Woke Up at 3am (part 2)...
Hi everyone! Sorry for the break, but since I was up so early, I had to take a nap! (Sucks getting old, right?) Just kidding, of course. I actually had a nice weekend.
Carlyn and I had a vendor booth at the Del Mar Race Track on Sunday. It was the 14th Annual Ladies (and Gents) Day at the Races, and eLiveLife.com, whom we have partnered with for event marketing opportunities, got us a booth there. It was a long shot because the people were there for fun and not to talk about the struggles in their marriage. But it's amazing how many people stopped to ask about what we did, and some even reached out for help. We will be following up with them.
Anyway, we were half way in our explanation about BAPTISM. The first part of baptism is being dunked under water, so now it's time to be raised out of the water!
Here's a quick review:
B - Buried with Him. Of course, when you were dunked in the water, this represented being dead and buried with Christ. Similarly, this represented Jonah when he was in the whale (Matt 12:38-41) and when Noah was in the Ark (1 Pet 3:20-21).
A - Alive Again. Isn’t it great that you weren’t kept under water, but you were raised? Similarly, Jesus didn’t remain dead, but lived again… forever! The great news is that because you have aligned yourself with Christ, you too were raised and will live forever with Him!
P - Predestined & Chosen. And all of this was decided before creation! God was thinking of you even back then AND God chose you! Let that sink in… out of all the people that He would bring into the world, He chose you to be with Him forever!
T - Test the Word. Once we are raised, we are to live as if we were chosen and alive. As a matter of fact, Paul said we are to no longer "conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will" (Romans 12:2). As we are made aware of God's will for our lives, we are to just do it and see God's purpose and blessing for teaching that to us!
I - Inheritance Guaranteed. As a result of your spiritual baptism in Christ, the Holy Spirit permanently resides in you. Therefore, you are permanently His! Don’t let anyone confuse you on this one. You are forever saved! Unfortunately, you will not always live like you are saved, which is a human defect, but this does not change your status – a saved saint of God Almighty! John said it best, "And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life" (1 John 5:11-13).
S - Saved to Share. “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth!” One of these days you will be married and have (or adopt) kids, but God was also asking us to have spiritual kids too – and you can do that now! You are saved to share the good news – the reason you believed and got baptized. Don’t be like most of us Christians and over think this, just share the goodness of God in your lives with people He brings in your life. There is no greater honor than being an messenger of Christ! "We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Cor 5:20-21).
M - Made for a Purpose. As you grow in the Lord, you will see how God has designed you and molded you for a special assignment for the betterment of society, the furtherance of the Gospel and the preparation for the Kingdom of God! In the meantime, keep serving in different ways in church, on short-term mission trips, and in community projects. God will eventually clarify your ‘purpose’ through developing passions with an eternal perspective. Note: Don’t be discouraged if you can’t narrow things down quickly. Even areas you serve that don’t seem significant or disappointing are just stepping stones towards your purpose. (James 1:2-4) Keep ttrying because God's God your back! "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" (Jer 29:11).
So there you go... Spiritual Baptism illustrated by Water Baptism and your motivation for Abundant Living! Jesus said, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly" (John 10:10).
Here are some questions for you...
Have you placed your trust in Jesus Christ? If yes, when? If no, what's holding you back? Can I answer some questions to give you clarity?
If yes, did you realize that you have been spiritually baptized? The Holy Spirit lives in you! If not, would you like to know how much you're missing out on?
If yes, have you been baptized in water yet? If no, tell a leader at church you want to get baptized soon! If yes, are you living in an abundant way - spiritually, emotionally, relationally, and physically?
My next blog will focus on how baptism is related to marriage!