What a great day at Center Hill! On Sunday, we baptized 5 obedient followers of Jesus Christ. Our morning message was on the topic of baptism, followed by communion, followed by the outdoor baptism. A great day in the Lord, in His word, and in fellowship with His church.
The testimonies given by those who were baptized, revealed a true understanding of biblical baptism and were quite moving. All referred to their personal conversion by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ and their desire to be obedient to their Lord and Saviour in believer’s baptism. All understood that their salvation was not dependent on their baptism but was a step of obedience in following Christ’s command in the Great Commission to make disciples and to baptize them.
As encouraging as it was to see these 5 identify publicly with their Lord, as pastor I was extremely encouraged that over 60 people were in attendance at the baptismal site to witness their obedience. Witnessing others being baptized allows each of us to reflect on our own baptism and what it represents. As we grow in the knowledge of our Lord and His scriptures we gain a deeper, more meaningful and greater appreciation of what actually occurred at our own conversions. Our baptisms are pictures of our own deaths, in Christ, as we were united spiritually with Him in His death and burial. Praise God that we are also united with Him in His subsequent resurrection and thereby our own resurrection to walk in a newness life. (Romans 6:1-4 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 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.) Notice that Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father and that is the same power which enables us to walk in newness. New life, old life is dead. We walk in a new direction empowered by the glory of the Father. What an encouragement!
Reflect often on your own baptism as you grow deeper in your faith. What a rich, deep understanding we gain of our salvation as the symbolism of our baptism grips us. Allow the truth of all that occurred at your own salvation to cause you to rejoice in Him, each time you witness the obedience of one in believer’s baptism.
soli deo gloria
(watch for pictures soon on Our People page)