I love how the visual arts can help me appreciate new dimensions of the gospel. Take this classic painting by Piero della Francesca, voted in a 2005 poll ‘Greatest Paintings in Britain’ to ninth place! Perhaps it is the sense of time-standing-still that captivates our eyes and interest in our hyper-active contemporary lives.
This scene is so important and inspiring that it is recorded in all four gospels of the New Testament. The baptism of Jesus at the Jordan River is the moment the public ministry of Jesus begins, a ministry that would continue through healing and preaching and embracing, even through crucifixion to resurrection and ascension.
What intrigues me is the tentativeness of John as he baptizes Jesus – look at the awkward position of John’s one leg and hand. Even more intriguing are the reactions of the three women/angels to the side of Jesus – they look perturbed, disturbed, even shocked. And the question confronts me … why this tentativeness, why this shock?
I know the answer may not only help me to better understand the baptism of Jesus, but my own. I look forward to this Sunday and the exploration of these questions.
If you are in the area, we would welcome you to join in the worship of God. Have a look at the Order of Service below (and the announcements – please consider each a personal invitation to join us in Christian worship, community and service), and some additional information about the service that follows.
During the service there is offered a nursery for infants and a programme for young children if desired. There is free parking on the streets around (please note that the time-of-day restrictions on Clergy Street north of Queen are not in effect on Sundays) and in the surface civic lot just behind the church off Queen Street. There is a wheel chair lift available in the doors of the church closest to the manse (the courtyard is entered from the driveway half way along the St. Andrew’s block of Clergy Street) and a wheelchair ramp is available through doors along Princess Street. If you have any other questions, please call the church office Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. – noon, or email firstname.lastname@example.org