SOAP Devotional 2014-09-03
Scripture – Observation – Application – Prayer
Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. But John tried to talk him out of it. “I am the one who needs to be baptized by you,” he said, “so why are you coming to me?” But Jesus said, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires. ” So John agreed to baptize him. (Matthew 3:13-15 NLT)
Jesus had no sins to repent from, so John tried to talk him out of being baptized. But Jesus did more than to just come and die for our sins. He came to set examples that we could follow. Jesus was about to embark on his earthly ministry. He started by being baptized.
For us as believers, baptism is the first work of obedience we should take. If someone professes to be saved, but refuses to be baptized, I would have them question where their true allegiance is. Jesus, himself, set the example and scriptures require that we repent and be baptized. This is not a work to gain salvation, but a work because we are saved. I have seen miraculous transformations take place in people’s lives at their baptism. God rewards obedience. In a prison, one gentleman cried for 30 minutes after being baptized. Later he told me that he had done awful things in Vietnam that had tormented him for years. Those memories tormented his life and made him the man he had been and the reason he was in prison now. He said, “but when I came out of the water, I felt forgiven and clean for the first time in 38 years. If you are a believer that has never been baptized, get in touch with me and if possible, we will get wet together. Either way, follow the Lord’s example in baptism.
Father, I thank you that I obeyed your word and was baptized. Don’t ever let me forget how important this is.