Zachary Baker Rodes
In today’s Gospel reading from the Daily Office, we read of Luke’s account of John’s ministry immediately preceding the start of Jesus’. As we know, John was also baptizing but the key difference is that only the Messiah will baptize “with (or in as some translations say) the Holy Spirit”. John has simply, as he says, been baptizing people with water.
As we know, water is a cleansing force. We bathe it, we wash things in it, and with the Holy Spirit, we are baptized into a new life in Christ. But that is not all that the Messiah will do. He will also “gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
In this Eastertide, we are ever contemplating what our baptism means to us, for it is the way in which we have died into Christ and then been born also into his Resurrection. While Pentecost is still weeks away, what are we doing now to live into a life that is filled with the Holy Spirit? One that is proclaiming, just like John, the “good news to the people”. My hope and prayer is that you as an individual, and collectively as a community, can further feel the movement of the Spirit in our lives and what that leads us to do as Christians.
The Rev. Charles Hoffacker is a retired priest of the Diocese of Washington