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Rethinking the Church: Baptist Distinctives  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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baptism is often the test of obedience. He who believes in Christ takes Him to be his Master as well as his Savior. And Christ, therefore, says to him, “Go and do so-and-so.” If the man refuses to do it, he thereby proves that he does not intend to be the disciple of the Master. “Oh!” says one, “you know that baptism is a nonessential.” Have I not begged you to cease such idle and wick- ed talk as that? Have you a servant? Do you go to business early in the morning? Do you like a cup of tea at six o’clock, before you start for the city? The maid does not bring it to you and you ask, “Why have I not had my tea brought to me?” “Oh,” she answers, “it is non-essential. You can do your business very well without that cup of tea.” Let such a reply as that be repeated, or let it be given only once, and I will tell you what will be non-essential! It will be non-essential for you to keep that girl any longer in your house! You will want another servant, for you will say, “Clearly she is no servant of mine! She sets herself up as the mistress of the house, for she begins to judge my commands and to say that this one is essential, and that one is not essential.” What do you mean by, “non-essential”? “I mean that I can be saved without being baptized.” Will you dare to say that wicked sentence over again? “I mean that I can be saved without being baptized.” You evil creature! So you will do nothing that Christ commands if you can be saved without doing it? You are hardly worth saving at all! A man who always needs to be paid for what he does—whose one idea of religion is that he will do what is essential to his own salvation—only cares to save his own skin and insinuates Christ may go where He likes! Clearly, you are no servant of His! You need to be saved from such a disreputable, miserable state of mind—and may the Lord save you!
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