Out Immanuel's Nurturing Truth! (P.O.I.N.T)”
Ramesh C. Reddy
that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John
in the Jordan.” (Mark 1:9, NIV)
I asked myself what 2 things do I learn about Jesus'
commitment in verse 1:9?
1. Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee.
2. Jesus was baptized by John in the Jordan.
I asked myself what was
the significance of Jesus coming from Nazareth in Galilee to the Jordan
1&2: Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee to be baptized in the Jordan by
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.
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?
Mark 1:9 did not really give me the details so I
looked to other Gospels to see if they gave me reasons. The Gospel of
Jesus Christ according to Matthew gave a reason.
“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, NIV)
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
modeling the importance of humility and commitment. Thank you Lord!
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 and the stand Jesus
I asked myself what are the implications for my own
Baptism is important and should be followed because Jesus Himself
was baptized and was setting an example.
Also, if I need to
get something done, I should not let obstacles stand in the way. It
could have been easy for Jesus to reason that Galilee was right in Nazareth to be
baptized in the Sea of Galilee so why bother trekking for 3 days by
walk. However, 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, what will
you take a S.T.A.N.D for in life?
Dear friend, there are many things we can stand for in life but
not every stand is a right stand. From Jesus, we can learn about the
importance of taking a stand for doing what is right even when obstacles
come our way. Jesus set a great example when Jesus walked for 3 days to
get to the Jordan from Nazareth just so John, the Baptist could
baptize Him. It was a 70 mile walk and Jesus took it by taking a stand
to be committed to do what is right. It is important to stand for what
is right. It becomes that much more powerful when we take that stand
when the tide is against us. Jesus did not let
obstacles come in the way. We too should take a stand for doing right
and not let obstacles come in our way.
I love how my loving wife
used to get up at 3:00 a.m. to
spend time with the Lord Jesus when she had to be at work at from 6:00
a.m. - 6:00 p.m. She did not think to herself, 'Ouch, I have to work a
12 hr shift everyday so I need all the sleep I can get'. No on the
contrary, she knew how important it is to start her day by spending in
prayer to the Lord Jesus and reading/meditating on His Word. It is her
commitment and love for the Lord and the stand she has taken for the
Lord Jesus that drew me to her in our courting days.
My wife and I miss
Pastor Hugo Cheng
so much because of his love for us and the Indian students he came
across. We were so touched through the years because he would always
schedule everything around Indian Game Night with the support of his
precious wife Heather Cheng
so he would not have to miss spending time with the Indian students
atleast two times a month. Even though we started at 6:00 pm and did
not get home until 11:00 pm at times, Pastor Hugo would always stand
with us through the obstacles to show his love for us and the
students even when he had to preach on Sunday mornings. Usually
people schedule things around family life, church life etc but
thanks to Heather, he and Heather made a sacrifice never to miss
Game Night with us unless there was an emergency. The only time he
missed was when his daughter's flight got delayed. Even then he
tried his best to make it. There were days that it was just Pastor
Hugo, Chandra, and I but we could see his commitment to the Indian
students and us by his actions. Game night would always occur on
Saturday's so that was a sacrifice away from his wife and kids but
they both made it happen for 3 1/2 years from June 01, 2013 - April
2016 w/o missing any except one. We are thankful to the sacrificial
stand both of them have taken for the Indian students. We are also
excited for the International church they have decided to start in
Maryland with the help of their church there :) It has always been
to show the love of Christ consistently to the Indian students and
other internationals including us. Thank you Jesus! :)
My wife loves the Indian students so
much that even when she was in her 9 month of pregnancy, she still
cooked all the meals for them because she wanted them to be
homemade. Even now, my mommy
would start cooking Friday evening until Saturday afternoon for the
Saturday game night while both of them prepare different dishes.
They took a stand so the students who come not only have homemade
Indian dishes to eat but so I or different pastors can share
spiritual food with them from the Bible, etc to show the love of
Christ to them.
When I think about what Jesus did, it reminds me of his
servant Evangelist Billy Graham who took a stand for the Gospel of
Jesus Christ to be shared with all who would come to listen so He
can point them to Christ. Graham did not let obstacles stand in the
way but would visit different nations to preach the Gospel so souls
can be saved. It was always to point people to Christ, Graham took a
stand for the Gospel. I need to take a stand for the Gospel and
point people to Jesus without making excuses about obstacles. Help
In your life, it may not be to the level of
what the later Evangelist Billy
Graham has done, Pastor Hugo or Heather
have done 2 Saturdays a month to show the love of Christ, what my
wife and mom have done to show the love of Christ, what I have done
through Pittsburgh Standard, etc but each of us are faced with choices each and every day on doing
what is right. We need to go that pathway no matter how hard the
obstacles seem depending on the Lord.
Graham never let obstacles stop
him from preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ till he went to be
with the Lord at 99 years of age because he knew Jesus alone could
give Eternal Life to a world marred in sin. Graham knew how much
Jesus loves them and wanted them to experience the love of Christ.
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. Spending time with the Lord Jesus is so
important for Him to guide and lead us, taking the right stand in
As March is 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 to the negativity that
prevails around you. You can overcome and become a beacon of light to
those around you as you depend on the Lord Jesus Christ!
Yes friend, you can! You can take a stand! Yes, you
can! But it starts with Jesus Christ and the principles of His Word
revealed through the Gospel! Friend, more than anything, we should take
a stand for Jesus Christ in our lives.
