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Featured Window

Window of the Month
Our Lady of Grace, Dearborn Heights, Michigan

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Building Name: Third Reformed Church

City: Holland

Window Shape: 2 (rectangle)

Subject/Title of Window: The Baptism

Brief Description of Subject: Matt 20:22 Are you able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of?

The window setting forth the Baptism of Jesus Christ is based upon far more Scriptural material than the previous representation. In the previous one there have been only a few short verses to draw from, but today we have three actual accounts of the Baptism given in Matthew, Mark and Luke. They tell us of Jesus arrival at the Jordan where Joh was baptizing, of Jesus request for baptism, of John’s reluctance to baptize Jesus request for baptism, of Johns reluctance to baptize Jesus, of the reason Jesus gave for desiring baptism, of the manifestation of God’s presence in the Holy Spirit tells us that John the Baptist had pointed out Jesus, saying “Behold the Lamb of God” (John 1:36). We also known that the place was a desert and that the river was the Jordan. We have a description of the clothing of John the Baptist. All this we have as background and we might say, how fortunate the arties is to have so much to draw from. On the other hand, we might ask, how will any artist ever represent all this without making a Hodge podge of his drawing.

In the figure of Jesus Christ, we have more of what the Scripture tells us. The white robes stand for his purity, and we wonder then why it is that He should require Baptism and we can think of no other reason than that which Christ himself gave that so it become him to fulfill all righteousness. Thus He truly took to Himself the place of a man, being identified with the world of sinful men. As we look at his face and his hands we can see that to him is a moment of supreme dedication. This is the beginning of the work which has been set for him to do. The downcast eyes and the hands in the attitude of prayer are the symbol of this dedication. Here is one who is submitting himself to God in order that He may do Gods work in the world.

So far we can see the scripture shining through the window. But there is one aspect which we have not touched as yet, namely the miraculous manifestation which accomplished Jesus’s baptism-a dove descended from heaven and the voice of the Father saying, this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. (Matt 3:17). One glance at the top of the window tells us that Holy Spirit is represented here in the conventional form of a dove, but what about the words of God because pf an incident in the Old Testament in which Aaron’s rod brought forth an almond blossom as a sign that God had chosen him to be the high priest. SO in this picture the almond foliage is the sign of what God said at the occasion of the Baptism of His Son.
Here we have the whole incident carefully and beautifully set before us in this window, and as we have in the past, we ask ourselves what the significance of it is both in the terms of our Christian thinking and in terms of a personal message to our minds.

The heart of this picture is the face of Jesus and it is that which gives to us the personal message which can come to each one of us as we study it and meditate upon us.

To all the outward appearances this is that picture of a man who is utterly giving himself to the work that God has assigned to Him. That rouses in us a feeling of kinship and a desire that we too be dedicated to such a cause.  This feeling is reinforced when we look at the symbol drawn between the shield at the bottom of the window. It is Christ’s purity and his mission in the world. We ourselves have either been carried to such a fount and there dedicated to God, or we came when we had arrived at mature years to take upon ourselves the commission which the Lord has given to us. Thus we are identified with Him.
This picture asks us very personally, can ye drink of the cup that I drink of?  And be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with Think what that means. Think what it means as we try to put ourselves in Jesus’s place. At that moment of baptism Jesus for sook every other pursuit in life except that of fulfilling the commands and the will of God. From that day forward He would do nothing but for where the love of God would leave him.

The Baptism
The Baptism

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