Central Christian Church - Lampasas
Journey to the Cross: The Baptism
Beginning on Ash Wednesday and culminating at Easter, we will journey together through significant events in Christ’s journey to a humiliating death on a cross and then His glorious resurrection. We will explore the meaning of His baptism. Jesus’ baptism by John at the Jordan River is the first act of His public ministry. We will walk beside our Savior as He is tempted in the wilderness and sit at Jesus’ feet as he preaches the Sermon on the Mount. We dine with Christ as He instructs his disciples during the Last Supper and join the crowd for His triumphal entry. We examine the meaning of his suffering and death during Ash Wednesday and Maundy Thursday services. Finally, we join the angels in proclaiming his glorious resurrection.
Locations & Times
  • Central Christian Church
    204 S Broad St, Lampasas, TX 76550, USA
    Sunday 10:30 AM
Sunday, March 5th
Mission Item of the Month for March: Personal Care Items
OCC Item of the Month for March: Craft items

TODAY 1st Sunday Collection for Lampasas Mission

Mar 8 Women’s Wednesday 6 PM -- Will meet the 2nd & 4th week in March.
Mar 12 Time Change
Board Meeting
Mar 15 CWF 8 AM
Mar 18 Men’s Breakfast 8 AM
Mar 22 Women’s Wednesday 6 PM
Mar 25 Lampasas Mission Golf Tournament

Apr 2nd 1st Sunday Collection for Lampasas Mission
Apr 5th Women’s Wednesday 6 PM
Today we're going to look at an event that made it into all four Gospels - every author of every gospel found this event so inspiring and important that it was included. It narrates the inauguration of Jesus into ministry. It was His coming out party - His grand opening, so to speak. And, it begins the launch sequence of Jesus toward His eventual crucifixion. That makes it really powerful to think about.

We have two key players here: Jesus and his cousin, John the Baptist. John's ministry was to prepare the way for the Messiah. His message was simple and straight forward: "Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near!" (Matthew 3:2). When people repented, he baptized them. The Jewish people were looking for a deliverer to make things right in their country. They were a people whose land was occupied by an oppressive foreign government, and they longed for freedom. But it was more than that. It was a people whose relationship with God had grown cold.

God had chosen their forefather Abraham to be the patriarch of His people hundreds of years before. Like many relationships, it started out strongly but through the years complacency set in. Familiarity breeds contempt, they say. Israel started taking God for granted, and God won't tolerate that for long in relationship with us.
What religion are you?

The Baptism of Jesus simultaneously marks the inauguration of Jesus' earthly ministry as well as marking the beginning of the decline of John the Baptist's ministry.Many in Israel wondered if John might be the Messiah. Yet the last prophet declares with assurance that he is not even worthy to untie the laces of the Messiah's sandals (Matthew 3:11). John, the official herald of the coming king was waiting for the Christ to be revealed. The baptism of Jesus fulfills that need as the Messiah is identified to John by a special Theophany of the Holy Spirit. It is this identification which enables the Baptist to complete his task as herald (John 1:29-34). But the herald must wait his turn to announce the king's arrival; the first public announcement is made by God the Father himself.
Here at his baptism the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus is first prefigured. It is here at his baptism that the perfect one intentionally identifies himself with repentant sinners, and demonstrates his full humility. It is at his baptism where the redemptive ministry of Jesus Christ begins.

Each gospel contains an analogous passage which serves to clarify certain aspects of the Matthew narrative. Mark 1:9-11 identifies the geographic origin of Jesus more accurately as Nazareth.
Luke 3:21-22 informs us that Jesus was praying as the heavens were opened, and further clarifies that the Holy Spirit which descended on Jesus was in the bodily form of a dove rather than simply flying down the way a dove would.
Both Mark and Luke have the heavenly voice speaking directly to Jesus as in, "you are my beloved son..." which raises significant questions concerning Matthew's purpose in changing it. John's addition to the baptismal story (John 1:31-34) is more contextual in nature. It is from John 1:32 that we discover the baptizer did not know for certain that Jesus was the Messiah until after he saw the dove come upon him. Therefore there was something else about the nature and character of Jesus which caused John to seek baptism from his cousin. These collective hints, together with Matthew's account combine to display and explain the baptism of Jesus Christ.
The NT uses a variety of images to explain the meaning of baptism, such as dying and rising with Christ, sharing in his death and being cleansed from sin.

