I’m reading The Woman in the Window with our Bon Accord Book Club this month. The story, told from the protagonist’s viewpoint, is a challenge to unravel. Just enough hints have been dropped, that any reader with a bit of awareness begins to question the story as presented. But once you start pulling on that string, things unravel and it is difficult to stop. Which of course, draws you into the book.
At the end of the third chapter of his gospel, Matthew uses a similar device in order to make us ask a question. Or rather, to get us to ask a question. The scene is the baptism of Jesus by his cousin, John the Baptist. John is cognizant of the great difference between himself and Jesus. It seems odd that the lesser would baptize the greater. But Jesus persuades him.
“…it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.”
I cannot claim to understand this fully. No doubt Matthew is again highlighting Jesus’ fulfillment of law and prophecy. But it is still a head-scratcher, especially considering the concluding statement of this episode:
“This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”
Here, before Jesus has performed any miracle or act of ministry worthy of Matthew’s recording, God declares Jesus worthy. If it were one of us, we would see the work of God’s unfathomable grace but there is something more going on here with Jesus. Who is He, receiving such a stamp of approval without any apparent work?
I suspect Matthew intended to draw our curiosity. We are supposed to be asking that question. Who is Jesus?
Lord, I seek You. Reveal Yourself to me.