Baptism of Jesus
The baptism of Jesus marks the beginning of his public ministry. This event is recorded in the canonical gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke. John's gospel does not describe Jesus' baptism, but John the Baptist does testify of the other things in .
In the New Testament, John the Baptist preached the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins ( ), and declared himself a forerunner of he that would baptize "with the Holy Ghost and with fire" ( ). In so doing he was preparing the way for Jesus. Jesus came to the Jordan River where he was baptized by John. The baptismal scene includes the heavens opening, a dove-like descent of the Holy Spirit, and a voice from heaven saying, "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."
Most modern scholars view the fact that Jesus was baptized by John as an historical event to which a high degree of certainty can be assigned. Along with the crucifixion of Jesus most scholars view it as one of the two historically certain facts about him, and often use it as the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus.
The baptism is one of the five major milestones in the gospel narrative of the life of Jesus, the others being the Transfiguration, Crucifixion, Resurrection, and Ascension. Most Christian denominations view the baptism of Jesus as an important event and a basis for the Christian rite of baptism (see also ). In Eastern Christianity, Jesus' baptism is commemorated on 6 January, the feast of Epiphany. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, the Lutheran Churches and some other Western denominations, it is recalled on a day within the following week, the feast of the baptism of the Lord. In Roman Catholicism, the baptism of Jesus is one of the Luminous Mysteries sometimes added to the Rosary. It is a Trinitarian feast in the Eastern Orthodox Churches.
In the gospels, the accounts of the baptism of Jesus are preceded by information about John the Baptist and his ministry. In these accounts, John was preaching repentance for the remission of sins and encouraged the giving of alms to the poor (as in ) while he baptized people in the area of the river Jordan around Perea. The Gospel of John ( ) specifies "Bethabara beyond Jordan", i.e., Bethany in Perea as the location where John was baptizing when Jesus began choosing disciples, and in there is mention of further baptisms in Ænon "because there was much water there".
The four gospels are not the only references to John's ministry around the river Jordan. In apostle Peter refers to how the ministry of Jesus followed "the baptism which John preached". In the Antiquities of the Jews (18.5.2) 1st century historian Flavius Josephus also wrote about John the Baptist and his eventual death in Perea., the
In the gospels, John had been foretelling (as in  The apostle Paul also referred to this anticipation by John in . In Matthew 3:14, upon meeting Jesus, John said: "I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?" However, Jesus convinced John to baptize him nonetheless. After Jesus went up "out of the water", the heavens opened, the Spirit of God descended like a dove upon him, and a voice from heaven said: "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." ( )  In rather than a direct narrative, John the Baptist bare witness to the revelation. This is one of two cases in the gospels where a voice from heaven called Jesus "Son", the other being at the Transfiguration of Jesus.) the arrival of a someone "mightier than I".
After the baptism, the Synoptic gospels describe the temptation of Jesus, where Jesus withdrew to the Judean desert to fast for forty days and nights. But narrates an encounter, (in the early spring "not many days" before the passover,) between Jesus and two of his future disciples, who were then disciples of John the Baptist.
The episode in Lamb of God, the "two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus". One of the disciples is named Andrew, but the other remains unnamed, and Raymond E. Brown raises the question of his being the author of the Gospel of John himself. In the Gospel of John, the disciples follow Jesus thereafter, and bring other disciples to him, and portrays the disciples of John as eventually merging with the followers of Jesus.forms the start of the relationship between Jesus and his future disciples. When John the Baptist called Jesus the
The Baptism in the Gospel of the Hebrews
According to the Gospel of the Hebrews, the idea of being baptized by John came from the mother and brothers of Jesus, and Jesus himself, originally opposed, reluctantly accepted it. . Benjamin Urrutia avers that this version is supported by the Criterion of Embarrassment, since followers of Jesus would not have invented an episode in which Jesus changes his mind and comes to accept someone else's plan. Plus, the story came from the community that included the family of Jesus, who would have guaranteed the authenticity of the narrative. 
