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Who Exactly is Allowed to Perform Baptisms?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
April 17, 2024 4:48 pm

Who Exactly is Allowed to Perform Baptisms?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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April 17, 2024 4:48 pm

Episode 1470 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

  1. Does Daniel 12:4 point to an end times prophecy that is happening now? 2. Does Jesus teach in the Lord's Prayer that God leads us into temptation? 3. Who exacly is allowed to perform baptism? 4. Is Jesus' desire for his people to be sinless? 5. Does Isaiah 45:11 teach that we can command God?     Today’s Offer: Praying with Jesus   Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.   View our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.

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Who exactly is allowed to perform baptisms? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Hi, it's Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can call us right now with your question. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. We also have a YouTube channel. You can watch Adriel live in the studio every day at 11 30 a.m pacific time, and send him your question through our YouTube channel. Also, email us anytime at questionsatcorechristianity.com. First up today, let's go to Jay, calling in from Missouri. Jay, what's your question for Adriel?

Hey, Adriel. I'm calling about Daniel chapter 12, verse 4, and especially when it's talking about, he says, but you, Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book until the time of the end. Many will go to and fro, and knowledge shall increase. And so does that does that mean that that's the time of the end? Because I see I've never experienced in my life such an increase in knowledge and an increase in travel, and I wanted to know what your perspective was and all that.

Hey, Jay. Thank you for that excellent question. So coming here to the end of Daniel in Daniel chapter 12, it's fascinating. I mean, this is one of the great Old Testament prophecies about the resurrection of the body, the hope of the life everlasting, and then you have this kind of strange statement. Daniel is told, okay, Daniel, shut the words and seal the book.

This is going to be opened up at a later time. And then that statement that you highlighted, many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase. Now, I think the focus there is, you know, the fact that people are going to continue to be doing the things that they're doing. You think of what Jesus says in Matthew 24 when he talks about the coming of his second coming, the coming of the Lord, and he says, you know, people are going to be, you know, eating and drinking and being given in marriage, and then he's going to come.

This is the sort of, you know, life going on as usual. What's fascinating, though, about this passage in Daniel chapter 12, and actually throughout the book of Daniel, you see parallels between this apocalyptic prophecy or the prophecies in Daniel and what we find in John's vision in the book of Revelation, because throughout the book of Revelation, you have not the sealing of the book, but it's unsealing. It's sort of like, you know, the mystery revealed. And so here in Daniel 12 verse 4, you have this sealing that takes place, and then in places like Revelation chapter 5 verse 1, John has a vision of the ascended Christ, and he says, I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne, a scroll written and on the back sealed with seven seals. And of course, there in Revelation chapter 5, Jesus is going to open those seals, and as he opens each seal, there are going to be these amazing judgments that are poured out upon the earth. Or you also think a little bit later, Revelation chapter 22 verse 10, the end of the book of Revelation, the angel says to Daniel, and he said to me, do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near.

Let the evil doer still do evil, and the filthy still be filthy, and the righteous still do right, and the holy still be holy. And so what seems like we're getting here is in the book of Revelation, the fulfillment of so many of these things that Daniel had highlighted in Daniel chapter 9 and in Daniel chapter 12. But we also realize that it hasn't fully been accomplished. We're still looking forward to the second coming of our Lord Jesus. But there is something that was started. There was something that was began, if you will, through his death and resurrection, and that is, you know, the age to come, this new creation that we look forward to, has already broken in into our world through the resurrection of Christ, through the new birth that God gives to us. And so really that's what's happening.

I think reading Daniel alongside of reading the book of Revelation is really helpful, and you can begin to see some of those connections and some of those clues with regard to interpretation. And so, Jay, appreciate your question, and thanks for reaching out to us. Just following up on Jay's question, Adriel, as we have seen, you know, in the last couple of decades, knowledge has, you know, increased exponentially. Now we're looking at things like AI, and it really makes evil more accessible, more available. And you just wonder, could this be leading us to the end times?

Well, it is interesting, right? Like, we have a tendency to use even good things for evil purposes. And so, you know, with the advancement of knowledge and technology, there have been many, many good things. You think of medicine and what not.

But there is that tendency in us to use those good things in a corrupt manner. It's interesting because there are many people, many atheists, who, I mean, are putting their hope in technology. And, you know, we're going to conquer death. There's a really popular atheist right now.

His name is Yuval Noah Harari. He wrote a book called Homo Deus. And the whole premise of the book is one day we're going to deify ourselves as human beings through technology, through the advancement of medicine. But it's interesting because throughout the book he recognizes the one problem we're not going to be able to solve, like, we might be able to cure all diseases, maybe, I mean, right?

