The Gospel writers compel us, as it were, to pass through John the Baptist to get to Jesus; all four Gospels give us a version of Jesus’ baptism by John. But this baptism was embarrassing to the early Church, because it was interested in presenting Jesus as the Son of God, and yet people were coming to John as sinners for a baptism of repentance. Why would the incarnate Son of God seek out such a baptism? It is the very embarrassment of the baptism that, in many ways, is the point.

Mass Readings

Reading 1 – Isaiah 42:1-7
Psalm – Psalm 29:1-10
Reading 2 – Acts 10:34-38
Gospel – Mark 1:7-11