At a time when prophets were thought to have been a thing of the distant past, along comes this strange man calling his fellow Israelites to repentance and inviting them to symbolize this renewed commitment by getting dunked in the River Jordan.
John Kavanaugh, SJ
The happy paradox of it all is that repentance itself is the beginning of hope. The moment we recognize our insufficiency and failure, we can own up to our exiled condition, from which we long to return.
Reginald H. Fuller
There can be no doubt that the “historical Baptist” did baptize; this is attested not only by the New Testament but also by the Jewish historian Josephus. The latter gives a non-sacramental interpretation to it; he regards it merely as a sign of conversion from sin to righteousness.