Believing the Promises of God - in His Word

Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed… Without weakening in his faith… Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what He had promised. ~ Romans 4 [selected 18-21]

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Life Of Christ

This Sunday our church will celebrate another Life of Christ Sunday (we hold two per year). The service will include, Worship, Scripture Reading, Preaching, Baby Dedications, Baptisms, and a Communion Celebration.

Matthew 3:11-16 (selected)
11"I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come One who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

The Baptism of Jesus

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter Him, saying, "I need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?"15 Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Then John consented.16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on Him. 17 And a voice from heaven said,"This is My Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased." [emphasis mine]

Mark 1: 4-5
4 And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5 The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.

Mark 16:9, 15-16
15 He [Jesus] said to them,
"Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.
16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved,
but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

On Baptism

I am encouraging others to come forward to follow the LORD'S command (to be baptized) - as well as His very own example when He asked John the Baptist to do it for Him. John was reluctant - but Jesus said it was necessary (now) to fulfill all righteousness.

Some people think that Baptism is an "option". They don't see it as the command that it is. I don't wish to split hairs over this issue. When someone comes to Christ and receives Him as Savior - the very next step should be - to be baptized. As in the time of the early church - people were baptized (in public) almost immediately upon receiving Christ's forgiveness. They didn't pray about it or wait 3 years - they did it right then - to give testimony to their family and friends of their new life in Christ. And they were joyful and happy to do it!

What a special day this Sunday will be - especially if those who God has called to Himself - will follow Him one more step into the waters of Baptism. From Death to life - the waters are a symbol of the old life and the new - of sins forgiven and eternal life rewarded.

May God bless all those who are obedient to His command.

Choosing JOY,


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