and historically Bethany.