Friday, October 05, 2007

The beauty of baptism

Grand Sweep Daily Reading: Mark 1, 2, 3

Mark 1:9-11 (NIV)

9 At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 As Jesus was coming up out of the water, He saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on Him like a dove. 11 And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”

Good morning!

We had another baptism at Faith Church last Sunday. I love baptisms! It is such a joy to see families come to the altar together, lifting their children up to the Lord for holy baptism. Baby Ethan was wide-eyed and attentive throughout the service. God does something that we cannot do for ourselves at the moment of baptism: He sends His sweet Holy Spirit down and we are covered in His grace and love. One day, baby Ethan will make a decision whether to follow the Lord for the rest of his life. Our responsibility as the body of Christ is to help him grow in faith and encourage him to walk daily with Jesus. The act of Christian baptism is a reminder to all of our personal initiation into the body of Christ.

Why did Jesus need to be baptized? He was God made man, perfect in every way. There were no sins for the Father to forgive. Jesus was sinless. And yet, He came to the river to be baptized by his cousin, John. It was Christ’s public initiation and answer to the call – a call that had been etched in His heart since the beginning of time. Jesus came to fulfill all Scripture. He did this to honor the Father He loves. Christ did not come to be saved, but to save all of us. Can you imagine what it must have been like to see the Holy Spirit descend upon the Lord like a dove when Jesus emerged from the underneath the water?

For the first time, human eyes got their first glimpse of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, united and together as one. How often do you sense the presence of Father, Son and Holy Spirit in your life?

Every time a person comes forward for baptism, we have an opportunity to renew our commitment to Christ. The next time you see and hear the holy water pouring over the life of another, look for the miracle happening inside of you. God reaches down through the love of Christ, by pouring out His Holy Spirit upon your life. He loves you with a passion and purpose. He is calling out your name, urging you to move into a deeper relationship with Him. Christ set the supreme example for our lives. Won’t you come to the water today, and find rebirth in His love?

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO

Pray for: the baptism of the Holy Spirit to fall over you, like a dove descending from the hand of God. Jesus is calling you to renew your baptism today. Won’t you give him your heart?


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