Posted on Thurs, Jan 17, 2008 at 11:17 a.m. EST
AUG 2006 - JULy 2007
"Savior's Truth Accept Now Daily"
By Ramesh C.Reddy
January 17, 2007
“At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.” (Mark 1:9)
Points 1&2: Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee to be baptized in the Jordan by John.
It is interesting that the Bible mentions that Jesus came all the way from Nazareth to the Jordan to be baptized by John, the Baptist as John prepared the way for Him. Nazareth was at least 70 miles or 3 days walking distance from the Jordan River. This showed me Jesus’ commitment to be baptized.
Not only that but 3 days stuck in my mind. In retrospect, when we look back, Jesus was in the tomb for 3 days before coming back to life. It took Jesus approximately 3 days to journey from his hometown to the Jordan River to be baptized. You have to wonder about the significance of that!
It becomes that much more interesting that John baptizes Jesus when John specifically told the people “And this was his message: ‘After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.’” (Mark 1:7-8)
If anything, people may have expected John to be baptized by Jesus. It did not happen that way.
I asked myself what was
the significance of Jesus’ baptism?
“Then Jesus came into Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. And John tried to prevent Him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?’ But Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he allowed Him.” (Matthew 3:13-15)
Jesus did not have to be baptized because He was already perfect but took the long trip and allowed John to baptize Him to set an example to the people of the importance of baptism. Not only that, but Jesus was identifying with humanity and setting an example.
It was so cool to read about Jesus’ commitment. Three days is a long trek to take to be baptized and yet Jesus took that trek. He did not allow obstacles to come in the way nor did Jesus have the attitude that He is in control and should be baptizing others rather than being baptized. This also shows Jesus humility.
I saw important implications for my own life. Baptism is important and should be followed just because Jesus Himself was baptized and was setting an example. But, it is important for us to realize what does it really mean to be baptized before we get baptized. Our church Oakland International Fellowship has baptism classes for those who seek to be baptized so they understand what they are doing. Being baptized as a ritual has no meaning to it. Being baptized because others are being baptized has no meaning to it too. The reason has to be genuine before the Lord. Romans 6 explains the purpose of baptism now.
Another implication is that if I need to get something done, I should not let obstacles stand in the way. It could have been easy to reason that Galilee was right in Nazareth to be baptized in the Sea of Galilee but instead Jesus does not do that but goes all the way to the Jordan instead of asking John to come to Galilee!
I ask you now dear friend, how can you take a stand?
It will not be easy to take a stand many times for issues you believe in that are biblical but taking a stand for Jesus and the Bible is the best thing we can do. Taking a stand for doing right is the best way to go.
Trust in the Lord and allow Him to help you through the situations. Many people throughout history have taken a stand on many issues but it was not always peachy. I am not going to say that it is going to be easy but the Lord will strengthen you through the situations.
As the New Year of 2008 is already underway, your faith could be tested and put through the fire. Satan will try to burn you out and make you charred so you cannot stand up for your faith. He could bring all kinds of obstacles into your presence whether it is through professors who speak out against what is biblical, through doubts that creep in, through peer pressure to do things that go against biblical morality, through family life of those that are not followers of Christ, etc. But, you don't have to give in!
You can take a stand! Yes, you can! Allow the Lord Jesus to help you to take a stand for Him, for He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit, guiding and leading you! Yes, He will!
I want to share with you what I think is a true story that occurred on one of the campuses in the United States that I shared with every InterVarsity Christian Fellowship student in the past and with so many others regarding taking a stand.
There was a professor in a philosophy department who was an atheist and angry towards anyone who believed in God that he would make fun of them. The first day of philosophy class with 300 students, he had dared anyone who believed in God to raise their hands. Not one single student raised their hand except one student in the back.
When the student raised his hand to take a stand for God, the professor mocked him and told him, 'if your God really exists, let's see if he can stop this chalk from breaking and threw it on the ground. The chalk did not break when thrown on the ground but rolled away. The class of 300 was just amazed.
Friend, you maybe just one person but you can make a difference. Yes, you can friend. This one person had taken a stand for the Lord and he became a witness to the entire class. He did not let ridicule stop him or what he saw as obstacles because he wanted to take a stand.
Now, Jesus knew the importance of baptism so he did not let obstacles stand in the way of getting baptized. In the same way, as you are in school, at home, or at work this New Year of 2008, taking a stand for your faith becomes very important and worth it friend. Yes, friend it is!
I tell students whether they are followers of Christ or not really shows when they come to college. Before college, a lot of students take on their parents faith. In college, they become more independent and are bombarded with choices and situations they may have not experienced before which will determine whether they will continue to be followers of Christ or decide to go their own way.
You can let obstacles control you or let the Lord of Heaven and earth help you through the obstacles. It starts with taking a stand for your faith regardless of how tough the journey will be. Friend, the Lord will get you through so don't give up regardless of the days that go by!
When you have to take a stand for a particular issue or reason and it glorifies the Lord, may you be given the strength and endurance to come through in the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth! Amen!
Ask the Lord Jesus to reign in your life and He will! Make the background song by Vineyard Music called 'Lord Reign In Me' your prayer too. You need Internet Explorer.
"Savior’s Truth Accept Now Daily!" (S.T.A.N.D)/”Will You Take A Stand?”
If you would like to invite Jesus Christ into your heart and make Him a
daily part of your life, you can this very moment. You will never be
alone. You can claim God's promises for you in the Bible and see them
come true, before your eyes, in His wonderful timing. You don't have to
wait for a special time to come to the Lord. You can come right now as
you pray the prayer below, meaning it in your heart.
No matter what you feel in your heart, know that Jesus has come in and resides with you! You are not alone! To make your walk strong with the Lord, spend time in prayer talking to Him as you would to a friend. You don’t need special words to talk to the Lord. Spend time in His Word reading Psalms and turning them into prayer. Next allow God to heal you and speak to you through the Gospel of John or Gospel of Mark before moving on to other Books of the Bible! Slowly, let the Lord show you to which Scriptures He wants you to go to next. It is also important to be part of a body of believers to help you grow in the faith. Find a Bible believing church that preaches the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation proclaiming Jesus Christ our crucified and risen Lord who brings us hope, healing, and help! But beware of churches who do believe in the Word of God completely but there is no freedom in Christ but legalism involved.
As a student, it is not too late to join a fellowship on campus too this blessed New Year of 2008! May the Lord's presence and peace fill you with His love now and forever! Amen!
Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to meet to study the Bible, pray with, talk about spiritual issues or whatever is on your mind! My number is 412-720-4579.
"This is my work and I can do it only because Christ's mighty energy is at work within me." (Colossians 1:29, TLB)
Love in Christ,
.Click picture to read my dad's memoriam:
' I AM ' Series Archives:
What kind of L.I.G.H.T do you follow? (Dec 13, 07, 10:09 a.m.)
"What kind of B.R.E.A.D do you eat?" (Dec 08, 07, 10:10 a.m.)
"Who is your S.H.E.P.H.E.R.D?" (June 30, 06)
Gospel of Mark Archives:
Mark 1:1: "What does the G.O.S.P.E.L mean to you?" (Jan 15, 08, 1:15 p.m.)
Mark 1:1-4: "How seriously do you T.E.S.T.I.F.Y about prophesy?" (Jan 12, 08, 11:18 p.m.)
Mark 1:5-8: "Who do you P.O.I.N.T to?" (Jan 16, 08, 8:48 a.m.)
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