We'll see. But we won't be able to solve the problem of things like murder and, you know, people harming each other. We won't be able to solve the problems of sin.

And so many people are looking to the future and to technology to solve all of our problems. What we really need to look to is the past, what God has accomplished in sending his Son into the world, Jesus, to truly conquer death and to give us the hope of eternal life. And that eternal life and that resurrection is part of what Daniel talks about there in Daniel chapter 12.

So well said. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you have a question about a Bible passage that confuses you or maybe a doctrinal issue that you're wondering about or something going on in your church life that you're either confused about or concerned about, feel free to give us a call. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE. We'll be taking calls for the next 20 minutes or so. 833-843-2673.

We do get voicemails as well here at the Core, and you can leave us one 24 hours a day at that number. Here's one that came in from one of our listeners named Jim. My question has reduced theology and the Lord's Prayer. When it comes to lead us not into temptation, God does not lead us into temptation. It's the devil that leads us into temptation. And when Jesus was teaching his apostles our Lord's Prayer, he would be speaking in Hebrew, which the word, instead of leading us into temptation, would protect us from temptation, which is eon in Hebrew. And I was just wondering what the pastor's comment would be on that.

And I get in a lot of trouble when I ask this question, but it certainly seems to me that he would not use God to lead us into temptation. Thank you. Okay. Well, Jim, thanks for that question. It's actually something I address in my book on the Lord's Prayer, and so I'll reference that a little bit. But we're talking in particular about what Jesus said in Matthew chapter 6, verse 13, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. And there are a lot of people who, you know, they're concerned about this language. Does God, is he trying to trip us up? There have been some who have suggested, well, maybe we should interpret this a little bit differently, or maybe we should word it a little bit differently.

But a couple of things I think are helpful here. One is that words in the New Testament have what we call a semantic range, meaning the same Greek word in the New Testament can take on a number of different meanings. Sometimes this word that's used here means to tempt, as in to sinfully entice someone to evil. Sometimes it simply means to test.

You think of the hour of trial, and I think that's certainly how it's being used here. We know very clearly, according to James, that God is not tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone to sin. And so it's not that God is cruel and that he's trying to get us to to stumble or to fall, but what is being emphasized here is the fact that God is sovereign and all-powerful, even over the things that do tempt us, and those avenues of temptation that we experience in our lives. And I highlight a few examples in my book, Praying with Jesus, in the 10th chapter on this particular petition, Lead Us Not into Temptation. So a few of the ways in which God exhibits his power and his sovereignty over even the avenues of sin. Well, God alone is the one who gives the tempter permission to act. You think of the example of Ahab and his deception in 1 Kings chapter 22, verse 22.

You also think of Job, right? Job is probably the most well-known example, where the evil one goes to the Lord and has to get permission, and so God is the one who's totally sovereign over evil and over Satan. Sometimes also, God's providence places us in the presence of temptation. Here we might consider the fact that Jesus was led into the wilderness by the Spirit, by the Holy Spirit.

And what happened there in the wilderness? Well, Satan would confront him, and Jesus would overcome the temptation or the testing there. That's in Matthew chapter 4, verse 1. But there again, you see the Spirit of God leading Jesus into the wilderness. And you also note that sometimes in scripture, God withholds the heavenly assistance that enables us to better resist temptation.

One example is in 2 Chronicles 32, verse 21, where God left King Hezekiah to himself that he might test him. And so when we pray, God, lead me not into temptation, we're acknowledging God's power to keep us and to preserve us. We're saying, God, I don't have strength in myself. Help me, Lord.

Help me to endure those times of testing. And of course, and of course, we remember again what James said, count it all joy, my brothers, when you experience various testings, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience, those things in us that are good and honoring to the Lord. And so God is working in us to mold us more and more into the image of Christ. And we fall down at his feet, crying out, saying, Lord, lead me not into temptation, deliver me from evil. Appreciate your question, Jim, and hopefully that clears up at least that question with regard to the Lord's Prayer for you. We mentioned Adriel's new book, which is called Praying with Jesus. It's really an exploration of the Lord's Prayer, but more than that, it's also teaching us how to pray, and we are offering that right now. And this is actually Adriel's very first book, so I guess you're pretty excited about it. I am pretty excited about it, Bill, and it's been great.

Actually, it's been neat in the mornings. I've been reading a little bit to the kids, and so they're able to track with it, which is great, and we've been able to have some good discussions. They're especially excited for any anecdotes or stories that involve them, and so that's really what they want to hear about. But this book on the Lord's Prayer, I mean, my hope is that it encourages you in your relationship with the Lord and helps you to commune with God in prayer. It's great, you know, just to go through individually. I think it's devotional, but it's even a good resource for churches. If your church is looking for a small group Bible study to go through that wants to grow in prayer, I think this could be a helpful resource. And as Adriel mentioned, you could also use it in family devotions.

