Epiphany #2 — The Baptism Of The Lord Christ


Significance of Christ’s Baptism

Baptism — Baptism was not new to John’s ministry. In the OT it was a means by which there was a setting apart to a unique and holy purpose. This idea of setting apart by means of washing goes back to priestly ablutions (washings) prior to offering sacrifices (Leviticus 16:4 ,Leviticus 16:4,16:24 ).

4 He shall put on the holy linen tunic, and the linen undergarments shall be next to his body, and he shall be girded with the linen sash and attired with the linen turban (these are holy garments). Then he shall bathe his body in water and put them on…. 24.) He shall bathe his body with water in a holy place and put on his clothes, and come forth and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people and make atonement for himself and for the people.

So, the OT had categories for purification rites accomplished by water. When John takes this up, the Hebrew people would have had categories to understand what John the Baptist was doing.

We are going to suggest this morning four ways in which the Baptism of the Lord Christ was significant in its Redemptive-Historical setting. It is significant for more than just these four ways we will be looking at. I won’t have time to go into, for example, its significance in terms of its Trinitarian bearing.

The Significance of the Lord Christ’s Baptism is found

I.)In Baptism The Lord Christ Identifies w/ His People As Their Sin-bearer
II.) In Baptism The Lord Christ Identifies As Our Priest — (“Fulfilling all Righteousness”)
III.) In Baptism Identifies as our Sacrifice (Suffering Servant Connection) (Isaiah 42:1)
IV.) In The Baptism Of Our Lord Christ The New Creation Has Been Established

I.) Identifies w/ His People As Their Sin-bearer

John’s Baptism was for the remission of sin (Mark 1:4).

4 John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

John recognizes that Jesus has no need of being Baptized and so protests that the roles should be reversed. So, this tells us that Jesus had no need for Baptism unto remission of His own personal sins. As such we have need to ask ourselves why, if the Lord Christ had no sins, did He submit to Baptism.

And the answer is found in the reality that in His Baptism Jesus identifies with sinners. The Baptism of the Lord Christ thus is a covenantal action whereby covenantally the Lord Christ, via His Baptism, is set apart as being the Representative head of His people. He Himself had no sins but He would become the representative head for those who had sins that needed to be satisfied.

Scripture teaches of the Lord Christ,

21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

As such, we might say that in and with His Baptism the Lord Christ becomes the covenantal head of a great company of sinners for whom He will do and preform all things necessary for their salvation.

In this we find the covenantal nature of our Redemption. Christ is our appointed Champion and the success or failure of His mission will be our success or failure. We see again then the covenantal nature of Christianity. God saves His people as they are united with their covenantal head the Lord Christ. His Baptism objectively and covenantally unites Himself to them and His Death objectively and covenantally unites us to Him.

Of course this has implications.

1.) It implies that there is no approaching of the Father apart from being united to the Son

The adherents of false religions who are “nice” people remain dead in their trespasses and sins and remain strangers and aliens to eternal life.

2.) It implies that Christ is our righteousness

The Christian is defined as one who is eager for good works, created in Christ Jesus for good works, one who is filled with the Spirit and so walks in terms of God’s authoritative law and so are doers of the word. Christians are those who show their faith by their works yet at the same time we insist that all our righteousness is in Christ alone who is our righteousness from God.

II.) In Baptism The Lord Christ Identifies As Our Priest — (“Fulfilling all Righteousness”)

As the book of Hebrews informs us, with the coming of Jesus

12 For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also. 13 For the one concerning whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe, from which no one has officiated at the altar. 14 For it is evident that our Lord [a]was descended from Judah, a tribe with reference to which Moses spoke nothing concerning priests.

