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February 27, 2022 1:00 am
No single person has ever had the impact on humanity as that of Jesus Christ. Without technology, political power or military assets, Jesus altered the direction of history, by living a perfect life, becoming the perfect sacrifice, and rising again. Since He was perfect, why did He have to be baptized and what difference does it make for us today? Let’s contemplate the person and work of Jesus to get a fresh appreciation for His uniqueness.Click here to listen (Duration 54:30)
No single person is ever have the impact on humanity is that of Jesus Christ. Without technology, political power or military asserts Jesus altered the direction of history, living a perfect life and then becoming the perfect sacrifice for the sins that separated us from God from Chicago. This is The Moody Church. Our weekly service of worship and teaching with pastor Erwin Blitzer.
Today we begin a series on common see Jesus pictures of the Savior to teach us about his mission on earth later in our broadcast Erwin Blitzer will speak on common see his baptism. Pastor looks or comes now to open our service. We hope that you have come with parts that are unified parts that had put aside all of the stresses of today and yesterday enough tomorrow so that we can concentrate in our worship of the Lord our God, our Scripture reading today's going to be by pastor Andrew Lindquist, our youth pastor and you'll notice that we will have the opportunity also to participate. So let's pray together. Let's invite the blessed Holy Spirit of God has been poured out upon his people to cause us to worship acceptably as we bring ourselves into his presence would you join me as we pray and then we shall listen as the choir sings our father we ask today that your Holy Spirit might lead this service. We pray for a sense of renewal for a sense of concentration, joy.
Granted, so God hearts that are open to you hearts that are worshipful and we ask the Lord God, that we shall accept the invitation to comment to praise the Lord grant that a Lord we pray in Jesus name, amen and please stand as we read the word of God together the passages found in our bulletin. Psalm 145 verses 1 to 7. Join me on the bold print and I will read standard, I will exalt you.
My God, the king, I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise and extol your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise. His greatness no one can fathom.
One generation command here works to another, they will tell of your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They will tell of the power of your awesome works and I playing great deeds they will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully seeing of your righteousness. One of us should say something right.
Men together and were so grateful for all that's in this beautiful hymn also grateful for scriptures which remind us of who God is going him so well. I'll read this passage from Romans 6125. Listen to Romans what shall we say then shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase by no means we died to sin. How can we live in it any longer. Don't you know that all of us were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death. We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead to the glory of the father, we too may live a new life that is urban amen I think so. Amen if we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be reunited with him in his resurrection, but same together and to tell you that in my own personal life. One of the things that God is teaching me is stillness. As we were singing this course together. I'm reminded of the fact that we do have to be still and know that he is God. If there's not a time in your life during your devotional time or maybe you have signed up for that time of prayer on our prayer watch if there's no time in your life for complete quietness before God were maybe recited stands at him more a passage of Scripture that allow God by his Spirit to point out things in your life that need to be confessed, or issues that need to be given to God. I personally at this point don't know how you can make spiritual progress without it. Be still, we have just been singing for the power of the Lord is moving in this place and anywhere he will move where he is appreciated. Yielded to and worshiped. Let's join together as we pray that our father, today we want to thank you for your wondrous love to us. We thank you that you did not abandon us. We thank you that your word does say if God be for us, who can be against us.
We thank you today father that you are able to meet each individual need of those who are listening to this prayer and you can do so according to your will, with specificity, because some do need you today as a refuge in a time of storm. Some need to quietness some need the assurance Lord that you care about them others having gone through temptations this week. Some have survived the temptation and become stronger as a result of that some have given into temptation. Therefore, father we pray for cleansing. We thank you today that if we confess our sins, your faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness and then Lord, are those who have decisions to make young women wondering whether they should marry a specific man order or the other way around. And then, and all kinds of decisions regarding careers and futures, all of which are incredibly important father. The name of Christ, help us to submit all those decisions to you and then abide by your decision and we pray that you will lead us, make it plain Lord God. We pray for those father who have never known the warmth of the father's heart.
They've never received Christ as Savior, though they are good people, we pray today that you will help them to see the beauty of Jesus and why faith in him is so critical.
Our father this planet that you created is full of sin. It's full of pain.
It's full of brokenness and we pray that you will help us to see our part in what you are doing in the world.
Therefore, we pray for them missionaries. We pray for wherever the gospel is preached today, we pray that multitudes will believe it. In Jesus name Amen.
