1Pet 3:21 Which water, as the antitype, also now saves you, that is, baptism, not a putting away of the filth of the flesh but the appeal of a good conscience unto God, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Matt 28:19 Go therefore and disciple all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
[Part 1 of 2] ...baptism is the appeal to God of the baptized one for a good conscience unto God. Baptism, as a symbol, a counterpart of our belief in all the accomplishments of Christ, testifies that all the problems we have before God and with God have been solved. Hence, it is also a testimony, witnessing that in our conscience there is no more offense, but rather we are full of peace and confidence that we have been baptized into the Triune God (Matt. 28:19) and organically united with Him through the resurrection of Christ, that is, by Christ in resurrection as the Spirit of life. Without the Spirit of Christ as its reality, baptism by water immediately becomes an empty and dead ritual. In this verse we see that baptism is first our appeal, the appeal of the baptized ones, to God for a conscience that is both good and pure. A proper baptism will always bring the baptized one into such a situation. Before we believed in the Lord and were baptized, we were sinners. But when we were enlightened through the preaching of the gospel, we came to realize that we are very sinful. Both before God and toward man we have had many transgressions, trespasses, and offenses, and we had a great deal of guilt. Then we repented, believed in the Lord, received His forgiveness, and were saved. But our repentance and believing need an outward expression. This expression is baptism. Therefore, baptism and our believing, our faith, are two aspects of one thing. For this reason the New Testament speaks of believing and being baptized (Mark 16:16). Believing and being baptized can be compared to using our two feet to take a single step. First we believe, and our believing can be compared to the half-step forward of one foot. Then we are baptized. Our baptism can be compared to the completion of the step with the other foot. Together, believing and baptism make one complete step. (c) 2007 Living Stream Ministry.
Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Witness Lee, Life-study of First Peter, pp. 223-224. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA. Please visit us at www.emanna.com. Send comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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