On this day of the year 31 A.D., our Master, Lord and God, Jesus Christ, was baptized at the hands of St. John the Baptizer (the dyer). The feast is called in Greek the Feast of Theophany or the Feast of the Revelation of the Divine Nature of the Lord, for the Holy Trinity was revealed: our heavenly Father was heard from heaven saying, "This is My beloved Son," and the Son standing in the Jordan river, and the Holy Spirit was descending in the form of a dove, and alighting upon Him.
St. John the Baptist bore witness that the Lord Christ, when He had been baptized, came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven saying,
"This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased."
St. John the evangelist said about this day, "The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, 'Behold! The Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world. This is He of Whom I said, 'After me comes a Man Who is preferred before me, for He was before me.' I did not know him but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water.'" (John 1:29-31) The glory of our Lord Jesus Christ was revealed on this day, that He is the Son of God and that He is the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world. For this reason, this feast has become a great feast for all believers, in which they are purified with water after the example of the baptism of our Lord, to Whom is the glory, to obtain forgiveness of their sins.
Glory, honor and worship to our Lord God, now and forever more and to the end of ages. Amen.
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