“Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” – Matthew 3:13-16
Even Jesus submitted to baptism to “fulfill all righteousness” or do everything that is right.
“Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin.” Romans 6:3-11
Just as Christ gave His life for us and died, we have also given our lives, and our old self, the person we were before we met Christ, is dead. Just as Christ over came death, we too are over comers of our old life through Christ. When you are baptized, the rising up out of water symbolizes this new life. You are raised to walk in the new life that Christ gives when we accept Him. As you come out of the water, you are showing the world your commitment to follower Christ.
“If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10
When we confess with our mouth that we believe and trust in Christ we make a statement of faith. Baptism is also a public statement that we have surrendered our lives to Christ and we believe in Him. It is similar to a marriage ceremony. You can tell someone you love them and want them to be your partner for life but a marriage ceremony makes a public statement of what is already in your heart.
“If anyone publicly acknowledges me here on earth, I will openly acknowledge that person before my Father in heaven.” Matthew 10:32-33
Baptism is a necessary step of obedience for every Christ follower. It symbolizes what has happened in our hearts as we give our lives to Christ just as He gave His life for us. After Christ gave His life He was buried and then later raised from the dead as a new person. We too are symbolically buried in a grave of water and come out of the water a new person. We are declaring to the world that we belong to Christ and He is our Lord and Savior.
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