Location and chronology
In the 3rd century Origen, who moved to the area from Alexandria, suggested Bethabara as the location. In the 4th century, Eusebius of Caesarea stated that the location was on the west bank of the Jordan, and following him, the early Byzantine Madaba Map shows Bethabara as (Βέθαβαρά).
A favorite place for Christian pilgrimages to the location of the baptism of Jesus on the Jordan River is near Jericho. Located on the bank of the Jordan at Al-Maghtas (baptism, or immersion in Arabic), this possible site was found following UNESCO-sponsored excavations.
In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea…, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
There are two approaches to determining when the reign of Tiberius Caesar started. The traditional approach is that of assuming that the reign of Tiberius started when he became co-regent in 11 AD, placing the start of the ministry of John the Baptist around 26 AD. However, some scholars assume it to be upon the death of his predecessor Augustus Caesar in 14 AD, implying that the ministry of John the Baptist began in 29 AD.
The generally assumed dates for the start of the ministry of John the Baptist based on this reference in the Gospel of Luke are about 28-29 AD, with the ministry of Jesus with his baptism following it shortly thereafter.
Most modern scholars believe that John the Baptist performed a baptism on Jesus, and view it as a historical event to which a high degree of certainty can be assigned.James Dunn states that the historicity of the baptism and crucifixion of Jesus "command almost universal assent". Dunn states that these two facts "rank so high on the 'almost impossible to doubt or deny' scale of historical facts" that they are often the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus.John Dominic Crossan states that it is historically certain that Jesus was baptised by John in the Jordan.
The existence of John the Baptist within the same time frame as Jesus, and his eventual execution by Herod Antipas is attested to by 1st century historian Flavius Josephus and the overwhelming majority of modern scholars view Josephus' accounts of the activities of John the Baptist as authentic. Josephus establishes a key connection between the historical events he recorded and specific episodes that appear in the gospels. The reference in the Antiquities of the Jews by Josephus to John's popularity among the crowds (Ant 18.5.2) and how he preached his baptism is considered a reliable historical datum. Unlike the gospels, Josephus does not relate John and Jesus, and does not state that John's baptisms were for the remission of sins. However, almost all modern scholars consider the Josephus passage on John to be authentic in its entirety and view the variations between Josephus and the gospels as indications that the Josephus passages are authentic, for a Christian interpolator would have made them correspond to the Christian traditions.
One of the arguments in favour of the historicity of the baptism of Jesus by John is that it is a story which the early Christian Church would have never wanted to invent, typically referred to as the criterion of embarrassment in historical analysis. Based on this criterion, given that John baptised for the remission of sins, and Jesus was viewed as without sin, the invention of this story would have served no purpose, and would have been an embarrassment given that it positioned John above Jesus. The Gospel of Matthew attempts to offset this problem by having John feel unworthy to baptise Jesus and Jesus giving him permission to do so in .
The gospels are not the only references to the baptisms performed by John and in apostle Peter refers to how the ministry of Jesus followed "the baptism which John preached". Another argument used in favour of the historicity of the baptism is that multiple accounts refer to it, usually called the criterion of multiple attestation. Technically, multiple attestation does not guarantee authenticity, but only determines antiquity. However, for most scholars, together with the criterion of embarrassment it lends credibility to the baptism of Jesus by John being a historical event., the
While the gospel of Luke is explicit about the Spirit of God descending in the shape of a dove, the wording of Matthew is vague enough that it could be interpreted only to suggest that the descent was in the style of a dove. Although a variety of symbolisms were attached to doves at the time these passages were written, the dove imagery has become a well known symbol for the Holy Spirit in Christian art. Depictions of the baptismal scene typical show the sky opening and the Holy Spirit descending as a dove towards Jesus.
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Life of Jesus
Ministry of John the Baptist,
further preceded by
Boy Jesus at Jerusalem
Temptation of Jesus
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