Normally when I read this passage I think of Jesus and his preparation for baptism and think little of John the Baptist. John has been preaching a baptism of repetance for the forgiveness of sins and many have come and been baptized in the Jordan river. Then one day the one he has been telling people to get ready for shows up and requests baptism. There is only one problem with that, Jesus has no need for reptentance, he has never sinned.
John refuses and says that it should be the other way around and he is right, Jesus should be the one baptize John. Jesus however says that it must be John who baptizes him. Then the key section for me "Then he (John) consented" Matthew 3:15b. Not until this week and with some inspiration from workingpreacher.org had I seen John's consent as a matter of simple obedience to Christ.
I have never thought of John as someone who models obedience but he does and his modeling encourages us to think about our own obdience. That word is a hard word for independent minded American people. We are the self made generation who is shaping the world and we are going to do what we want, when we want and little if any is our fault.
We naturally shun obedience as an oppressive yoke and undoubtedly it has been used that way by some. However what we are looking at is John's obedience to Christ and therfore our obedience to Christ.
In the next post I will examine obedience is greater detail.