Sunday, March 13, 2011

Baptisms

Are awesome!!! I was so excited to get to go to a baptism a week ago at our church.  There were 3 people there who were baptized.  Now, just a few heads up.  In our church we believe in "Believer's baptism."  That means no baptizing babies, no forcing people to be baptized.  Baptism is a choice that those being baptized make.  People must first confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior of their lives and meet with our Pastor before they are baptized.  Being Lord means that you have given your life over to Jesus.  He is now the driver, you are the passenger.  You are the tool He is going to use to bring His Word to the world.  Being Savior means that He has saved you.  What has He saved you from?  Well, He's saved you from your sins.  The Bible says in Romans 3:23, " for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."  That means to miss the mark, it's an archery term. That means, we can't get to Heaven on our own, where God's Glory resides.  We also find in Romans 6:23, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." So the wages (your earnings) for sin, is DEATH.  This does not mean physical death but spiritual death.  In that death we deserve to go to Hell.  Thankfully, God doesn't give us what we deserve. It doesn't end there, the GIFT of God is ETERNAL LIFE in CHRIST JESUS.  God gives us a gift when He gives eternal life in Christ Jesus.  The three that were baptized at our church recently were publicly stating that they have received this free gift and that they have surrendered their lives to Christ.  


With that said, I want to also acknowledge that baptism does NOT save someone from their sins.  Romans 10:9 tells us how we will be saved.  "That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."   That's it.  No other way to heaven but through Jesus Christ, which He says also in John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." 


I would also like to point out that baptism does have to occur AFTER accepting Jesus.  In Acts 8:26-40, Peter comes across an Ethiopian eunuch.  The Ethiopian is reading scriptures but can't understand it, so Peter starts with the passage the former is reading and presents the good news of Jesus Christ.  Then the Ethiopian says, “Look, here is water. Why shouldn’t I be baptized?” Then they went down INTO the water.  In our video you'll notice that Robin is taken down into the water.  It is a picture of what happens when I person is saved (receives Christ).  Romans 6:4 says it best, "We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life." When we accept Jesus, we are a new Creation, a new creature, the old has passed away.  What an exciting change!!! 


I asked Robin, of our youth group, if I could post her baptism on my blog and she gave me permission.  So here is Robin's baptism.  I hope it is an encouragement to you.  The sound isn't great.  If you'd like to know what she says, I can post it in a later post.  


video

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