Do or Die | get baptized - Feature Image
Posted On 01/07/2016

Do or Die | get baptized

you gotta decide

For the past two weeks, we’ve been focused on the issue of “Do or Die.”  The moments of big decisions in our lives.  Do we take the job?  Are we ready to start a family?  The one-story ranch in the ‘burbs or the industrial loft downtown?  Do I believe in Jesus and what He did for me?  There’s a time for investigating and questioning in every big decision, but there’s also a time when all that needs to stop and you stand at the threshold of at least two doors.  This is the moment of decision … and you gotta decide.  You can’t pick all or some of the choices and try them all out.  You can’t say yes to both the ranch and the loft and split time for a month to see which one works or “feels” better to you.  You can’t go to work at one place on one day, and try the second option the next.
Even more, there is no middle ground when it comes to faith and belief.  You gotta decide.  If you haven’t already, you need to decide today.  You can wait, but it’s that serious, and life is too fragile.  Each breath we take is given by God, and the next one is not guaranteed.  This is NOT a scare tactic, it’s just the truth.  Please watch the video.  And if you watch it, you will have all the information you need to make a decision.

repent and be baptized

God is very clear in scripture regarding baptism.  Man has authored a host of religious practices (infant baptism, confirmation, etc…) which, quite honestly, don’t have a basis in scripture.  Things which have the intent of salvation or the outward profession of it, but are simply not scriptural.  Early in the New Testament, God is very clear about the role of a follower of Jesus.  In Matthew 28, Jesus shares some very simple instructions with his disciples:

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Matthew 28:18-20

Jesus says, “share the Good News of my life, death and resurrection, and when people believe, baptize them and teach them the things that I have told you.” (my paraphrase)  Baptism is a response to genuine belief.  It is telling the world about the heart change that has taken place inside of you.  It is publicly proclaiming that you are a follower of Jesus.  This cannot happen as an infant, and it doesn’t require classes.  In Jesus’ words, the teaching follows the baptizing and there’s nothing in between the step of belief and baptism either.  We should always be careful to read the Bible and do what it says … and also not make up things to add to it.
A monumental moment took place not long after Jesus spoke those words to His disciples.  Jesus goes back to heaven and the followers of Jesus are a bit overwhelmed with what that was all about.  Can you imagine what they were going through in following Jesus for just a couple of years, watching Him die, seeing Him after He was raised from the dead and then poof, He’s gone.  Jesus promised His disciples that the Holy Spirit would come after He returned to heaven (John 14:15-31).  And in the book of Acts, the Holy Spirit shows up in a big way!  It’s called the day of Pentecost, and I cannot even imagine what it looked like.  All the disciples and many followers of Jesus all together and the Holy Spirit descends and fills them.  Peter begins to boldly preach the Good News of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection and people of many nationalities and native languages hear the words of that message in their own language (no U.N. translators).  Peter ends his message with the following words:

“Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”
Acts 2:36-37

And what was Peter’s response?  How did he answer the critical question?

Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:38

Repent and be baptized.  “Repent” — a simple word that means “turn around.”  Turn around, Peter says, and head in a different direction than you’re going.  Turn away from the life you’ve been living and run to God.  Believe this message, turn around, then … be baptized.  Peter’s answer was as simple as Jesus’ command to His disciples.  It wasn’t a list of things, there weren’t multiple steps, there wasn’t a requirement to take a class … “Repent and be baptized,every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.”
This is our invitation to you today.  No matter where you are on the road of unbelief, or as a believer who has not been baptized.  Be baptized.  Shout to the world that you are a follower of Jesus.  Believe in Him, then tell everyone by being obedient in baptism.
It isn’t our desire to just get people wet, by imploring people to do something which isn’t genuine or real.  We are not trying to shout to the world, “look how many people Life Bridge baptized!”  Our heart is to see people come to Jesus in genuine belief and then be obedient in baptism.  Please don’t wait another second, minute, hour or day.  Call us, email us, come see us on Sunday and get baptized!

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