The Holy Theophany

Matt. 3: 13-17, John 1: 29-34; Psalms 2: 6-7

The feast of the Theophany of our Lord Jesus is also called the Epiphany. It has a double significance because it has Trinitarian implications and is the true coronation of Jesus Christ as King.

A Variant Understanding

Some churches celebrate the visit of the magi to see Jesus as the declaration of Jesus as King as a result of their statement,” the one born King.” This declaration is hardly an act of coronation. Many babies have been recognized as born king because of paternity. However, many were not coronated. Killing babies “born king” happened often, even as Herod tried.

A Theophany: God manifested

However, the true coronation is the baptism of Jesus. Three of four main players are Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the Father. Consequently it has also been understood as the manifestation of God as Trinity. Especially since John 1: 29-34 indicates that the descent of the Spirit on a person would indicate to John that this person was the baptizer of the Holy Spirit, the Son of God.

Old testament type for king’s coronation

The activity of the Holy Spirit on Jesus during baptism is seen as an act of anointing as would happen to a person being coronated as king. The Old Testament type of this is oil poured on a king’s head. As Jesus comes out of the water the Holy Spirit descends on him from above and a voice speaks from heaven,( Matt. 3:16-17). The voice, the Father, says ” “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.”

Psalms 2 Realized

This scene is described in Psalms 2. The verses of note are v. 2 ..”against the Lord and his anointed, and verses 6-7, “I have set my king,( the anointed one) on Zion, my holy hill… saying “You are my son today I have begotten you”. The scene is a coronation of the Lord’s king and the nations of the earth warring against that King.

Today we celebrate that coronation and theophany. Let us celebrate with joy and humble gratitude that we have the incarnate God, Jesus, as our glorious King.