"You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased."

When Jesus is baptized, the voice from heaven booms out and names him: "You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased." This affirmation is the defining moment for the prophet from Nazareth. It is God's declaration of love to God's new Israel; it is God's naming to supreme accountability; it is God's surprise for the world of the proud and powerful.

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Feast of the Baptism of the Lord , Jan. 13, 2013 (BaptismLordC)
From the
Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Readings
Podcast of the Readings 
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios 
New American Bible
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: Why must Catholic parents to baptize their babies?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.

First Reading
Isaiah 42:1-4, 6-7 or Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11

1. In this reading (Isaiah 42), God says to the suffering servant, "Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased." Then in the Gospel a voice comes from heaven, saying to Jesus, "You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased." What are the implications?

2. Wastelands, deserts, rugged land and rough country (Isaiah 40). Could these words describe the world today? The Church? Your spiritual life? Does this reading suggest that there is help in fixing these or do you have to do it all yourself?

Responsorial Psalm

Psalm 29: 1-2, 3-4, 3, 9-10

1. The Psalm's verses speak of the power and splendor of the voice of the Lord, thundering over the waters. Have you heard God's powerful voice
speaking to you, anointing you as one of His chosen ones?

2. Our psalmist encourages us to give God the glory due His holy name. Tell of how you give God the glory in your activities and your everyday life.

Second Reading
Reading II: Acts 10:34-38 or
Titus 2:11-14; 3:4-7

1. Did we do anything to earn salvation? Why does God give it to us? What does St. Paul in his letter to Titus say about the extravagance of God's gift to us?

2. In the reading from Acts, Peter is quoted as saying about Jesus: "He went about doing good and healing all those oppressed by the devil." Compare this with Isaiah in the First Reading: "I formed you…to open the eyes of the blind, to bring out prisoners from confinement, and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness."

Luke 3:15-16, 21-22

1. John the Baptist was the middleman. He pointed back to Isaiah and forward to Jesus, connecting the whole plan. What or who are the "middlemen or women" who connect you with God? In what way are you a middle person?

2. Jesus stood in line with everyone else to be baptized. What does this tell you about him? Can you think of anything that God asks you to do that Jesus didn't experience in some way?

Sunday Bible Study Group
Please share your thoughts on these Sunday Readings. And please do use these questions for your own Bible study sessions with family and friends.

1 comment:

  1. Barry Lamont1:25 PM

    “Bow down before the Lord's
    holy splendor!”

    The Psalm is about the splendor
    and the power of God. “Give
    to the Lord the glory due God’s
    name. Bow down before the Lord’s
    holy splendor.” The Psalm speaks
    of the voice of the Lord, “Thundering
    over the waters.” “The voice of the
    Lord is power, the voice of the Lord
    is splendor.”

    That same awesome voice was heard
    over the Jordan River that day when
    the heavens were torn open and the
    Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus just
    after he was baptized. What could be
    more powerful than the voice of God
    declaring, “This is my beloved Son,
    with whom I am well pleased.”

    What happened at the Jordan River
    that day was to fulfill what the Lord
    said to Isaiah (lst reading) – “Here is
    my servant whom I uphold, my chosen
    one with whom I am pleased, upon whom
    I have put my spirit.”

    The Lord's baptism may have
    happened over 2000 years ago, but that
    for us was an encouraging sign.
    God anointed Jesus with the Holy Spirit
    and power that day (2nd reading), the power
    to serve the faithful (people like us), and
    to do battle on our behalf with the devil.

    From that time forward we too became
    eligible to serve the Lord as His chosen
    ones. Isaiah tells us what our spiritual
    mission is to be: Like Jesus, we are to
    be a light to the nations, and open the
    eyes of the blind (those who do not know
    the Lord). And imitating Jesus, we are
    to bring out prisoners from confinement
    (those who may be imprisoned by sin).
    What better way would there be for us
    to serve the Lord?