We remember that the Aaronic Priesthood of the Old Testament was only a shadow of the Priesthood of Christ, which would be the fulfillment that all the Aaronic Priesthood foreshadowed and anticipated. With the coming of Christ there is a change in the Priesthood and there is a change in the law inasmuch as the sacrificial laws are fulfilled in the Lord Christ. Because we have a change in Priesthood and law there is a necessity for the fulfilled Priesthood of Christ to be consecrated in keeping with God’s law. It was this law of consecration that Jesus was referring to when He said “For thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”

Of course this reminds us that with this new Priesthood from the tribe of Judah (as opposed to Levi) there remains a respect unto God’s law. Yes the Law has undergone a change from shadow to reality but with this defined and restricted change the broader Law of God is respected.

And the broader Law of God that is respected is found in Numbers 8:5-7,

5 ¶ And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 6 Take the Levites from among the children of Israel, and purify them.
7 And thus shalt thou do unto them, when thou purifiest them, Sprinkle water of purification upon them,

So, with the coming of Christ we have a new Priesthood but this new Priesthood is inaugurated in keeping with God’s Law so that this New Priest, from the Tribe of Judah, can be consecrated in keeping with God’s law.

When Christ says,

“For thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness”

This is the Righteousness that is being fulfilled.

a.) So, we are saying that the need to fulfill all righteousness is suggestive of the need to fulfill some concrete law.

b.) We see a harmony between what Jesus is doing and the necessity of Water in the Numbers passage. In Numbers the Priests are consecrated by the sprinkling of water. Here the Lord Christ is being consecrated to His work by the sprinkling of the Waters of Baptism.

c.) The Lord Christ was about to enter His Priestly work as member of a different tribe then those who were appointed the role of Priest. As such He understands His need to submit to the law of consecration. Remember Jesus says of Himself that He always is about the will of His Father. This OT consecration of the Priests was the will of the Father that Jesus is about here.


** — Christ is our Sin-Bearer, our Priest, and (as our next point will tease out) our Sacrifice. His Baptism connects all those realities. In Baptism He is being set aside to our be Champion before the Father. As such this Baptism is crucial to His ministry and work of Christ. In the Baptism of Christ, the Lord Christ goes from a private Person to a Public Person vested with authority (Spirit’s anointing, Father’s Imprimatur) to accomplish His work that He is set apart to do.

** — As our High Priest He can provide sacrifice before God for the sins of the People, but unlike the old Aaronic Priesthood His sacrifice is once and forever complete.

III.) Identifies as our Sacrifice (Suffering Servant Connection) (Isaiah 42:1)

Christ is not only the one who bears away our sin but He is also the atoning sacrifice in whom the Father is well pleased.

A.) In this phrase of “well pleased” there may even be a hint of sacrificial language. Remember in Genesis 4:4 it was said of God

And the Lord was pleased with Abel and his offering…

In Philippians 4:18 God being pleased is connected to a sacrificial aroma

18 … I am full, having received from Epaphroditus the things sent from you, a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God.

In the Old Testament, sacrifices, done in faith, were pleasing to God. Christ is the one in whom the Father is “well pleased.” As such this “Well Pleased” language may be foreshadowing the work of Christ as the sacrifice that the Father is well-pleased with unto the turning away of His wrath.

B.) This affirmation of the Father from heaven confirms Jesus identification as the servant of the Lord spoken of in Isaiah 42:1

Behold, my servant: I will stay upon him: mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth: I have put my Spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.

This same Servant of the Lord we learn then later in Isaiah is a suffering servant who is wounded, bruised, and chastised for His people. As such, this identification of the Son in connection with the Father being “well-pleased” harbors Old Testament hints that the Father’s pleasure is based upon the work the Son will preform.

But in the suggestion of the Lord Christ’s humiliation with this phrase “My Son in whom I am well pleased” there is also the suggestion of His eventual exaltation as we see this Sonship language used to trumpet His Kingship.

Psalm 2:6 — “Even I have set my King upon Zion mine holy mountain. 7 I will declare the decree: that is, the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee. 8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the ends of the earth for thy possession. 9 Thou shalt crush them with a scepter of iron, and break them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”

So, yes there are strong undertones in the Baptism of the Lord Christ of His Humiliation but in that song of humiliation there remains a delicate sub-theme in the music of His coming Exaltation.

