Celebrating the Baptism of Our Lord in Art…

… Giovanni Bellini, Baptism of Christ c. 1500-02

Today the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Baptism of Our Lord. This brings to an end the season of Christmas. The Church recalls Our Lord’s second manifestation or epiphany which occurred on the occasion of His baptism in the Jordan. Jesus descended into the River to sanctify its waters and to give them the power to beget sons of God. The event takes on the importance of a second creation in which the entire Trinity intervenes.

In the Eastern Church this feast is called Theophany because at the baptism of Christ in the River Jordan God appeared in three persons. SOURCE

Gerard David, detail of Triptych of Jean Des Trompes (central panel) c. 1505

Many of the incidents which accompanied Christ’s baptism are symbolical of what happened at our Baptism. At Christ’s baptism the Holy Spirit descended upon Him; at our Baptism the Trinity took its abode in our soul. At His baptism Christ was proclaimed the “Beloved Son” of the Father; at our Baptism we become the adopted sons of God. At Christ’s baptism the heavens were opened; at our Baptism heaven was opened to us. At His baptism Jesus prayed; after our Baptism we must pray to avoid actual sin.

Juan de Flandes, The Baptism of Christ c. 1496-99

Collect: Almighty ever-living God, who, when Christ had been baptized in the River Jordan and as the Holy Spirit descended upon him, solemnly declared him your beloved Son, grant that your children by adoption, reborn of water and the Holy Spirit, may always be well pleasing to you. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo, Baptism of Christ c. 1655

Related Link: Why Put A Crucifix in Every Room of Your Home?

About Katrina Fernandez

Mackerel Snapping Papist

  • http://rosarynovice.stblogs.com/ Augustine

    In a way, St. John the Baptist was a proto-apostle, for he was going out preaching the kerigma: repent, believe in the Lamb and receive baptism of water, prefiguring by just a few years the Apostles themselves and baptism of water and Spirit. Just like the Blessed Virgin May was the pinnacle of Judaism and the pinnacle of Christianity, St John the Baptist was the greatest Prophet of the Old Covenant and the first to precede the Apostles.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X