Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

The Joy of being Saved and Baptized!

Meditation for the week of June 12, 2011

Acts 8:39  Now when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more; and he went on his way rejoicing.

This official from “darkest Africa” is an example of what happens when we seek the Lord with all of our hearts.  First, the Lord makes sure that the official gets his hands on a part of the Bible but not on just any part.  He gets the scroll of Isaiah the prophet that so clearly speaks of the coming suffering savior.  Then the Lord sends a busy evangelist to him and only him so he could understand the message of the book he was reading.  When he understands the message and trusts the Lord, he immediately wants to be identified as a Christian by being baptized (or immersed) in water.  This man had experienced the presence of the Lord in a most remarkable way.  Because of that he believed, he was baptized and he went on his way rejoicing.

Was it the baptism that caused such joy or was it his salvation or was it both?  I think it was both and those who are saved but who never get scripturally baptized miss out on the joy that comes with simple obedience to the command of the Lord to be baptized.

There are some things in our lives that we don’t need to pray about, we just need to do what the Lord has commanded.  We may need to pray about how to do it, but we don’t need to pray about whether we should do it.  Baptism for a believer is one of those things.  In Acts 10: 48, Peter commanded Cornelius who had just come to faith in the Lord to be baptized.  In Matthew 28:19, the commission to the Lord’s disciples is threefold.  They are to make disciples, baptize them and teach them all things. 

The Bible teaches that faith in Christ saves.  Baptism marks out a saved person in this world as belonging to Christ.  It is like a ranchers brand on his cows. The rancher marks those that are his so that when they run with other cows, he still knows which ones are his.  The Lord sees this mark even if men do not.  A person can go to heaven without being baptized but a person should not go to heaven without being baptized.  If a person had opportunity to be baptized and did not do it, what is it going to be like to meet the Lord who loved them enough to die for them?  I don’t think it will be easy trying to explain why they didn’t love the Lord enough to be baptized for Him.

In Scripture there is only one way to be baptized and only one time to be baptized.  All the examples of believer’s baptism in the Bible involved people who had made a confession of faithe in the Lord Jesus.  Some churches baptize infants who cannot make their own personal confession of faith.  This only gives the child a false sense of security when they are old enough to believe on the Lord themselves.  All the examples in Scripture involved immersion which is what the word baptism really means.  So adults should be immersed In water but only after they believe.  Thus, the way to be baptized is by immersion in water and the time is after a confession of faith in the Lord Jesus.  In the Bible, new converts were usually baptized immediately after they were saved.  They weren’t asked to wait to prove themselves, they were encouraged to be baptized to prove themselves.

The joy that comes with believing in the Lord and being baptized can’t be explained, it needs to be experienced.  I hope everyone reading this meditation has “gone on their way rejoicing.”

Bruce Collins

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