Baptism is a symbol of the death of Jesus Christ

In Luke 12:50 Jesus Christ described his death as a baptism or a flood overwhelming him. Baptism is a symbol of the burial of Jesus Christ
Immersion in water symbolizes how the old sinful life is buried with Christ.
Dying to sin and sharing Jesus Christ’s sufferings, symbolized by baptism, is a lifelong process.
Baptism is a symbol of being saved from the flood

The flood/baptism symbolizes both judgment (the death of sinners and the death of Jesus Christ) and salvation (those in the ark and those in Christ passing safely through judgment). See also Genesis 7:6-7
Baptism is the gospel equivalent of circumcision
Baptism symbolizes washing from sin.
Baptism is an outward sign of cleansing from sin and from a defiled life and conscience. See also 1Corinthians 6:11; Titus 3:5; 1 Peter 3:21
Baptism is a symbol of putting on Christ
Baptism is seen as putting on Christ, as one might put on a coat or garment, and thus be “clothed with Christ”.
Why is the Baptism of Christ important?

The approval of the Father. The presence of the Trinity is found in Jesus' baptism. There is community in the Godhead. How did God express love before creating angels and people?

God does not need us to have community and love. God does need us. However, this makes God's grace, love, and mercy even more remarkable.
Christians believe that God is love. The Trinity defines love: the love of the Father for the Son, and the Son for the Father, of the Father for the Spirit, of the Son for the Spirit, and of the Spirit for the Father and the Son. It is, finally, a love which is so great that it went out of itself. This is why God created and sustains all that exists.

Here we see that love is not a feeling or emotion, as many people think. Rather, love is a permanent relationship of self-giving and eternal mercy and compassion. Jesus Christ is the revelation to humanity of that permanent love, in which the Son lives in the Father, and the Father in the Son, and the Spirit in the Father and the Son.

This kind of love is beyond our understanding. It marks the beginning of Christ’s ministry
What does this mean for us?
1. We should be obedient even as Jesus was obedient.
2. We should obey Christ by following him in baptism.
3. Jesus was not just a Good man. He is the son of God.
4. Jesus is the Messiah. The anointed one of God
Why should we be baptized?

You are a follower of Jesus Christ. Those who accepted his message were baptized.
Paul also speaks of baptism in conjunction with “putting on Christ.”
Another main purpose of baptism for Paul is its function as an outward manifestation of inward transformation through the death and resurrection of Jesus, inaugurating a new life in obedience to Christ.
Water baptism, then, is one of the first things we can do practically in our lives to show our desire to live to honor God. It’s a simple sign that we’re coming to God on his terms, not ours. Today he wants us to be immersed in water; tomorrow there will be more to obey.
When should we be baptized?

Baptism events in Acts demonstrate the belief that baptism is to take place immediately after conversion.
Does water baptism save us?

Though baptism is clearly commanded in the Bible, it’s also clear that it is not a ritual that saves a person. We start a relationship with God by trusting Jesus, and no good work on our part can add to the completed work of Jesus through his cross and resurrection. We are saved entirely by grace (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Baptism isn't where you find Jesus; it's what you do once you've found him.
The “circumcision in Christ” may refer either to his death on the cross or to baptism. See also Dt 10:16. Baptism symbolizes washing from sinAc 22:16 Baptism is an outward sign of cleansing from sin and from a defiled life and conscience. See also 1Co 6:11; Tit 3:5; 1Pe 3:21
The “circumcision in Christ” may refer either to his death on the cross or to baptism. See also Dt 10:16.