IV.) Event Communicates that the Lord Christ is the One in whom is found the New Creation

(Compare Spirit hovering in Genesis 1:2 w/ Spirit descending in Mt. 3:16)

And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

16 And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him,[b] and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him;

Just as the Spirit overs over the Creation unto the end of work of Creation, just so the Spirit is involved in the work of the New Creation that has come in Christ. With the descending of the Spirit upon the Lord Christ we find the promised new age is dawning with the coming of He who is the New Creation.

Consistent with this we find the themes of coming of the Kingdom. John’s message is “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand.” Just so, shortly after the Baptism of Christ, our Lord Christ can preach the same message. In Christ, the Kingdom of God has come. In Christ the New Creation is present. And the means of entering into this new Creation — this coming Kingdom — is by repentance and by being united with He who is the Kingdom and the new Creation.

Here we must remember our “Now, Not Yet,” hermeneutic. In the arrival of Christ the Kingdom and New Creation has come in Principle and yet it continues to come progressively as more and more men are swept into the reality of that present and coming Kingdom.

So, the Baptism of the Lord Christ is a significant event in the unfolding of Redemptive History and it is a significant event for us personally. In the unfolding of Redemptive History it is the entry point wherein Christ is anointed a Public Person and a Representative for His people. In the unfolding of Redemptive History the long promised Kingdom and New Creation has come. It is a significant event for us personally because we can be confident that in Christ’s Baptism He identifies with us and so can be our sacrifice, our sin-bearer and our High Priest. It is significant for us because when understood properly it comforts and assures us in our personal struggle with sin. We may fail in overcoming but Christ as our representative has overcome for us.


So we might ask, what is our proper response to the Lord Christ identifying with His people? Might I offer that the proper response of gratitude is to identify with Christ? The Lord Christ identified with us in our sins and we might well respond in gratitude by identifying with Him in the extension of His Kingdom.

Trading burdens in the covenant is central to the economy of Gods kingdom. “Bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ.” He bore the burden of our sins and we bear the burden of seeking His kingdom, a much lighter burden than our sins.


Random notes

Baptism — Baptism was not new to John’s ministry. In the OT it was a means by which there was a setting apart to a unique and holy purpose. This idea of setting apart by means of washing goes back to priestly ablutions (washings) prior to offering sacrifices (Leviticus 16:4 , 16:24 ).

4 He shall put on the holy linen tunic, and the linen undergarments shall be next to his body, and he shall be girded with the linen sash and attired with the linen turban (these are holy garments). Then he shall bathe his body in water and put them on…. 24.) He shall bathe his body with water in a holy place and put on his clothes, and come forth and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people and make atonement for himself and for the people.

So, the OT had categories for purification rites accomplished by water. When John takes this up, the Hebrew people would have had categories to understand what John the Baptist was doing.

This morning we will be considering

I.) The Opening of the Heavens in the Baptism account
II.) The Baptism proper
III.) The Voice and the Words of the Father in the Baptism Account
IV.) The Spirit as Dove in the Baptism Account
I.) Heaven Opens

The heavens were opened (Greek Schizo) torn open, the same word used in Mark 15:38 ”  And the veil of the Temple was rent (Torn) in twain, from the top to the bottom.” At His baptism heaven is suddenly torn open and the Father and the Holy Spirit come together to bless and affirm what the Son was doing and about to do in His ministry.

So, “opening” is too mild of a word here to convey the idea of the word Mark chooses. You are familiar with the Greek word schizo from its use in psychiatric terms such as schizophrenic. Outside that specialized use, the word schizo means to rend, to tear apart, to rip open.  What is happening here in the Baptism of the Lord Christ is in keeping with Isaiah’s prayer,
“Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down!” (Isaiah 64:1)

  • With the rending of the Heavens in Jesus’ Baptism Mark is demonstrating that God has come down in the Person of Christ.

