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“In Whom I Am Well Pleased”

Do you want to please God? John the Baptist taught his followers how. John had given up the comforts of life, preaching from the wilderness and eating locusts and honey. But adopting that lifestyle was not what John asked people to do. So what did he ask them to do?

God wants you to repent, he told them, and be baptized. And people from all around Judea obeyed. Baptizing them with water, John helped people wash away the weight, the guilt, the burden of sins. “Prepare ye the way of the Lord,” he taught, “make his paths straight” (Mark 1:3).

In John’s era, kings would proclaim a visit to distant cities, and their subjects would work to build and prepare roads for the rulers’ arrival. They would fill holes, level hills, and cut straight roads through winding paths as a sign of respect and honor.

In a similar way, John tirelessly worked to proclaim the Lord’s coming; he urged people to prepare, for the kingdom of God was at hand. And one day the Savior arrived.

Jesus traveled from Galilee so that He too could be baptized by John. This shocked the humble prophet. “Comest thou to me?” (Matthew 3:14), he asked. After all, John had told the multitudes that Jesus was far greater than he, so mighty that John wasn’t even worthy to fasten the Master’s shoes. Why would the Lord, who had never sinned, need to be baptized?

Jesus’s answer was simple: “Thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). God has commanded all to be baptized. So Jesus too would prepare Himself for the Father.

There are things, like baptism, that God asks you to do today—commandments that He gives. At first, some commandments might seem undesirable or maybe you can’t see their purpose. But Jesus knew why it was important to be obedient—and those around Him witnessed His willingness to obey God.

As Jesus was baptized and came up from the water, the heavens opened and the Spirit of God descended in the form of a dove. Jesus, John, and all who were there heard God’s voice from heaven: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17).

You also please God through your obedience to His commandments. Committing to pray, repent, and accept God’s will before your own shows your willingness to fulfill all righteousness. You’re making His paths straight and preparing yourself to experience His love more fully in your life.

“And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; . . . and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you.”—Mosiah 2:22

When God gives a commandment, He blesses those who obey. Sometimes it may seem hard to see the results in your own life, but the Book of Mormon shows that this pattern is clear. Read and learn from stories that still apply today. Request your free copy of the Book of Mormon.