This Sunday is Easter Sunday! Indeed, I’ll be preaching my 9th Easter message as the Lead Pastor of Prairie Flower Baptist Church. It’s always such a joy to open God’s Word and to declare that we worship a crucified & RISEN Savior! Such a message never gets old. Indeed, how could it? It’s this very message preached and then believed that saves the souls of men and women. I can’t wait to preach it up once again this Sunday.
This Sunday is also Baptism Sunday! This Sunday, we’ll have the privilege of watching two very special young people take their next step of faith by being immersed in the waters of baptism. This too never gets old. How could it? Seeing people step from death to life and publicly declare their love and loyalty to Jesus Christ is such a beautiful and invigorating thing.
As I was preparing for Baptism Sunday, I came upon a familiar passage, but got some fresh insight from it. The familiar passage is from Romans 6:1-4, which starts off like this, “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means!” Paul wants to demolish the ridiculous notion that Christians should allow themselves to sin in any way they want because “grace will simply cover it.” But here’s what struck me…Paul continues this line of thought about not sinning and not abusing the grace of God by giving to the Roman believers a reminder. He essentially says to them, “Choose not to sin! Choose not to abuse the grace of God!” HOW?! “Remember your baptism!” Yeah, listen to what Paul says next in Romans 6:1-4, “How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”
Wow. Do you see what the Apostle Paul did there? He essentially points the Roman believers back to their baptism and says, “Why would you go on sinning as a Christian? Remember your baptism! Remember that moment you publicly declared your love and loyalty for Jesus as you were dunked in the water!” Yes, Paul actually models for us a way to fight temptation by calling us to remember our baptism.
This line of reasoning is similar to what I would do with a married couple who is struggling in their marriage. Perhaps they’re just tired and want to divorce. Among many things, I would say to them, “Don’t divorce! Fight for your marriage!” HOW?! “Remember your vows!” Yes, I would point this married couple back to their wedding day and say, “Remember…” Perhaps remembering their special day, and the promises that they made to each other on that day, will give them the strength they need to fight for their marriage another day…In the same way, Paul encourages us to remember the day of our baptism, and the beauty of the Gospel message it portrays. Indeed, remembering our baptism gives to us another weapon in our arsenal to fight sinful temptation…Remember your baptism!