Jesus Baptism

by Nosferatu 16 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • ezekiel3

    Even the WTS says it was just for show:

    *** w85 9/15 p. 8 Jesus? Baptism ***

    Why is it right for Jesus to be baptized? Because Jesus? baptism is a symbol, not of repentance for sins, but of his presenting himself to do the will of his Father. Jesus was a carpenter, but now the time has come for him to begin the ministry that God sent him to earth to perform.

    *** wt chap. 12 pp. 111-112 The Meaning of Your Baptism ***

    Among those who came to John to be baptized was Jesus himself. But why? Knowing that Jesus had no sins to confess, John said: "I am the one needing to be baptized by you, and are you coming to me?" But Jesus? baptism was to symbolize something different. So Jesus replied: "Let it be, this time, for in that way it is suitable for us to carry out all that is righteous." (Matthew 3:13-15) Because Jesus was without sin, his baptism did not symbolize repentance over sin; nor did he need to dedicate himself to God, since he was a member of a nation already dedicated to Jehovah. Rather, his baptism at 30 years of age was unique to him, and it symbolized the presenting of himself to his heavenly Father to do His further will. (WTS Italics)

  • El blanko
    El blanko

    Maybe as humans we need an objective example to firm a concept within our minds?

  • Midget-Sasquatch


    Nice job on laying out the different ways the NT Gospels portray the link between Jesus and John's movements. I think it strongly suggests rivalry between the two groups and how proto-orthodox christians tried to convince the other side to join them/prove they were superior.

    To anyone:

    Were Jesus and his early followers a splinter group from John's movement ? Josephus (though not the most accurate historian) did say the Baptist was very popular - but said no such thing about the Christians.

  • Leolaia

    Midget....Well, just look at how Mark 1:3 and the other gospels make John the Baptist quote from Isaiah 40:3: "A voice of one calling in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.' " This attribution is likely a historical kernal because John the Baptist was likely an Essene and this scripture was a favorite of the Essenes, who believed was being fulfilled in their desert community, referring to their "way of righteousness" practiced in the desert. The gospel writers however alter the meaning of this application and instead subordinate John as a preparer of Jesus, and John goes the furthest in making John submissive to Jesus (1:17).

  • tata
    So, why did Jesus have to be baptized? Simply so that Christianity could annex a powerful ritual from paganism

    This made me remember: "monkey see monkey do"

  • Narkissos
    Were Jesus and his early followers a splinter group from John's movement ?

    Some "judeo-Christians" obviously were, as the positive reference to John in the Gospels indicates (Matthew 11:11 // Luke 7:28 // Thomas 46).

    About Jesus, the main problem imo is that he is actually much less documented than John as a historical character.

    Perhaps you'll enjoy Robert M. Price's half-serious suggestion on (as I did).

  • Midget-Sasquatch


    I?m with you on there being a link with the Essenes. They had some interesting ways of applying OT prophecies to themselves didn?t they? Almost WTS like. Another thing I find persuasive is that in their Manual of Discipline there was a passage on how their ritual of baptism was specifically for remission of sins, and an initiation that set themselves onto the path of salvation....much like John?s baptism and that of the early Christians. The Gospels must have been addressing some bit of actual history.


    Thanks for that link to Price?s essay. I enjoyed that thought experiment of his. I never gave much thought to that notion of Jesus being the ressurrected baptist. Interesting idea.Christ a mythical figure created by some of John?s followers after his death.....Hmmmm. Well whether it was John's followers or followers of an actual man Jesus, that got the buzz going on in Palestine, we can thank Paul for alot of the other mythology that developed.


    Thank you for the great thread topic. I never know what curiosities can end up being clues or fossils of some reworked history. I appreciate all the input.

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