  • So, again, Mark uses the word twice, once near the beginning of his Gospel and once near the end.  When a unique word is used in this way,  Theologians sometimes refer to it as an inclusio. An inclusio is a literary technique by which the author creates theological “book ends” at the beginning and end of the text for added significance and meaning. This tearing for St. Mark represents the precise beginning (the baptism) and the precise end (the death) of the earthly career of Jesus.

    The ripping open of the heavens is a figurative way of saying that the barrier between heaven and earth is being removed and that God is coming among us through his Spirit-anointed Son. God has come near to His fallen world to heal it in Christ.

     Concerning the Temple we hear,     “And the curtain of the temple was torn (schizo) in two, from top to bottom” (Mark 15:38).  The Temple curtain was a symbolic separation of sinful people from the holy God.

    What adds interest to this “tearing” inclusio is that the ancient writer Josephus tells us what was pictured on the curtain that was later torn:

    Portrayed on this tapestry was a panorama of the entire heavens….

    You see the outer veil of the Jerusalem temple was actually one huge image of the starry sky! Thus, upon encountering Mark’s statement that “the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom,” any of his readers who had ever seen the temple or heard it described would instantly have seen in their mind’s eye an image of the heavens being torn, and would immediately have been drawn back to Mark’s earlier description of the heavens being torn at the baptism.

    So Mark’s Gospel is framed by the ripping open of barriers between God and humanity, the barriers that keep God from coming to us, the barriers that keep us from coming to God. This removing of the barriers is what happens through Jesus Christ. It is a result much to be desired.

    II.) The Baptism itself — The Why

    A.) Fulfilling the Law Requirement For The Change In Priesthood
    Jesus is, emphatically, our Great High Priest.  As High Priest the Lord Christ is the fulfillment of all that the Aaronic line shadowed. Aaron’s line was the echo while Christ is the original.

    The Aaronic priesthood which was shadow anticipating Christ as High Priest belonged to  the tribe of Levi, and were the descendants of Aaron.

    Jesus belonged to another tribe, ‘of which,’ as Paul says, ‘no man gave attendance at the altar. For it is evident our Lord sprang out of Judah, of which tribe, Moses spake nothing concerning the priesthood.’ Heb. vii. 13, 14, and in verse twelve, he says, ‘For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.’

    The point here is that there cannot be a change to the Priesthood without there also, at the same time, being a change to the law as it pertains to this matter.

    Now, when the Aaronic priesthood was first instituted, the tribe to which it pertained was, in a formal manner, consecrated, set apart to this high calling.

    Numbers 8:5-7″ ‘And the Lord spake unto Moses, Take the Levites from among the children of Israel and cleanse them. And thus shalt thou do unto them to cleanse them: SPRINKLE WATER OF PURIFYING UPON THEM.’ ”

    So now we have this great change occurring where another Tribe is given the Priestly task and we should expect the new High Priest to fulfill this requirement.

    And Jesus himself hints that this is what is going on when he says to John the Baptist in the Matthew account,

    14 But John earnestly put him back, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?

    15 Then Jesus answering, said to him, Let be now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill [t]all righteousness. So he suffered him.

    Now, remember, the fulfilling of righteousness has to do with Christ relationship to the Law. Something in the law has to be fulfilled.

    What is the righteousness that needs to be fulfilled of which our Lord Christ speaks?

    I would contend that the righteousness that needs to be fulfilled … the conformity to the Law that God strictly required, is the consecration of the Lord Christ to this office of High Priest that was previously only owned by the Aaronic line.

    What bends us in this direction?

    P.– “It is CERTAIN, according to Jesus own words, that there was some law with which he must comply. This is why he spoke about the necessity of His Baptism so that all righteousness might be fulfilled.

    “Again, it is CERTAIN that in complying with the law, it necessitated the use of water.

    “Again, it is CERTAIN that he felt that he must comply with that law, because he was entering upon his priestly work, not as a descendant of Aaron, or of the tribe of Levi, but as a member of another tribe — Judah.

    “Again, it is CERTAIN that the law quoted was for the very purpose for which Jesus wished to be baptized.

