The summer baptism festival is just around the corner and with that comes a fresh opportunity to look at this beautiful picture of grace that God has given to His Church. The truth is, one of my favorite aspects of my job is overseeing our quarterly baptisms, in particular being in the classes with those who are wanting to be baptized. Hearing the stories of how Christ is at work in the different lives that make up our church community is nothing short of incredible. Whether new believers or lifelong followers of Jesus finally responding to the call to baptism, it is a privilege to hear how God is at work.
Christian baptism symbolizes two very significant ideas. First of all it is a symbol of unity with Christ in his death and resurrection. Scripture tells us that somehow as Christ was crucified on the cross, He experienced death for all who would choose to follow Him. It also tells us that anyone who is united with Christ in His death is also united with him in His resurrection. And this newly resurrected person is not the same; they are raised as a new person.
Baptism is also a picture of cleansing, declaring that through this union with Christ we have been washed and made completely clean.
New life and cleansing. What a beautiful picture of what Christ is doing in the lives of His followers. And it is only in Christ that we can experience this.
That is what I get to witness every time a class comes around and that’s why it is so great to be a part of. This was one of Christ’s final commands and has been the mark of His followers throughout the history of the Church. “Go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”