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The Blue Letter Bible

Don Stewart :: If Jesus Was without Sin, Then Why Was He Baptized?

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Don Stewart

Before Jesus began His public ministry He came to John the Baptist for baptism.

I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:11)

The problem this causes is that John's baptism was one of repentance. If sinless, why did Jesus submit Himself to water baptism?

He Fulfilled All Righteousness At His Baptism

Jesus explained why He was baptized. It was to fulfill all righteousness.

Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?" Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Then John consented (Matthew 3:13-15).

He Was An ExampleTo Believers

Jesus life was to serve as a pattern or example to believers. Those who trust Jesus as their Savior are to follow Him in water baptism.

Jesus Came Out Of The Water Immediately

The Bible also emphasizes that Jesus came immediately out of the water. People stayed in the water to confess their sins. The fact that He came immediately out of the water is another indication that he had no sin.


Although He was without sin Jesus submitted to the baptism of John which was a baptism of repentance. John attempted to stop Him because John knew Jesus was without sin. Jesus explained the necessity of Him being baptized - it was to fulfill all righteousness.

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