How do we get to know people?
Unless you are an expert Facebook stalker (or you work for the NSA), you typically get to know someone based on what they tell you about themselves. We use stories to both get to know other people as well as letting other people get to know us. This means that how we choose to reveal bits and pieces about ourselves determines how we grow into relationship with others.
As an example, if someone were to ask me where I am from, I may give entirely different answers based on the context of the question. The full story is that I was born and raised in Japan by my Canadian mother and British father. However, if I am just making polite conversation with someone, I may tell the person that my mom was from Vancouver, and that I’ve spent the last 10 years in Langley and Vancouver. Now, whilst the above is a correct statement of fact, the purpose of that statement is not to help people get to know me, but rather to fulfil my goal of not having to talk about sushi or to acquiesce to requests of “say something in Japanese!”
Fortunately for us, when Mark gives his account of Jesus’ baptism, his goal is to introduce us to Jesus, and he doesn’t hold anything back. Mark wants us to know that Jesus was more than just a human; Jesus was God himself. Not only does Mark make it clear that Jesus is God’s son, but he makes it a point with his very first description of Jesus to demonstrate that Jesus modelled what relationship with God the Father looks like.
What is relationship with God the father like?
It is pretty much as described in Mark 1:10-11. When you have relationship with God, not only does He look at you and say “you are my beloved son; with you I am well pleased,” but He sends His Holy Spirit to be with us.
What is the application of this for the Christian? First, praise God for his incredible love for us! We do not merit any love by our own works, yet we are assured of God’s love for us. This love is more than a generic universal positive energy; it is a Father’s passionate love for His children.
Second, be filled and revel in the Holy Spirit! Matthew 7:11 tells us how God the Father gives us good gifts, and just as God gave the Holy Spirit to Jesus at his baptism, God also gives us His Holy Spirit. When Paul exhorts the Ephesians in Eph 5.18 to be filled with the Spirit, the original Greek translates to “be being filled with the Spirit”, which speaks to an active engagement with the Holy Spirit. This means that we can come to God every day and be filled anew with His Spirit.
Have you met Jesus?
Finally, let’s return to the original question: Have you met Jesus? Do you know him? Just like we get to know other people by the stories they tell about themselves, we can get to know Jesus by the stories of his life. I would encourage you, and I am 100% speaking to myself here as well, to get to know Jesus more by getting to know the story of Jesus.