He's doing that with his kids, so we'd love to get this in your hands. Again, it's called Praying with Jesus, and we'll give that to you for a donation of $25 or more by going to corechristianity.com forward slash offers. That's corechristianity.com forward slash offers and look for Praying with Jesus.

Well, we do receive voicemails here at Core Christianity, and here's one that came in from one of our listeners named Corrine. Hi, Pastor Adriel and Bill. My question is about baptism, and who is supposed to administer the sacrament of baptism? The background of my question is in regard to a family that are former members of our church. They're no longer members, but while they were members, they baptized their young daughter in their swimming pool in front of the immediate family as the witnesses. But it was performed by the girl's father, who has no ordination. He's not a pastor of any kind. He's just a member of the church, and so I was just curious as to what your thoughts were on that.

Thanks so much. Yeah, this is an excellent question, and it comes up, I mean, quite frequently. I can say as a minister, you know, of the gospel in a local church, pastoring in a local church, this is a question that's come up in our church.

And so there's a couple of things that I would want to say at the outset. One, God is ultimately the one who's doing the baptizing, right? Baptism, just like the Lord's Supper, is a gift from God.

It's a gospel gift to us. You know, baptism in particular is to be administered in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, ordinarily by an ordained minister, and so it should be a pastor. And this, you know, typically when I say this, I've said this before on the broadcast, and this is one of the things people will push back, and they'll say, wait a minute, I was baptized by, like you said, my dad or my uncle or my friend, you know, we're just at the beach, and we realize I haven't been baptized, and he said, well, let me do it for you. And so this is something a lot of people have a hard time with, but in the same way that not everyone is called to preach the gospel in the same way, right, like you think of what James says, let not many of you become teachers, brothers, preachers, knowing that we'll receive a stricter judgment. There are people who are called to this office as ministers of the gospel to guard and protect the word of God, and baptism in the Lord's Supper are those visible words of the gospel called to be protected and treasured by the church, and so ordinarily they're administered by a pastor. Now, does that mean that if an individual was baptized by their, you know, they came to faith in Christ and they were baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son of the Holy Spirit by their father or by their uncle at a pool, and, you know, they just didn't know any better, does that mean that it wasn't a real baptism?

I don't think I'd go that far. Now, if it was a baptism in the name of Jesus, or if it was done improperly in other regards, I think I would have more questions, and so I'd want to do some investigating, and I've done this kind of investigating, like I said, in the context of our church, but one of the examples that's sort of interesting that I'll go back to is, if you remember in the Old Testament, there's a scene where Moses had failed to circumcise his child, and circumcision in the Old Testament is this sort of type of baptism, if you will. Paul, I think, emphasizes this in Colossians chapter 2, and essentially what happened was, I mean, the judgment of God was burning against him, and his wife, Zipporah, ended up circumcising their son, and it was, I mean, it was accomplished. I mean, the work was done. Now, was it done the way it was supposed to be done?

Not entirely. I mean, Moses was the one who was supposed to do that, and yet the Lord still accepted that, and so sometimes I'll point to that passage and say, look, there are baptisms that are real baptisms, but, you know, should have been done in the context of the local church by a minister. Okay, it wasn't, but was it still a real baptism? If Christ is the one who's baptizing, and I think that's where there's a little bit of room for openness, and this is, you know, case-by-case basis, and that's how we treat it at our church, but if you want to be baptized, man, it needs to be, it ought to be in the context of the local church, where you're growing together with other believers.

It's like Paul told the Corinthians, by one spirit we were all baptized into one body. Baptism as this sign and seal of God's grace towards his people doesn't just exhibit our union with Jesus, but our union with one another as Christians in the body of Christ, and so it should be done in the context of the worshiping community, not, you know, in isolation on my own, and I think that needs to be emphasized today, because a lot of people just sort of miss that. You know, along those lines, we had a baptism service at our church last weekend, and 15 of our middle schoolers got baptized. It was so exciting to hear their testimonies, and then the youth pastor who was ordained was baptizing them, and it was beautiful.

Man, Bill, that's so awesome. I was just, I had a meeting with a guy, a young man, 19 years old, in going to our church right now who hasn't been baptized, and we were just talking earlier this week. We had coffee early in the morning, and he wants to be baptized. The Lord has done a great work in his life, and so just such a wonderful thing, something to celebrate God's grace exhibited to us in this powerful, in this beautiful way through the sacrament of baptism that Jesus has left for us.

