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Baptism 2

Baptismal Bible Study  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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What is so special and unique about Jesus' death?

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The Bible clearly says that Jesus’ death was special and unique—so much so that it saves us from our sins. Let’s read two important Bible passages:
“But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” (, NLT)
“Here’s a word you can take to heart and depend on: Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. I’m proof—Public Sinner Number One”. (, The Message)
If we understand this correctly, we will know why your getting baptized mirrors symbolically Jesus’ death. More importantly, you get to decide if you really want to get baptized. We will need to visit a few Bible passages to come up with a good picture.
How in the world would one death save or rescue us from our sins—much less from anything? Someone has said, “I don’t need to be rescued. I haven’t committed any crime, and I’m not drowning either. I’m doing just fine, thank you!”
If we understand this correctly, we will know why your getting baptized mirrors symbolically Jesus’ death. More importantly, you get to decide if you really want to get baptized. We will need to visit a few Bible passages to come up with a good picture.
Let me summarize the Bible’s Big Story so we can understand why Jesus’ death is so important, and why we need to die with him in order to really live.
Dear Parents: I’ve annotated each of the six points below for you to assist your child in understanding the big picture. Perhaps in your family devotions, you can go over them one point at a time.
d: I’ve annoted
God created us to be like him in glory. A person’s glory is his or herhonor, character, and happiness. We’re supposed to mirror God’s glory in some small ways.
Genesis 1:27 NIV
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
Genesis 1:
Note: , emphasis on “image,” or “likeness.” God created humans to reflect His person and His life. Everything that God is, we are to be—in some lesser form. The big difference is that while His is original and uncreated, ours is reflective and derived.
Humankind chose to forsake God’s glory for its own, which God knows to be suicide. (Put a Bible passage here: ________________________)
While God respects people’s choices, He d
God
Note: , emphasis on v. 23. Key words here are “glory,” “exchange,” and “image.” Humanity “exchanged” God’s “glory” for lesser glories, which is what “images” are—caricatures (grotesque imitations) of God. This is an excellent scripture to understand —Adam and Eve “exchanged” God’s kind of persona and life for their own kind of person and life.
Romans 1:23 NIV
and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
God
Because no human being has ever lived for God completely from start to finish— and God knows we don’t want to (and can’t do it) anyway—He sent His son to demonstrate what this life looks like. (Put a Bible passage here: ________________________)
John 17:3 NIV
Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
Note the beautiful rendition of below. I’ve underlined some key phrases you may want to unpack with your kids:
“But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.”
But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.
Eugene H. Peterson, The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2005), .
Jesus’ life was so contrary to human ways, that humanity killed him. By giving up his life, Jesus opens up the only way back to God. (Put a Bible passage here: ________________________)
Colossians 1:27 NIV
To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
Note: With as the backdrop, means so much more. God the Father didn’t just send Jesus to earth to get him “killed” for us, but to provide us with a far better option than what we chose for ourselves. Eternal life with God is not just a never ending life. It is God’s kind of life which he’s always wanted to share with you—filled with integrity, goodness, and happiness—and, O yeah, it also never ends.
The way back to God is simply that God promises to accept every person who accepts Jesus’ life and death, by crediting it as if it were your own. (Put a Bible passage here: ________________________)
Note: To “give your life to Jesus” means that you accept that God gave you the life you cannot live, as a pure gift. By "giving your life to Jesus, you are giving up your own kind of life, and put on his. This is what you accept when you get baptized. This “giving up” and “putting on” is what refers to as you “dying” with Jesus and you being “brought back to life” with Jesus. Baptism captures this symbolism beautifully. And it proclaims to the world that one more person has decided to give up self, and start living God’s life. This is real life. Observe and Eugene Peterson’s excellent wording: “The person in right standing before God by trusting him, really lives” (comma and emphasis mine).
After you accept Jesus, you and God begin to walk together. Through the Spirit, God will slowly help you become in reality who you already are by faith. (Put a Bible passage here: ________________________)
Note: This is now the part where you as a newly “reborn” Christian, start to walk with the Holy Spirit. God’s Spirit goes in at the very center of your being where decisions are made, and sits in the driver’s seat with you. He will teach you how to “drive” in such a way that God’s glory is fully reflected in you. is an excellent text to use here.
Then God teaches you, through the Spirit, how to slowly regain the glory of God in your life.
In our succeeding lessons, we will put Bible passages alongside each part of this Big Story. I’ve put blank spaces alongside each point above so you and your family can give it a try. We’ll go over these passages next week. Have fun doing it with your family!
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