During last Sunday’s talk from Luke 3 we saw that after Jesus is baptised and at prayer, the Holy Spirit descends upon Him and the Heavenly Father declares Him to be his Son as well as Servant. “Heaven was opened.” The baptism opens communication with heaven, that is, with God. Being earthbound is no longer a barrier. This is why faith in Jesus is so beautifully important. As God’s children we have instant access to him and his grace.

Jesus underwent baptism not because he sinned, as we do, and needed forgiveness, but because he identified so much with us and our condition, that he wanted to rescue us. Jesus became like us in all things but sin, so that we, too, could become like him without sin.

Our greatest threat is a way of life which day in and day out, crowds out faith, elbows God out, takes over in subtle ways, forming and shaping us in such a way that we forget who we are and what God has called us to do in this world.

This thought of our belovedness by faith transcends rational thought as we long transformation at the very core of our being. For I’m convinced that this Luke 3 moment, when the spirit of God splits the heaven and descends on Jesus is the hinge point of Jesus’ life and ministry. The weight of his destiny is in this phrase – “You are my beloved Son with you I am well pleased”.

And the voice that declared Jesus God’s beloved Son is still speaking in our souls, “You are mine. You are unique and special. I am pleased with you. I love you. I love you so much that I gave my beloved Son for you. You are my beloved son, you are my beloved daughter.”

Know yourself beloved of God. Can you receive this greeting of Jesus? It may be hard. But believing what Jesus never forgot will truly change everything. May the love of God sustain you and I in 2017?  By faith you are His beloved!