Thursday, January 6, 2022

Friday prior to Epiphany 1


Luke 3:15-22 - How many baptisms are there? Luke emphasizes the anointing of the Spirit in connection with baptism. The Holy Spirit comes to us in and through our baptism. In the Gospel lesson “water baptism” and “spirit baptism” are mentioned. In verse 16 John the Baptizer says he baptizes with water but a greater than he will baptize with the Spirit and fire. Water and Spirit baptism are one and the same. The Spirit comes with the Word manifested by the sign of water. Baptism is essentially a spiritual matter, a covenant between God and the believer. It is not a mere external matter of applying water to a person. You are a true and complete Christian by virtue of your baptism. This is your birthright, where faith is born. Its purpose and power cannot be taken away from you.

Baptism is n act of God’s adoption. Note that God takes the initiative in Luke’s account of the baptism of Jesus. Here God accepts Jesus as His Son. This also takes place in your life. You are made a Christian and made a member of God’s elect in Baptism.

Baptism is a call to service. Jesus’ baptism opens His public ministry. Jesus goes to the wilderness immediately after his baptism to carry out his mission from God. At your baptism you receive your marching orders and are sent on a mission to serve God and fulfill the destiny God has for you as a redeemed child of God.

Luke makes Jesus’ baptism a corporate and not only and individual experience. “When all the people were baptized” Jesus was one of them. Baptism is not an individual matter, not a “family affair.” It is a corporate concern in which the people of God are involved. Thus, the church teaches that Baptism is not a private service, but a baptism should be held at a regular worship service in which the people of God participate in the baptism and serve as additional sponsors in the case of infant baptism.

A prayer for newness of life in Christ – Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness and put upon ourselves the armor of life, now in the time of this mortal life, in which Your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility, that in the last day, when He shall come again in glory to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal. 2-7, January 2022 

[1] Baptism, copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things

[2] Collect for newness of life in Christ, Lutheran Service Book copyright  © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

No comments: