Reflections for The Baptism of Jesus: I'm sorry this blog post is late, but it's still the Season of Epiphany. On Sunday January 12, 2020, we celebrated the Baptism of Jesus. The Baptism of Jesus always follows the Feast of the Epiphany aka the Visitation of the Wise Men aka Magi to the Christ Child. The Feast of Epiphany is always January 6th and the Baptism of Jesus is always the Sunday afterwards in Western Christianity. Eastern Christianity celebrates the Baptism of Jesus on January 6th.
Jesus wanted to set a good example for His Disciples and for us. Even though Jesus did not need water Baptism to be saved, as we do, since He is equally God with the Father Yahweh and the Holy Spirit, Jesus was making the statement, that water Baptism is so important, that Jesus the Messiah "Himself" was willing to experience it. The Baptism of Jesus foreshadowed His Death on the True Cross and His Resurrection from the Dead and St. Paul later wrote in Romans Chapter 6 about water Baptism connecting Baptized and believing Christians to the Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Jesus. Water Baptism is Holy Baptism, because Jesus delivers the Salvation, Which He won on the True Cross to all Christians, who experience Holy Baptism. Holy Baptism is Trinitarian Baptism, because just as Yahweh and the Holy Spirit came to Jesus' Baptism and They come to each Christian's Holy Baptism today along with Jesus.
Let us read Matthew Chapter 3:
"1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, 2 And saying, 'Repent ye: for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.' 3 For this is he, that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias (Isaiah), saying, 'The voice of one crying in the wilderness, 'Prepare ye the Way of the Lord, make His Paths straight.'' 4 And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. 5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan, 6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his Baptism, he said unto them, 'O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance: 9 And think not to say within yourselves, 'We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree, which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but He, That cometh after me, is mightier than I, Whose Shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: 12 Whose Fan is in His Hand, and He will throughly purge His Floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.'
13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14 But John forbad Him, saying, 'I have need to be baptized of Thee, and comest Thou to me?' 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, 'Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness.' Then he suffered Him. 16 And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a Dove, and lighting upon Him: 17 And lo a Voice from Heaven, saying, 'This is My beloved Son, in Whom I AM well pleased'" (KJV 1611).
February 2020 Book Signings:
1. I'll be having a book signing at the Eastgate Hallmark Store in Lima, Ohio on Saturday February 1, 2020 from 11 AM to 1 PM.
2. I'll be having a book signing at the Elm Street Hallmark Store in Lima, Ohio on Saturday February 8, 2020 from 11 AM to 1 PM.
March 2020 Book Signings:
1. I'll be having a book signing at the Jen's Furniture and Collectible in St. Marys, Ohio on Saturday March 7, 2020 from 11 AM to 3 PM.
2. I'll be having a book signing at the 2020 Waynesfield Winterfest held at Waynesfield-Goshen High School in Waynesfield, Ohio on Saturday March 14, 2020. The time is TBA.
April 2020 Book Signing(s):
1. I'll be having a book signing at the 2020 Arts Place Literature Festival held in Dicke Hall at Wright State Lake Campus in Celina, Ohio on Saturday April 18, 2020 from 9 AM to noon.
My Green Irish Angel Statues: My Green Irish Angel Statues are really cute! They are only $1 each and they make great gifts. I have three kinds: 1. Cross-Bearing Angels, 2. Praying Angels, and 3. Angels Holding Butterflies. I like the Cross-Bearing Angels the best, because they are carrying Crosses. Each one bearing a Cross reminds us, that Jesus died on the True Cross to save every single person from death, Hell, Satan, Satan's Demons, Original Sin from Adam and Eve, and their personal sins. They're available exclusively at Jen's Furniture and Collectibles (JFC) on the corner High Street and Chestnut Street in between Circle K Gas Station and Zion Lutheran Church (NALC) in St. Marys, Ohio.
Stores Carrying My Books: My books, which I’ve written and published, are also available at the following stores: Brunner News Agency on Flanders Avenue in Lima, Ohio, Jen’s Furniture and Collectibles (JFC) on High Street in St. Marys, Ohio, The Menagerie at 1178 Indiana Avenue in the St. Marys Business Complex in St. Marys, Ohio, Readmore Hallmark Stores out at Eastgate Plaza and on Elm Street in Lima, Ohio, Wagner’s IGA Grocery Store in Minster, Ohio, and in the Shop section of my website ohioirishlutheranpress.com .
Thank you and Happy Epiphany!
James W. O’Flannery, President and Founder of Ohio Irish Lutheran Press (OIL Press)