    “Again, it is CERTAIN that if this is not the law to which referred, then no such law was in existence.

    “Again, it is CERTAIN that if there was no such law on record, there would have been no propriety in Jesus saying it was necessary for him to be baptized to comply with the law.

    So, one thing the Baptism accomplishes is it uses the same ceremony that set apart and consecrated the Aaronic Priesthood  to set apart and consecrate the Priesthood of Christ as coming from a different tribe. And the law that was changed that the book of Hebrews speaks of is that the ceremonial law has been fulfilled in Christ.

    And keep in mind that this consecration was done, both in the OT with the Levites and with the Lord Christ in Baptism, by sprinkling and not immersion.

    B.) God’s Second Adam Leading His People through Another Exodus

    Leaning upon a reading of the text that is harmony with all of the OT we might observe that just as Israel was led by Moses and had to go through the sea at the Exodus to enter the promise land, and just as the second generation re-enacted that water passage into the Promised land with Joshua and through the Jordan river, so now that the one has come who will lead His people into the New Creation He brings with Him,  there is a need for a water passage Exodus to identify with the greater Moses and the greater Joshua as the Lord Christ leads His people into the greater promised land — the New Creation.

    Jesus Baptism signifies thus not only the beginning of a new Exodus but also a new creation, as he has come to reverse the fall and the curse.

    III.) The Voice & The Words
    We are in the Epiphany season of the Church calendar and Epiphany begins with Christ’s Baptism and the Father speaking from heaven,

    Baptism —  Mark 1:11 —  Then there was a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

    , and on the Church calendar Epiphany ends with the Transfiguration and the same voice from heaven (Mark 9:7).

    Transfiguration — Mark 9:And there was a cloud that shadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.

    There is on other time the Gospels find the Father speaking audibly to the Son.

    A few days prior to death — John 12:28– Then there was a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

    In two of these three occasions the Father announces that He is “well pleased” with the Son. There may be overtones of sacrifice in that language. Consider that in the OT this idea of God being pleased often comes in connection to the sacrifices.

    On sixteen different occasions in the book of Leviticus alone, an “aroma” is mentioned as something pleasing to the Lord. Specifically, the aroma of a sacrifice is important to God. What makes the sacrifice pleasing is that the sacrifice represents the substitutionary atonement for sin.

    Genesis 8:21 — Noah’s burnt sacrifice upon leaving  the ark is said to be a “pleasing aroma” to God.

    Leviticus 1:9 13 says, “The priest is to burn all of it on the altar. It is a burnt offering, a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

    Leviticus 2:2 — Despite the fact that this offering involved grain rather than meat, it had “an aroma pleasing to the LORD.”

    Leviticus 23:18 (Feast of weeks which focused on Redemption of sinners) —  “Present with this bread seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams. They will be a burnt offering to the LORD, together with their grain offerings and drink offerings—a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.”

    (Ezekiel 6:13, ESV) — Offerings made to false gods were also described as having a “pleasing aroma” as well—to the idols, at least

    That the Lord Christ was being seen as a “well pleasing” sacrifice, in the Baptism context, is underscored by St. John’s Gospel, where just before what transpires is that John the Baptist cries out, in reference to the Lord Christ, that he is ‘the lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world. So, the Father is well pleased with the Son because the Son is the propitiation for Sin.

    The New Testament reveals Christ as the final sacrifice for sin, the ultimate propitiation: “Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:2).

    Jesus, the Son of God, was the only One who could provide the eternally pleasing sacrifice. He alone is the One of whom the Father says, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased” (Mark 1:11).

    And on top of all that we find echos of this “well pleased” language in one of the suffering servant passages in the OT.

    Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
        my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
    I have put my Spirit upon him;
        he will bring forth justice to the nations.  (Is. 42:1)

    So we find this divine witness of the Father’s voice three times in the ministry of the Lord Christ. Once at the beginning of Christ’s Ministry where He is consecrated unto High Priestly work where he will offer up Himself as our Sacrifice. Once at the clearest demonstration of Christ’s divinity as the fulfillment of the law and the Prophets — both of which pointed to the Lord Christ’s death. And once just before He accomplishes His work on the cross. At each of these speaking the Father places His imprimatur of approval upon the Son’s set apart-ness to be our substitutionary atonement.

    IV.) The Spirit as Dove

    Of course Christians have rightly seen in the Baptism of the Lord Christ a proof for the Trinitarian Character of God. The Son is Baptized, the Father Speaks and the Spirit descends as a dove. Note the importance that the three are working in agreement and harmony. This is the character of the Tri-oneness of God.

    Considering the Spirit, it is not the first time we see the Spirit in the context of water and creation

    A.) Genesis — And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

    The picture of a separation of waters in tandem with the mention of the Spirit of God placing people in a new land seems to go all the way back to Genesis.

    Gen 1:9 ¶ God said again, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

    Then our first parents are made in God’s image to be fruitful and multiply and have dominion.

    “The same pattern occurs with Noah, where toward the end of the flood we find Gen. 8:1-3a teaching ‘God caused a wind [ruah, often rendered as Spirit] to pass over the earth, and the water subsided …. and the water receded steadily from the earth.” Thus Noah and his family were able to live on dry land again to the end of being fruitful, multiplying and having dominion.  The flood was, as you will recall, a starting afresh. God took Noah and His people, through the waters to the safety of a cleansed promised land.

    A new and better covenant comes and a greater Noah is on the scene and this greater Noah must rescue His people also. And so the greater Noah goes through the waters to a new Creation just as the lesser Noah had, and He goes through the waters to a New Creation that is provided in His person. After going through the water He takes dominion and multiplies by the way of calling disciples.

    And just as Noah goes through the flood and sends out a dove, so God sends His Spirit as a Dove to hover over the waters and His divinely appointed Covenant head who is bringing His people into a new creation.

    So, the Baptism of the Lord Christ is not only a re-play of the waters of the Red Sea and the waters of the Jordan unto the promised land it is a recreation in light of the recreation found in the Noahic story — complete with the sent Dove hovering over both the waters and the New Creation.

Author: jetbrane

I am a Pastor of a small Church in Mid-Michigan who delights in my family, my congregation and my calling. I am postmillennial in my eschatology. Paedo-Calvinist Covenantal in my Christianity Reformed in my Soteriology Presuppositional in my apologetics Familialist in my family theology Agrarian in my regional community social order belief Christianity creates culture and so Christendom in my national social order belief Mythic-Poetic / Grammatical Historical in my Hermeneutic Pre-modern, Medieval, & Feudal before Enlightenment, modernity, & postmodern Reconstructionist / Theonomic in my Worldview One part paleo-conservative / one part micro Libertarian in my politics Systematic and Biblical theology need one another but Systematics has pride of place Some of my favorite authors, Augustine, Turretin, Calvin, Tolkien, Chesterton, Nock, Tozer, Dabney, Bavinck, Wodehouse, Rushdoony, Bahnsen, Schaeffer, C. Van Til, H. Van Til, G. H. Clark, C. Dawson, H. Berman, R. Nash, C. G. Singer, R. Kipling, G. North, J. Edwards, S. Foote, F. Hayek, O. Guiness, J. Witte, M. Rothbard, Clyde Wilson, Mencken, Lasch, Postman, Gatto, T. Boston, Thomas Brooks, Terry Brooks, C. Hodge, J. Calhoun, Llyod-Jones, T. Sowell, A. McClaren, M. Muggeridge, C. F. H. Henry, F. Swarz, M. Henry, G. Marten, P. Schaff, T. S. Elliott, K. Van Hoozer, K. Gentry, etc. My passion is to write in such a way that the Lord Christ might be pleased. It is my hope that people will be challenged to reconsider what are considered the givens of the current culture. Your biggest help to me dear reader will be to often remind me that God is Sovereign and that all that is, is because it pleases him.

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