With today’s study from Romans 6 focusing on the importance of baptism, these thoughts from Kyle Idleman* are both timely and important:
“What are you waiting for?”
We see that question in Acts 22:16, when Paul is telling the story of his conversion. Ananias asked Paul, “And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized, and wash your sins away, calling on his name.” For those of you who haven’t been baptized, let’s talk about what exactly baptism means.
Baptism is a Personal Commitment
No one can make this commitment for you. Baptism needs to be taken seriously by each person considering it, because it is a commitment to following Jesus – something that should not be taken lightly
Baptism Unites us with Christ
Paul is clear that baptism is a symbol of joining with Jesus in His death and resurrection – going under the water symbolizes being buried in death, coming out of the water symbolizes resurrection (Romans 6:3-4)..
Baptism is an Expression of Faith
In Acts 2:37, the Bible says that people were “cut to the heart” by Peter’s sermon. They asked what to do, and he told them in verse 38 to be baptized. It was the expression of their faith—the action from their conviction.
Baptism is an Act of Obedience
In the story of Naaman, an important man who had leprosy, the prophet Elisha told Naaman to wash himself in the Jordan River seven times (II Kings 5). This seemed inconvenient and inefficient to Naaman, but he eventually did it and was healed. Obedience is a channel of God’s blessing.
We’re good at making excuses for things we don’t want to do, and baptism is no different. We say, “Well, I’m waiting on someone to make the same decision so I can be baptized with them.” No, this is a personal decision. We say, “Well, I don’t want to offend my parents.” But what about offending God? Who are you really devoted to? We say, “I’m going to get baptized, but first I need to get my life in order—first I need to get control of some of my sins.” No, you need God’s help. Accept his forgiveness and find strength in the spirit. When there is conviction—there is a need for action. What are you waiting for?
*Kyle Idleman is the narrator and preacher in the “Not A Fan” video series, and he preaches in Louisville, Kentucky.
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