I think it is a scandal beyond IRNA that the two ordinances that Jesus Christ gave to the church, namely baptism and the Lord's supper, which were intended to unite the church would be the ordinances that would so strongly divide the church today were speaking about baptism.
Specifically, Jesus Christ. Baptism. This is a series of messages entitled, and see Jesus were going to be looking at various incidences in the life of Jesus Christ, particularly from the book of Matthew so you can be reading the book and anticipating them just picking and choosing some of the most important events in the life of our Lord and the purpose of today's message really is the purpose for the entire series, namely that we will appreciate Jesus Christ more, but specifically today so that we might better understand and appreciate baptism. Matthew chapter 3 is the text and I encourage you to turn their third chapter of the Gospel of Matthew and were going to pick it up at verse 13. In a moment except to say that John the Baptist was baptizing in the Jordan River and in doing that he was calling people to repentance.
We read in chapter 3, verse one. In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judaic repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand and then he goes on to quote Isaiah that I am in the voice crying in the wilderness, make way.
The name the path of the Lord what John was saying is this Jesus is coming, the Messiah is coming. Let's repent of our sins and let us therefore indicate our repentance through our baptism and let's get ready, because Messiah is on His Way, John the Baptist did not read Dale Carnegie's book how to win friends and influence people. When the Pharisees and the Sadducees came to him, he said, you brood of snakes, you generation of vipers, while any I don't think he baptized him because he says you have not brought forth fruits meet for repentance.
All right, then we get to verse 13 and Jesus makes the journey of maybe 50 or 60 miles depending on where John was there at the Jordan River, but Jesus comes from Galilee to the southern part of the Jordan so far as we know, and that it is there where John is baptizing. And Jesus comes and says John baptize me in trouble with the baptism of Jesus. Have you ever read this and thought my goodness, in context, it doesn't seem right that Jesus should be baptized.
If you've ever thought that I want you to know today that you're in very good company because that was John's problem to he didn't understand it either. He tried to prevented Jesus and said no. You'll notice then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying, I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me. But Jesus answered him, let it be so. Now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.
So John was having a problem to anything you know you could baptize me.
But how can I baptize you. Interestingly, John did not baptize the Sadducees and the Pharisees that came to him. He didn't do that because they were too wicked and that not because they were so wicked, but because they wouldn't repent. Now he doesn't want to baptize Jesus, but for the opposite reason. He knows that Jesus is the Messiah, even though the two of them grew up independently. He has a good idea that Jesus is the Messiah and so he knows that he's in the presence of divinity and humanity. He knows that he's in the presence of a sinless Messiah so you can't bear the thought baptizing him so if Jesus did not have to be baptized onto repentance. Why then was Jesus baptize two reasons that I hope will enlighten us today. First of all, Jesus was baptized to manifest who he was to manifest who he was, you know there's an interesting passage of Scripture in Matthew chapter 21 Matthew chapter 21 where Jesus shows that he believed that John's authority came from heaven.
They were pestering Jesus by whose authority do you do these miracles by whose authority do you teach he answered them and said, I will also ask you one question. He says if you tell me the answer. Then I also will tell you by what authority I do these things, the baptism of John, from where did it come from heaven or from man and they discussed it among themselves, saying, if we say, from heaven, he will say to us why then did you not believe him. But if we say from man. We are afraid of the crowd, for they hold.
They all hold that John was a prophet so they lied and answered Jesus, we do not know and he said to them, neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things. They knew right well that John the Baptist was from God, but they wanted to hang onto their sins.
Rather than confess them and forsake them. So Jesus is saying the baptism of John was not something that John thought up his authority came to him from heaven and Jesus is saying my authority comes from heaven just like John's authority comes from heaven, but we know that the real reason why Jesus one of the reasons why Jesus was indeed baptized, was to reveal who he was, namely the Messiah from John chapter 1, I want you to notice here in the John chapter 1 John the Baptist is now giving his take on what happened. He's looking back in retrospect to this event. The baptism of Jesus and he sees Jesus coming to him.
In verse 29 and says behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, many goes on in verse 31 I myself did not know him but for this purpose I came baptizing with water that he might be revealed to Israel. And John bore witness. I saw the spirit this sender from heaven like a job, and it remained on him.
I myself did not know him but he who sent me to baptize with water that's God we could read to God who sent me to baptize with water said to me, he on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain.
This is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit and I've seen and borne witness that this is the son of God, the baptism of Jesus was a public event wasn't just Jesus and John.
