Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Never Without Water

Tertullian writes [2],

"Christ was never without water.  He Himself was baptized with water; when invited to a marriage He inaugurates the exercise of His power with water; when talking He invites the thirsty to partake of His own everlasting water; when teaching about charity He approves among the works of love the offering of a cup of water to a neighbor; He refreshes his strength at a well-side;  He walks on water; He crosses it at will; He uses water to do an act of service to His disciples.  This witness to Baptism continues right up to the Passion.  When He is handed over to the cross, water plays a part (witness Pilate's hands); and when He is pierced, water gushes out from His side (witness the soldier's spear) ..."

The Holy Ghost was never without water, either, as God is One-in-Three, and in Lord Jesus the fullness of the Godhead dwells.   In the beginning of our coming to be, the Word informs us,  "the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters" (Gen 1:2).   The Holy Ghost did so again, in the beginning of a ministry which sought after our coming Home, when the Face of the Father was baptized and the Transcendent Deep uttered "Thou art My beloved Son; in Thee I AM well pleased"  (Lk 3:22).

You see, with the hovering of the Holy Ghost on the water, and especially on the Water of Life, the Father of that Water too can never be far away.   Under theses circumstances, the Father cannot help but "intrude" and predictably glory in, and immediately brag about, His beloved Son ...  whether calling Him "Light" (Gen 1:3), or calling Him "well-pleasing," or calling Him "Good" (Gen 1:4).

This is the nature of the Trinity, and the faithful Jew of yore knew this in his heart.  The worshipful Abraham was not shocked, befuddled or perplexed by the Presence of God, standing before him as Tri-unity.

Christ the God-man is never apart from water. It cannot be otherwise.  Water is a means by which God, again and again, chooses to relate to humanity.  This is the nature of the Incarnation.  For while man is derived from the stuff of the earth, he is also no less than 60% water by weight [1].


1.  VR Lingappa & K Farey, Physiological Medicine, p. 459, McGraw-Hill Co., Inc., New York (NY), 2000
2.  RL Wilkins, The Spirit of Early Christian Thought, p. 40-41, Yale University Press, New Haven (CT), 2003

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