Perhaps you have already seen the video of the young boy baptizing himself last fall.  The pastor is going long, as pastors can sometimes do, with his introductory words.  The pastor mentions how the young boy has waited a long time for this day.  But before the pastor can baptize him, the young boy dunks himself. 

It’s a cute and funny video.  I am sure that the young boy as well as many people in that congregation will always remember it.  Do you remember your baptism?

This Sunday our scripture is from the Gospel of Matthew 3:13-17.  In this passage, Jesus comes to John at the Jordan and asks to be baptized by John.  John objects, but Jesus says, “we must do this in order to fulfill God’s will.”  It’s interesting to note that Jesus says, “it is proper for us to do this in obedience to God’s will.” (verse 15). The plural links John and Jesus together as partners in carrying out God’s saving plan. 

What does it mean to be baptized?  Why do people get baptized?  Is it just a ritual we use for people desiring to be a member of a church?  Is baptism only about an individual’s desire to proclaim their faith in Jesus and express what God has done for them in their lives?  Or is there a communal nature to baptism?  Does baptism say something about God’s redeeming work in the world?

When we are baptized we are entering into partnership with each other, with Jesus and the Holy Spirit to carry out God’s saving plan.  When we are baptized we are seeking to connect to life, the Life, the one who said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.”  This Sunday we’ll explore what it might look like to be connected to life and how we might carry out God’s redemptive work in our world.

Pastor Dave           

 

Pastor Dave