(Words of Jesus in Matthew 28:18-20)
What a wonderful baptismal service last Sunday (20th May) as Iva, Linus and Martin were baptised as believers in Jesus Christ. We celebrate with them and bless God for their testimonies of faith in Jesus which they shared with us! For an understanding of baptism read Romans 6:1b-6:11a. Believer`s Baptism isn`t an add-on to our faith but a public expression (testimony) of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Baptism doesn’t save us but is a badge of discipleship publicly saying God has dealt with my sin, He has buried it. I have died to sin and my life is completely different because I am a new person! The old has gone and the new has come in Christ. He changed my life forever and believer’s baptism is giving a picture of the greater event that has already taken place, baptized into His body, the Church.
- 1 Corinthians 12:11-13 (The Message): “By means of His One Spirit, we all said goodbye to our partial and piecemeal lives. We each used to independently call our own shots, but then we entered into a large and integrated life in which He has the final say in everything. (This is what is proclaimed in word and action when we were baptized).”
In Believer’s Baptism I am telling the story of what happened when I became a follower of Jesus Christ. I am a new person. We are innocent of all charges, have a new identity because He has dealt with our sin, our sin nature, our old self and we have been set free from the power of sin. Called to leave the old life forever as we are God’s “New Creation”.
We are expected to be witnesses to the new life that only comes through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ which means a radical change in lifestyle, character, attitudes, etc., for we are “in Christ.” We have moved on from saying “no” to God to saying “yes” to God.
There are too many today who are inoculated against these truths. We protect ourselves from scrutiny by not reading and studying what God says in the Bible and in public we perform rather than really live! We become comfortable with our ritual, our behavior, our habits, our friendships, etc. We have failed to bring them to the Cross and realize why Christ died and what it means for His followers. We have been set free in Christ. He is alive!
- Romans 6:11, “Count yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.”