The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins. (Mark 1:1-5)
Today's Morsel: I'm amazed at the number of churches that do not preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. When we begin to read Marks account of the gospel of Jesus Christ, he lets us know at the onset that John the Baptist preached the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins. Why preach against sin if you aren't going to baptize people for the remission of sins. This is why Jesus told His disciples, "And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things" (Luke 24:46-48). Jesus told them repentance and remission of sins must be preached in His name. John the Baptist was aware of that as well. And so, on the Day of Pentecost, after the 120 in the upper room were filled with the Holy Ghost, Peter began to preach about Jesus Christ, and when the people asked him what they should do, Peter said unto them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls" (Acts 2:38-41)." "Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount" (Hebrews 8:5). Peter did not change the pattern that John the Baptist and Jesus had already established. Later in his own epistle he would write, "By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ" (1 Peter 3:19-21). Have you had your sins remitted? Baptism still works.
Sing: Are you washed in the blood, in the soul cleansing blood of the Lamb, are your garments spotless, are they white as snow, are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Thought for Today: Baptism still doth save us.