Luke 3:21
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened

New Living Translation
One day when the crowds were being baptized, Jesus himself was baptized. As he was praying, the heavens opened,

English Standard Version
Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heavens were opened,

Berean Study Bible
When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as He was praying, heaven was opened,

Berean Literal Bible
Now it came to pass, in all the people having been baptized, Jesus also having been baptized and having prayed, the heaven was opened,

New American Standard Bible
Now when all the people were baptized, Jesus was also baptized, and while He was praying, heaven was opened,

King James Bible
Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

Holman Christian Standard Bible
When all the people were baptized, Jesus also was baptized. As He was praying, heaven opened,

International Standard Version
When all the people had been baptized, Jesus, too, was baptized. While he was praying, heaven opened,

NET Bible
Now when all the people were baptized, Jesus also was baptized. And while he was praying, the heavens opened,

New Heart English Bible
Now it happened, when all the people were baptized, Jesus also had been baptized, and was praying. The sky was opened,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
It happened that when he had baptized all the people, he baptized Yeshua also, and as he prayed, the heavens were opened.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When all the people were baptized, Jesus, too, was baptized. While he was praying, heaven opened,

New American Standard 1977
Now it came about when all the people were baptized, that Jesus also was baptized, and while He was praying, heaven was opened,

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass that, Jesus also being baptized and praying, the heaven was opened,

King James 2000 Bible
Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that when Jesus also was baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

American King James Version
Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

American Standard Version
Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that, Jesus also having been baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

Douay-Rheims Bible
Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that Jesus also being baptized and praying, heaven was opened;

Darby Bible Translation
And it came to pass, all the people having been baptised, and Jesus having been baptised and praying, that the heaven was opened,

English Revised Version
Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that, Jesus also having been baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

Webster's Bible Translation
Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

Weymouth New Testament
Now when all the people had been baptized, and Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the sky opened,

World English Bible
Now it happened, when all the people were baptized, Jesus also had been baptized, and was praying. The sky was opened,

Young's Literal Translation
And it came to pass, in all the people being baptised, Jesus also being baptised, and praying, the heaven was opened,
Study Bible
The Baptism of Jesus
20Herod added this to them all: He locked John up in prison. 21When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as He was praying, heaven was opened, 22and the Holy Spirit descended on Him in a bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are My beloved Son; in You I am well pleased.”…
Cross References
Ezekiel 1:1
Now it came about in the thirtieth year, on the fifth day of the fourth month, while I was by the river Chebar among the exiles, the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God.

Matthew 3:13
At that time Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John.

Matthew 14:23
After He had sent them away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone,

Mark 1:9
In those days Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.

Luke 5:16
Yet He frequently withdrew to the wilderness to pray.

Luke 9:18
One day as Jesus was praying in private and the disciples were with Him, He questioned them: "Who do the people say I am?"

Luke 9:28
About eight days after Jesus had said these things, He took Peter, John, and James, and went up on a mountain to pray.

Luke 9:29
And as He was praying, the appearance of His face changed, and His clothes became radiantly white.

John 1:51
Then He declared, "Truly, truly, I say to all of you that you will see heaven open and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."

Acts 1:22
beginning from John's baptism until the day Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection."
Treasury of Scripture

Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,

that.

Matthew 3:13-15 Then comes Jesus from Galilee to Jordan to John, to be baptized of him…

Mark 1:9 And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth …

John 1:32 And John bore record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven …

and praying.

Luke 9:28,29 And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took …

John 12:27,28 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from …

the heaven.

Matthew 3:16,17 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: …

Mark 1:10 And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, …

John 1:32-34 And John bore record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven …

(21-22) Now when all the people were baptized.--See Notes on Matthew 3:13-17. St. Luke's account is the shortest of the three first Gospels, but it adds here, as afterwards in his report of the Transfiguration, the fact that our Lord was "praying" at the time of the divine attestation to His Sonship. (See Introduction.)

