But Jesus answering said to him, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”
Sin didn’t bring Jesus to the river that day, obedience did. His hands were clean and His heart was already pure.
John, who they called “The Baptizer,” knew this. How could he… a sinful man, baptize the Lamb of God? In fact, he wasn’t sure if he could. When Jesus approached him, John questioned, “I have need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?”
But Jesus answered, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”
Jesus allowed John to baptize Him because it was the will of His Father. John agreed to do so because Jesus commanded him to do so.
This exchange is the first recorded command of Jesus in the New Testament. Its presence in the Scriptures serves to remind us of the role faith plays in obedience.
Unbelievers (and many Christians) reject the commands of Jesus because they don’t agree with logic, modern day culture, or some other tailored excuse.
The end goal of obedience isn’t logic or cultural acceptance though. It’s the glorification of God, or as Jesus put it, “the fulfillment of righteousness.”