John was there, but there's no doubt that there was a crowd. Also, that was there and as they saw Jesus baptized and if we were to read the rest of the text. As we shall do in a moment the heavens are opened and the spirit of God descends like a dove upon Jesus. That was the sign this is the Messiah, John, in effect, was saying now to the people I'm the one who prepared you for the coming of the Messiah and now the Messiah is baptized, the heavens open the heavens didn't open for anyone else. The dove calms the boys says this is my beloved son in whom I'm well pleased. This is the Messiah, of whom I was speaking first reason why Jesus was baptized was to reveal publicly now who he was.
But there's a second reason why Jesus was baptized and that was to reveal his mission, and this gets to the heart of the text notice if there where back in Matthew chapter 3 verse 13 John is saying I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me.
Verse 15 but Jesus answered him, let it be so. Now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness pause there for a moment why that little word in the middle of verse 15, why didn't Jesus simply say it is fitting for me to fulfill all righteousness. He says for us does he mean that him and John is John Baptist going to have a part in the fulfilling of the righteousness of God. Of course not.
To whom is Jesus referring by using the plural us. I believe that he's referring to the Trinity because the Trinity is present here. We continue to read he consented. John did verse 16 and when Jesus was baptized immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him, and behold a voice from heaven said this is my beloved son, with whom I am well please. The Trinity sun is going down into the water, the heavens open when he comes up out of the water. The Holy Spirit is there descending like a dove upon him, and you have the voice of the father giving his declaration that his son is beloved and greatly greatly loved and so so the Trinity is involved here and it is the Trinity that is going to fulfill all righteousness. And so Jesus here is baptized. Well, you say. Well Pastor Lutzer that's all fine, but what does baptism really mean. Now we get to the new T. Gritty as we sometimes say what does it mean well. The Greek word but to do so, which is the word that is used here literally means to dip or to immerse sometimes to plunge. One writer used it of a ship that had gone down to the bottom of the lake. It was indeed to baptize and it stayed the baptized.
I'm sure when Jesus was giving what we call today the Lord's supper. He said that one of you is going to betray me one of you will betray me. Said he it is, to whom I will give the morsel after I have dipped it after I have that ties it and in the 16th chapter of Luke's gospel you member, you have the rich man and you have a Lazarus is on the other side and he says to Abraham, the rich man does because in those days they were able to talk to one another.
Though they were in separate compartments. You'll notice he says he says send a Lazarus they make dip his tongue that he may baptize rather send Lazarus that he may baptize his finger in water and touch my tongue because I'm tormented in this flame. Baptism means to immerse. And so Jesus here was immersed but the question still is how else is baptism used in the New Testament.
Another meaning is used metaphorically of going under. You go under in calamity. You can be baptized. Sometimes we use this when we say he was really baptized with fire or he's getting baptized into his new job that we mean is he's in the middle of the swirls of the pushes in the polls and the difficulties in the trials that came with his vocation. Now I want you to notice in Mark chapter 10 Mark 10 Jesus speaks of his coming baptism and is using the phrase here now metaphorically you'll notice Mark chapter 10 verse 35 and James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to him and said teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask you, I'm always amused by this passage for a number of reasons. By the way they came with her mother and that there some indication here that they were actually the cousins of Jesus of Siloam and Mary were sisters and so they maybe thought you know there's nothing like being a relative, even if it's a shirttail relative to get a perk and end then they come just like schoolkids do. If I ask you for a favor, will you do it well. Tell me what the favor is, first, thank you Jesus. Will you do whatever we ask you, they didn't really understand the cross and this really shows you the human nature of these otherwise very good disciples. So they're coming to Jesus and them. You'll notice that they ask him this question, what is it that you are going to do. He says that rather verse 36 Jesus asks what you want me to do for you and they said to grant us to set one on your right hand and one on your left in glory. Now Jesus had promised them. Throngs in his kingdom, but they're saying is not enough for us to just get a throne we want to be to your right into your left. I want to be the prime minister and overhear this other guy wants to be the secretary of the treasury right next to where you are and that Jesus said you don't know what you're asking because you don't understand the cross. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism by which I am baptize and here again it shows that they didn't know what they were talking about because they said to him, we are able to see Jesus knew that his suffering was going to be totally unique.
His suffering was going to be for the sins of the whole world. Nobody could participate with him in that kind of a baptism, but there is a sense in which, yes, they could be baptized.
