Before commencing on today’s topic, I would like to say that if you missed any of the sections covering the Gospel of Mark, I have now published the full transcript of all the posts on my website. If you would like to read or download a copy you can find it by clicking this link.
Here we see the changeover of the ministry. John the Baptist comes to the end of his course and Jesus commences his ministry. We see here that Herod the Tetrarch imprisons John on behalf of his wife Herodias. Herod had taken her as wife which he was not permitted to do under the law for she was married to his brother. Herodias thus held a grudge against John and sought any opportunity to oppose him.
On the other hand though we see that Jesus now begins his ministry. Jesus was baptised in the Jordan river by John, and as he came up out of the water and was praying to the Lord, the Holy Spirit came upon him in the form of a dove. In this event we see the voice of God the Father from heaven saying, “Thou art my beloved Son; with thee I am well pleased.” (Verse 22)
Now this is an interesting event for in it we see three separate and individual supernatural beings together at the same time: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. There are many who believe in the doctrine of the trinity, but this section of scripture does not support the typical representation of a three in one God. According to this doctrine, God exists as three persons but is one God.
Now there is no doubt that the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit all were unified in thought, approach and ministry, but from this scripture it is evident they are three quite distinct beings. The Son, Jesus, says in many places that although he and the Father are one in mind and thought, the Father is greater than he.
So we see here the beginning of the work of Jesus when he received the Holy Spirit. In the same way when we receive the Holy Spirit from God, the work commences in our lives to be transformed into the image of Christ. This is the work of the Spirit in us, to transform our lives so that we can be like Jesus and come into the image and likeness of God. This is the power spoken of in the first chapter of Acts where Jesus said that we would receive power to become the children of God.
From this point on in the book of Luke we begin to see the work that Jesus accomplished in rolling out the New Covenant so that we could receive salvation from sin.