Verses 21, 22. - The baptism of Jesus. Verses 21, 22. - Now when all the people were baptized. This is the shortest account of the first three Gospels of this event. Two circumstances related are, however, peculiar to St. Luke - the fact that he ascended "praying" from the water, and the opening words of this verse, which probably signify that on this day Jesus waited till the crowds who were in the habit of coming to John had been baptized. Jesus also being baptized. There is a curious addition to the Gospel narratives of the baptism of the Lord preserved by Jerome. He tells us he extracted it from the Hebrew Gospel used by the Nazarenes, a copy of which in his day was preserved at Caesarea. "Lo, the mother of the Lord and his brethren said to him, John the Baptist is baptizing for the remission of sins; let us go and be baptized by him. But he answered and said unto them, In what have I sinned, that I should go and be baptized by him? unless, indeed, it be in ignorance that I have said what I have just said." It is, no doubt, a very ancient traditional saying, and is perhaps founded on some well-authenticated oral tradition. If St. Luke knew of it, he did not consider it of sufficient importance to incorporate it in his narrative. In St. Matthew's account of the "baptism," John at first resists when asked to perform the rite on his kinsman Jesus. His knowledge of Jesus at this time was evidently considerable. He was acquainted, of course, with all that had already happened in his "cousin's" life, and probably it had been revealed to him, or told him by his mother (Luke 1:43), that in the Nazareth Carpenter, the Son of Mary, he was to look for the promised Messiah, with whose life-story his was so closely bound up. The answers to the question, What was the reason of Jesus' baptism? have been many. In this, as in many things connected with the earthly life of our Lord, there is much that is mysterious, and we can never hope here to solve these difficulties with any completeness. The mystic comments of the Fathers, though not perfectly satisfactory, are, however, after all the best of the many notes that have been made on this difficult question. Bishop Wordsworth sums them up well in his words: "He came to baptize water, by being baptized in it." Ignatius ('Ad. Eph.,' 18, beginning of the second century) writes, "He was baptized that, by his submission to the rite, he might purify the water." Jerome, in the same strain, says, "He did not so much get cleansing from baptism, as impart cleansing to it." It would seem that Jesus, in submitting to the rite himself, did it with the intention of sanctifying the blessed sacrament in the future. And praying. Peculiar to St. Luke. This evangelist on eight other occasions mentions the praying of Jesus. The heaven was opened, and the Holy Ghost descended... upon him. While he was praying and gazing up into heaven, the deep blue vault was rent asunder, and the Sinless One gazed far into the realms of eternal light; and as he gazed he saw descend a ray of glory, which, dove-like, brooded above his head, and then lighted upon him. This strange bright vision was seen, not only by him, but by the Baptist (John 1:32, 33). That the form of a dove absolutely descended and lighted upon Jesus seems unlikely; a radiant glorious Something both Jesus and the Baptist saw descending. John compares it to a dove - this cloud of glory sailing through the clear heaven, then, bird-like, sinking, hovering, or brooding, over the head of the Sinless One, then lighting, as it were, upon him. In likening the radiant vision to a dove, probably John had heard of the rabbinical comment (it is in the Talmud) on Genesis 1:2, that the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters like a dove. Milton has reproduced the thought -

"And with mighty wings outspread
Dove-like sat'st brooding on the vast abyss."


(Paradise Lost,' 1:20.) John, for want of a better simile, reproduced the image which he had doubtless heard from his teacher in the Law, when he desired to represent in earthly language the Divine Thing which in some bodily form he had seen. In the early Church there was a legend very commonly current - we find it in Justin Martyr ('Dialogue with Trypho,' 88), and also in the Apocryphal Gospels - that at the baptism of Jesus a fire was kindled in Jordan. This was doubtless another, though a more confused memory of the glory-appearance which John saw falling on the Messiah. And a voice came from heaven; better rendered, out of heaven. We read in the Talmud that "on the death of the last prophets - Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi - the Holy Spirit departed from Israel; but they (i.e. Israeli were availing themselves of the daughter (echo) of a voice, Bath-Kol, for the reception of Divine communications" ('Treatise Yoma,' fol. 9, col. 2). In the Gospels there is a mention of the heavenly voice being again heard at the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:5), and during the last week of the earthly ministry (John 12:28-30). In the story of Israel the Persons of the everblessed Trinity were pleased to manifest themselves on various occasions to mortal eye and mortal ear. Very frequently to the eye, in the visible glory of the pillar of cloud and fire in the desert journeys; in the glorious light which shone in the holy of holies, first in the tabernacle of the wanderings, then in the temple; in the flame as in the burning bush, and in the visions of Isaiah and Ezekiel; in appearances as in the meeting with Abraham and with Joshua. To the ear the word of the Lord spoke, amongst others, to Abraham, Moses, Samuel, and the later prophets. So in this, the transition period of Messiah, the visible glory of God and the audible voice of God were again seen and heard by mortal man. Jerome calls attention here to the distinctness of each of the Persons of the blessed Trinity, as shown in this baptism of the Messiah. "The mystery of the Trinity is shown in the baptism of Christ The Lord is baptized, the Spirit descends in the likeness of a dove, the voice of the Father is heard bearing witness to his Son, and the dove settles on the head of Jesus, lest any one should imagine that the voice was for John and not for Christ." We may with all reverence conclude that, after the hearing of the voice from heaven, "the Messianic self- consciousness would undoubtedly expand with rapidity, both intensively and extensively, into complete maturity. That self- consciousness, it must be borne in mind, would necessarily, so far as this human side of his Being was concerned, be subject, in its development, to the condition of time" (Dr. Morrison, on Matthew 3:17). Now when all the people were baptized,.... That came from several parts to John for this purpose, even as many as he judged to be proper subjects of that ordinance, as many of the common people, publicans, soldiers, &c.

it came to pass that Jesus also being baptized; of John in Jordan, he coming from Galilee thither on that account:

and praying; after he was baptized, for the coming down of the Spirit upon him, as man, to anoint, and qualify him for his office he was now about to enter on publicly: and for success in it, and for a testimony from heaven, that he was the Son of God, and true Messiah:

the heaven was opened; See Gill on Matthew 3:16. Lu 3:21, 22. Baptism of and Descent of the Spirit upon Jesus.

(See on [1561]Mt 3:13-17.)

21. when all the people were baptized—that He might not seem to be merely one of the crowd. Thus, as He rode into Jerusalem upon an ass, "whereon yet never man sat" (Lu 19:30), and lay in a sepulchre "wherein was never man yet laid" (Joh 19:41), so in His baptism He would be "separate from sinners."3:21,22 Christ did not confess sin, as others did, for he had none to confess; but he prayed, as others did, and kept up communion with his Father. Observe, all the three voices from heaven, by which the Father bare witness to the Son, were pronounced while he was praying, or soon after, Lu 9:35; Joh 12:28. The Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and there came a voice from heaven, from God the Father, from the excellent glory. Thus was a proof of the Holy Trinity, of the Three Persons in the Godhead, given at the baptism of Christ.
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