Wednesday, October 12, 2011

October 12, 2011 … Baptized Into Christ

Passage of the Day: Romans 6: 3 [see verse in bold/underline] … Rom. 6:1 - 3 … What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?

My Journal for Today:
Certainly, as Christians, the justification for our sins (past, present, and future), which comes at conversion by our faith in Christ as Lord/Savior, is a wondrous thing (see Romans, Chapters 3 – 5). However, equally wonderful, and enormously important to our sanctification and our lives as Christians in this world, is the reality that we have been joined in spiritual union with Christ.

In today’s passage/verse, the Apostle Paul uses the metaphor of water baptism to teach converted Christians, most Jewish at the time who would understand the symbolism of baptism, that at conversion we died and were reborn in our immersion spiritually with Christ. In Ephesians 2: 1 – 3 Paul also wrote of leaving Satan’s realm at conversion, dying to the former self and being raised again into life with Christ. In Galatians 3: 27, Paul uses another metaphor concerning our post-conversion life in Christ, saying that once baptized as believers, we put on Christ as a garment of righteousness. And in 1st Corinthians 6: 17, he uses yet another image – that of marriage – to show that we are joined with Christ in a covenant bond eternally (the New Covenant).

All of these word pictures, images of our union with Christ as believers, as well as the repetition of these theological concepts, should motivate us to internalize these truths as believers so that we can live our lives in a true covenant bond with Christ. As John MacArthur writes in today’s Strength for Today devotional, “What a blessed privilege and an awesome responsibility is ours (as Christians) to have our lives inextricably bound with the Son of God.” And it was to be ours by our faith in Christ’s gift of atonement on the cross at His resurrection. As Paul points out in Colossians 3: 3, our lives and sins are forever hidden with Jesus.

Now, as we are bonded with Christ forever, we have His power over sin in our lives; and I want to repeat that for emphasis – now with the indwelling Spirit of God in my heart forever, I have the very resurrection power of Christ over sin in my life, … the same power Who raised our Lord from the dead, … i.e., the power of God’s Spirit! And we must ask ourselves what we are doing with our lives to give Him our covenant best, becoming the bonded workmanship Paul describes in Ephesians 2: 10, yielding the good works which illuminate our bond with our Lord and glorify God, the Father. And when we see our lives in this eternal union with Christ, we will live it out accordingly, becoming more and more, each day, like the One with Whom we’ve been joined.

My Prayer Today: How wonderful it is to be in covenant with you, Lord! Amen

No comments: