And the lesson today in Give us this day is from John 1:28 and tells the tale of Jesus, John and the Jordan.
These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptising.
Not here in Israel…
But here in Jordan.
Like all things in the Middle East there is a history and a land dispute.
Israel claims that John baptised Jesus in this spot, modern-day Israel, in the River Jordan.
While the Jordanians claim that it was further in, deep in their country, modern-day Jordan.
In what is, to our tongue, Bethany.
It looked like a dry ditch when I visited Al-Maghtas, ‘immersion’ in Arabic, in the baking heat of an early Jordan summer.
But the fact is, and not meaning to sit on the fence wherever that might be, you do get a very powerful sense that Jesus of Nazareth was here.
The Pope on John, Jesus and the Jordan
Pope Francis visited the Jordanian site on the east of the river back in 2014 after he became pontiff.
While further to the west a group of Russian Orthodox Christians took a dip in the waters.
Which means you don’t have to imagine hordes of pilgrims being reborn again with the water of life.
You just have to open your ears and eyes to the spectacle before you from the Jordanian side.
As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him.Matthew 3:16-17
And sorry for mixing my evangelists which is a canonical crime on par with mixing metaphors.
Judge for yourself if I stay on the right path with my review of Jordan and we’ll visit Petra and go on a camel ride. https://jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/petra-jordan-jesus-and-the-sands-of-time/(opens in a new tab)