Amen. You're listening to Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you have a question about the Bible, the Christian life, doctrine, or theology, we'd love to hear from you. Here's our phone number.

It's 833-THE-CORE. Let's go to Sue, calling in from Indiana. Sue, what's your question for Adriel? Yes, I was wondering if, is Jesus' goal or hope for us to be sinless? I mean, with his help, of course, but is that his goal, his hope for us, that we would be sinless after we're saved?

And I do have a second question. First John 1, 9, you know, it says, if we confess our sin, God will forgive our sins and cleanse us. Is that for first-time believers, or is that for people after salvation?

Sue, thank you for that question. I mean, the good news is that's for people after salvation. I go back to that verse every day, because every day, as the people of God, we still, because of indwelling sin, we struggle, and we sin against God in thought, in word, and in deed, and so we need to come before him, confessing our sins. This is part of the reason why Jesus, when he taught us the Lord's Prayer, said that one of the things we have to pray for is forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And that's a daily prayer, and not just every day, but multiple times a day, right?

Often, you know, in the in the early church they would pray that three times a day, right? And the reason for that is because we just are desperate for the grace of God. Now our Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to destroy the works of the devil, including sin. Sin is at the top of the list, and so yes, I mean, I think in one sense we could say that it is God's intent for us to be sinless, but that's not going to happen this side of heaven, this side of the new creation.

Right now, we're growing in God's grace. We're sinless in the sense that we've been justified, our sins have been forgiven, but we're daily being sanctified. We're called to put to death, as Paul says in Romans chapter 8, the sinful deeds of the body. And so if somebody says, you know, this side of heaven, God's goal is for you to be without sin, and it's possible to be without sin, to be sinless. Well, that's a real problem.

There's a red flag there. Typically what's happening there is what people are doing is they're minimizing God's law. They're making it into something that we can perfectly keep, but the reality is God is looking at everything, including the the intention of our heart. And so we're never going to be perfectly sinless, and even our good works this side of heaven are still tainted by sin. This is why some of the greatest theologians have distinguished between works that are perfect, which no believer can accomplish, and a believer can't accomplish a perfectly good work, and true good works before God, which are imperfect but accepted because they're brought about by the work of the Holy Spirit, they're done in faith, you know, with the desire to honor God and worship God. And so we're called to good works, and we do, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, perform good works, but even those good works still need to be sprinkled with the blood of Jesus as we offer them to God, because even those good works are imperfect. And that doesn't mean that God doesn't receive them and isn't pleased by them. It just means that we can't ever put our hope in our good works, and so one day we will be so sinless.

For the believer, when we die, our souls are perfected in holiness, and we're in the presence of God, waiting for the resurrection of the body and the life of the world to come. But right now, you know, during this present evil age, as the New Testament calls it, we are fighting against sin, and the Spirit of God is putting to death the sinful deeds of the body, and that's a fight that's going to go on until we breathe our last breath. But praise God. God is the one who keeps us in that fight and preserves us for His glory and our good. Amen. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We have a YouTube channel, and you can watch Adriel live in the studio every day Monday through Friday at 11 30 a.m. Pacific time.

You can also send us a question through the YouTube channel, and here's one that came in from one of our YouTube viewers. He says, Can you explain Isaiah 45 11? Does this verse mean we can command God? I think there's a question mark missing in this version of the Bible. Oh, Isaiah 45 11. So the context of Isaiah 45 is God's deliverance of His people through the intervention of a Gentile king, Cyrus. This is actually one of my favorite sections of the book of Isaiah. Isaiah 45 verse 11. Thus says the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, and the one who formed Him.

Ask me of things to come. Will you command me concerning my children and the work of my hands? I made the earth and created man on it. It was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their hosts. I have stirred him up in righteousness, and I will make all his ways level. He shall build my city and set my exiles free, not for price or reward, says the Lord.

And there it's speaking about Cyrus allowing the the exiles to return to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple. And what God is doing is not it's not a justification for commanding God to do things, but God is inviting us to consider the fact that He is one, the Sovereign One, who tells us the future before it happens. That's why in the very next chapter, in Isaiah 46 9 and 10, God says, I am God, and there is no other. I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times the things that are not yet done. In other words, God is saying, look, I'm God, there's no one like me, and here's how you'll know.

I can tell you what's going to happen before it happens. And that's precisely what the Lord did in the case of Cyrus, and that's also what the Lord did so clearly throughout the pages of the Old Testament in the case of Jesus, our Lord, the suffering servant who came to make perfect atonement for our sins. It's one of the things that testifies of the inspiration of Holy Scripture. God bless. Explore the truth of God's Word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-18 20:05:41 / 2024-04-18 20:16:02 / 10

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