Jesus does go on to say the cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized in a secondary sense they could do that James later on was slain with the sword and John endured a great deal of persecution before he died, but to sit at my right hand or my left is not mine to grant it, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared and of course the other disciples heard about it and they were angry getting to Jesus before they had a chance to get to Jesus to ask for the same thing but notice Jesus is under go through a baptism, and in order for us to understand the baptism of Matthew chapter 3, we have to understand the baptism that took place later he's talking about the cross is speaking about a baptism that he will be going through personally where he is going to be under the water of God's wrath bearing our sin in the Old Testament being underwater meant being overrun by calamity, for example, it says in Psalm 69 verse two I sink in the deep Meyer where there is no foothold. I have come into deeper waters and the flood sweeps over me. So Jesus is saying that as he's being baptized by water in Matthew chapter 3, which is our text today. This baptism is a preview of the baptism that he is going to endure in the future when he is going to be crucified on the cross when he is going to be buried. And when he is going to be resurrected to new life.
That's what the baptism really refers to, and that's why the Bible never refers and connects baptism to birth, baptism is always connected to death. Therefore, when we give baptismal instruction here at The Moody Church. We point out Romans chapter 6 being buried with him in baptism onto death that like is Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, so also you should walk in newness of life. That is the meaning of baptism.
It is to identify with Jesus in his death and his burial, and in his resurrection.
Very interestingly, in Matthew chapter 3, the heavens, do not open when Jesus is under the water. When Jesus was there dying on the cross, the heavens were closed. It's after the resurrection that the heavens open and of course he was able to ascend into heaven sometime later, but there is no voice from heaven, while Jesus is dying and overwhelmed by calamity. The baptism the baptism of his tremendous unbelievable suffering and so Jesus comes up out of the water and when he comes up out of the water.
It is then that the heavens open and just like the veil of the temple which was wrenching to that the heavens are ripped open. You know, I can imagine that saints in the Old Testament sometimes prayed old about his heavens and come down while God rends the heavens. Here he opens the men and it shows the proximity.
The nearness of Jesus Christ to heaven, and heaven to Jesus Christ and the rest of his life is going to be lived out in the presence so to speak of an open heaven just like our lives are lived out in the presence of an open heaven and when Stephen was being stoned your member he already began to see the heavens open and Jesus on the right hand of God, reminding him again of the proximity.
The proximity that there is to heaven this week I spoke to some people, all of whom had something in common. They were all grieving they were grieving the death of a child that was their commonality and how wonderful it is that for those who know the Savior, heaven is very very near and so Jesus goes down into the water, signifying his death, and then he comes up out of the water when we baptize you here at The Moody Church. If you ever notice carefully. We always bring you up out of the water and there's a reason for that. If we left you in the water. It would be an awesome picture of death and burial and awesome picture of Devon burial but it isn't the complete picture you're supposed to recognize that with Jesus, you are rising to the newness of life. And that's why we always bring you up after you've gone down into the water and like I like to say we've not lost anyone yet in the baptistery.
Yet in the Baptist. So Jesus here receives now the spirit. The Spirit comes like a dog you member the Old Testament. This world was baptized it was baptized in the flood of judgment and yet the ark rested on a mountain, then Noah sent out a raven and the Raven didn't return because there were plenty of carcasses and the Raven was a kind of bird that loved carcasses so it it was able to live but the dove return descended out again.
This time it came back with an olive branch signifying peace and no one knew that the earth was beginning to dry up and then later on he sent out the dove and the dove never return. While we don't know what happened to that dove, but we do know that is the blessed Holy Spirit of God came upon Jesus. The dove being symbolic of purity of sensitivity just like the spirit be sensitive to sin. That's why we grieve him when we sent the Spirit of God comes upon Jesus and anoints him now for the rest of his ministry, then you have the voice of the father speak. This is my beloved son in whom I'm well pleased God was giving his approval to the silent years of Jesus.
Jesus your member was brought up in a home, and we hear nothing about him after the age of 12 until his public ministry. Now all kinds of theories have arisen as to what Jesus was doing I was reading some apocryphal Scriptures perhaps two weeks ago in which it was says that Jesus was using his power almost like a little Dennis the Menace to do foolish things, like he would make little plate pigeons and put them in his hand and then blow in the pigeons would come to life and they fly away.
Shirley McClain says that during this period of time. Jesus went to India to learn from the gurus, there you know that I just simply say this. If you're not interested in facts.