We all need Jesus in our lives because sin has marred our
relationship with God separating us from Him. Now because of this deadly
virus known as sin, it will prevent us from taking a stand for
righteousness because it is a slave master keeping us in its bondage but
thanks be to God that we can be freed through what Jesus did for us.
Thank you Jesus! Jesus will help us take a stand for doing what is right
when we yield our life over to Him.
We can know what Jesus stands for by
reading His Word, meditating on it, and following it.
Friend, there will be those that tell you that this is the 21st
century and the Bible is outdated but it is not friend. The Word of God
stands the test of time and is the same when God gave it to His people
to share with all those that would be born later such as you and me.
It will be easier to take a stand when we believe 'The Bible is the
Word of God', instead of believing 'Bible becomes the Word of God' or
'Bible contains the Word of God'.
Believing in the other two statements will only make us pick and choose
what parts of the Bible we want to follow. We cannot choose which
instructions to follow and which instructions to skip when we want to
assemble something. No, all the instructions have to be followed in its
In the same way, God the Author of Life has given us an instruction
manual here on earth to follow for our well being. It is the Word of God
from Genesis to Revelation for us to follow.
We cannot follow the Bible or take a stand on our own without the
help of the Holy Spirit. 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
As spring break is underway for many campuses, we all will be faced with
making a stand for what we believe is the right thing to do. Let our
decision be based on taking a stand for what is biblical in all issues such
as sanctity of life, sanctity of marriage, etc.
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!
You maybe asked to take a stand that you alone are supposed to
do just as Queen Esther was chosen to free the Jewish people from the
evil clutches of Haman. She fasted, prayed, and decided to take a stand
against evil even when she knew her life could be at stake.
For you, your life may not be at stake, but your career could,
your family could, etc. With the Lord's help and your love for the
Lord will help you through the obstacles to be committed as you walk and
talk with Jesus daily. Thank you Jesus. Come as you are and find help at
the throne of grace for all your needs. Praise the Lord!
One day I met a former instructor of
mine who told me something to the effect that these days no one
participated in class like I did. The class had to do with law &
morality. Whether it was concerning abortion, homosexuality, etc, I
up against abortion, homosexuality, etc defending morality even if I
was the only student speaking against them because I wanted to take
a stand. My stand was based on Biblical principles. These days we
are so afraid of 'what other people would say or think of us', 'are
we politically correct' etc, even if we are speaking the Truth from Scripture in love. That is
not taking a stand. Let us be BC (Biblically Correct) than PC
What Jesus did should motivate us not to
be silent but speak out regardless of the obstacles that
may come our way whether it is losing a job, being ridiculed by our
peers, family members etc as long as we speak the Truth of the Word of God in love.
Taking a stand does not just have to do with moral issues
but in our daily lives too!
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
What about you friend, are you willing to give up your life for Jesus Christ, your job for
Jesus Christ, your sleep time, etc?
We cannot on our own without the love of the Lord and His
strength permeating in us. As we turn to the Lord, He will give us the
we always put Jesus Christ first taking a stand for Him in our family,
in our career, in our academics, job, etc. Whatever the outcome, we
would have taken a stand for the Lord of the Universe. Help us Jesus!
"Savior’s Truth Apply Now
Daily!" (S.T.A.N.D)/”What will you take a S.T.A.N.D for in life?”
Dear Jesus, I thank you so much for being my Lord and Personal Savior.
Thank you for setting an example for us to follow through . I thank you for the
commitment you have shown and I pray that we will be committed to you.
Help us to testify about you and
point others to you, taking a stand on issues that you want us to be
bold and faithful. We cannot on our own and need your help so we seek
you Lord with our whole heart. Help us Jesus please. Thank you Lord.
Thank you for being baptized to identify with humanity even though you
did not have to. I love you Jesus and I turn my life over to you. Please
Lord help each student and non-student to take a stand for you. Guide
them and strengthen them through their experiences on campus, at work,
at home, or wherever they are placed. I thank
you Lord Jesus for hearing our prayer and answering us. We depend on you
for your help and thank you for loving us, dying for us, and coming back
to life choosing to save us as we turn to you! In Your Name I Pray
prayer below or use your own words to invite Jesus Christ into your
life and have a personal relationship with Him. Now is the time of
Salvation. Don't wait.
Dear Jesus, I read that you alone can give me access to Heaven and
be delivered from the bondage of sin and death. I want that Lord. I
believe you died on the cross for my sin and rose again to give me
new life. I believe your Blood shed on the cross saves me when I
turn to you. So I turn to you now with all that I am and ask you to
make something of my life for you. Please be my Lord and Personal
Savior. Please come into my heart and make my heart your home. Thank
you Jesus. Thank you for hearing my prayer and answering me. Thank
you for delivering me from my sin as I am sorry. I love you Jesus. I
need you. Help me Jesus! In Your Name I Pray Jesus! Amen!
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!
May the Lord's presence and peace fill you with His love now and
Friend, if you have prayed this prayer and meant it in your heart, you
are a new creation in Christ and all old things are passed away and
everything has become new! You may feel something or may not but don’t
base it on feelings but base your new life in Christ on the promises of
our Savior who will never leave you nor forsake you! Amen!
Feel free to email
if you want to meet to study the Bible, pray with,
talk about Spiritual issues or whatever is on your mind! My number is
"This is my
work and I can do it only because Christ's mighty energy is at work
within me." (Colossians 1:29, TLB)