What did baptism mean for Jesus? It didn't mean that the Father would keep him out of trouble. He found that out even before he had a chance to dry off! It didn't even mean that things would work out just the way he had planned. No it seems to me that what Jesus' baptism meant to him was that when he found himself in trouble, he wouldn't find himself alone. It meant that even when things didn't go his way, he would still have the Father's blessing and the Spirit's company.
And isn't that what his baptism means to us too? Unlike John's baptism, Jesus' baptism means that we are not alone in the wilderness. It means that God's love for us doesn't depend upon us. It means that God's grace doesn't wash off. The baptism of Jesus means that whenever we find ourselves in a hole, we can be sure that in the hole he goes.
Whenever Martin Luther found himself ready to give up, whenever worry for his own life and the life of the Church he loved overwhelmed him, it is said that he would touch his forehead and say to himself: “Remember Martin, you have been baptised." Here on the other side of Christmas, that sounds like good advice. That sounds like good news. Let us also touch our foreheads and remember that we have been baptised.
And on this Baptism of the Lord Sunday, let us also remember that Jesus was baptised too. He was baptised with us. He was baptised for us, baptised in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
Your Brother, in Christ, Mike Simpson.