A. Dean Mckenzie

Symbolizing repentance, the baptism that John administered required people to first confess their sins. This practice parallels the Qumran community’s ritual washings, which similarly required repentance. Jesus himself came to John for baptism, because, he said, “it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). This event provides an appropriate decoration for baptismal fonts, such as this famous cast-bronze example in the Church of Saint Barthelemy, Liege, Belgium. Produced by Renier de Huy between 1107 and 1118, this is one of the earliest dated fonts for which we know the artist’s name.