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Baptism Sunday

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Why we Baptise

Many different Christian faiths baptize differently. Some sprinkle. Others baptize infants. Others wait until your an adult. Some make you take classes and other’s don’t. So why do we baptize in full immersion? Why do we get baptized at all? and What does it mean?
In order to understand baptism you have to understand salvation. Salvation isn’t just a prayer. It’s a lifestyle. It’s a full surrender to God and his ways. It’s living according to biblical standards not that we are told what not to do, but rather we know what isn’t beneficial for our relationship with Christ.
Jesus loves each and every one of us and we are told through the promise of Jeremiah that we have a purpose and plan. Carl Harris, an evangelist we met with this week at Mill City, states; If you aren’t dead then all you need is a renewed vision. People get their purposes many places, but there is only one true plan for each of us. Although you can use a pot for many things it’s maker will tell that a pot is meant to cook with. We cannot be defined by anything other than the creator of life. To be defined apart from the creator one may be found useful, but you will never reach your full potential or understand joy in all circumstances. As Christians we don’t follow Christ out of obligation, although that would be reason enough as he died for our sins. We follow Christ out of the abundance of our relationship with Him. Jesus is the only God among many proclaimed gods that laid his life down for those whom he loves. Allah demands obediance, not love. Buddah demands that we abandon all for the sake of new knowledge. Atheism demands that there is no god and in that no real reason to live or die. Postmodernism demands that we have to over throw the man so that we might obtain happiness and Millenialism demands that we must accept only what is acceptable and true happiness can only be found if everyone agrees on everything.
Some ask why I received Christ as my Lord and savior and to save you from my testimony I will state this: everything in this life besides God has left me empty and searching for more. There weren’t enough drugs, alcohol, willing women, or adrenaline to help me maintain the peace I find in God. Are there sacrifices yes.
Romans 6:4 ESV
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
We must die to our own desires or the desires of the flesh, but if we are honest those things which we seek and desire don’t and can’t fulfill us the Jesus can. I can never sacrifice more than Jesus can give. All other faiths demand things and return very little if anything at all. All though our lives might seem like a high cost the reward is a new life.
John 10:10 ESV
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Baptism by full immersion may seem silly or like nothing more than a bath, but to God and to us it’s so much more. The act of going under the water symbolizes ones death. We die to our own desires recogonizing that were are meant for a higher calling. We are children of God. The raising from the water symobilzes our hope that we aren’t reincarnated back to a miserable world, but that in our physical death our spirit will rise into glory with Jesus Christ and experience the way life was supposed to be prior to sin, death, and sickness.
We know that at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry he was baptised by water. It is an outward symbol of an inward decision.
I have been asked why the pond instead of a nice warm baptismal the church.
Luke 15:10 ESV
Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
When one person recieves salvation Heaven rejoices. There is a grandiose party when someone turns their life over to Jesus. Since baptism is a representation of repentance and acceptance of God I believe the service should also represent Heaven. One that is a party. So please feel free to clap, shout, and dance during the service. If those in the water represent salvation than those on land represent the divine party in Heaven.
Why we don’t baptise infants or little children. 4 out of 5 of my kiddos arebeing baptised today because 4 out of 5 understand what it means to surrender to God and follow his ways. The believe Jesus died for the forgiveness of their sins. They desire a relationship with Christ and they understand what it takes to maintain that relationship and that walk with Him. One of my children is too young to full understand all that God has done. Does that make her anyless? No, but we must give her the time to learn. Love is a choice. To love my wife is a choice just as to love God is a choice. We believe that one has to be old enough to make that choice.
Christ freely gave his life for us while we were yet sinners. So we must freely give our life to him. There has to be a willingness and a desire to follow Christ in order to accept him. So does that mean if my youngest daughter dies before she can make that choice herself that she will go to hell? No! we believe that God knows the heart. He is not only loving, but is also just. He is fair in all things as his word states. We believe every baby that died prior to having the ability to make the choice is with Jesus. There are scriptures to back this belief up, although I don’t have time this morning. But I will sit down with anyone who likes and discuss this further. I just don’t want anyone here wondering or thinking that if their infant or toddler isn’t baptised that they will die. There is a place for them in eternity. We are found in the arms of Christ until we make the choice to reject that his love, his death, and his resurrection.
If you’re alive today there is still time to get receive Jesus. The only time it’s too late is when you take the final ride in that pine box. Until death—you can always receive life.
These ones today made the choice to recieve life. So in the likeness of Jesus they will make thier public profession of faith and belief in Jesus. be baptised unto to death and risen into new life. Let’s celebrate life today!
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