Talk is cheap talk is cheap. We know nothing about Jesus Christ silent years. I have a friend who was going to write a dissertation on the silent years of Jesus and his professors is great idea then you don't have to write anything all that we know is that the father now says behold, my beloved son in whom I am well please are several lessons that grow out of what we've said today is Jesus here was predicting his mission what he was saying is, is that the baptism that I experienced in the Jordan River is symbolic of the baptism that I am going to have when I face the cross when I die, and when I'm raised again. And so Jesus is prefiguring his mission. Lesson number one the entire Trinity is involved in our salvation the whole Trinity is involved in our salvation.
The father sends the son, for God so loved the world he gave his only begotten son. The son dies on the cross, that the sun goes through that baptism that baptism and ends up being glorified as a result of it, and then the blessed Holy Spirit of God shows us are in need and gives us the ability to believe in and draws us into the blessings that come to those who trust Christ but the Trinity works together. You don't have one person doing this independently of the other person the that beauty is despite the mystery, the beauty is that the Trinity is involved in everything in creation and most assuredly in the new creation, giving you a new heart and a new mine and the Trinity is here. Let fulfill righteousness as a second, less the second lesson is that our own baptism identifies us with the death, burial, and the resurrection of Jesus. That's why Romans six as we quoted before is so significant. We are buried with him in baptism unto death, that like as Christ was raised from the dead, so also you should walk in newness of life. Couple of comments. First, clearly your baptism does not save you a Jesus did not to bring salvation by being baptized in the Jordan River. He brought salvation when he was being baptized on the cross in the tomb and then came out of the tomb and was raised. That's how our salvation was purchased, listen up. Those of you who were baptized may be as infants and you have this little certificate that you can't quite find, but you could if you needed it that said that with this water we make you a child of God.
Listen, nobody has the ability to use water to make anybody a child of God. You have to understand that you could be baptized so often that every fish in Lake Michigan would know your name. Maybe I should change that you could be baptized so often that both fish in Lake Michigan would know your name and still be eternally lost is not the water that somebody put on you. It's not the water that you went on there that is going to save you is the water that Jesus went under. It is the baptism that he endured on the cross that saves us. The Bible says the blood of Jesus Christ, God's son cleanses us from all sin. How many sins, therefore, are left for water to take away you answer that question.
But there are some of you.
God bless you your saved but you've never been baptized. Just imagine that now in the New Testament. You didn't have that, I challenge you to read the book of acts and find a believer who was saved wasn't baptized always says they believed and they were baptized wife in the early church. They understood they understood that when you follow Jesus you want to be identified in his death, his burial is resurrection and that's why the early church always used immersion, sometimes pouring because of other circumstances and we can do that to for someone who for whatever reason. Physical reasons cannot go under the water. But why do you deny the privilege of that Jesus gives us to be baptized and therefore say I want to be identified with his death, his burial and his resurrection.
There is 1/3 and final lesson Jesus died and I'm talking about his baptism on the cross, Jesus died that the father might be as pleased with us as he was with Christ. I want to say that again because it's so important and some of you are taking notes for which you will be especially honored in the day of judgment. No pressure, just tossing out all the interesting things Jesus died that the father might be as pleased with us as he was with Jesus's beloved son. Now you can read Matthew Mark Luke and John, and nowhere are we cold, beloved, and the reason is because Jesus had not yet been baptized. The cross for us. Afterwards, when you read the epistles. It says in Ephesians chapter 1 that God has graced us in the beloved one. Paul the apostle talks about believers. Here's a quote now. He says he says you are beloved to the father, beloved to the father why miserable, wretched dissenters, beloved to the father because we are accepted in Christ.
What Jesus did in his baptism on the cross is so applied to us that God says, I accept you as I accept him.
That is the gospel and therefore because of Jesus we can have that kind of acceptance. The Old Testament sacrifices had to be approved. Often times, the process was done by priests, it had to be an adequate sacrifice, even though the sins of the Old Testament were not taken away by the sacrifices, at least not permanently, but there had to be an approval process and what the father does here and what the father does at the transfiguration, and what the father does, just before the cross is to say, in effect, I approve of the sacrifice and certainly the resurrection is the father approving of Jesus as the sacrifice for those who believe in him asking a question I want to ask whether or not your saved you because you may answer that question too quickly. I have a different one for you. Is there evidence that God has done a miraculous work in your life that can somehow be related to death to sin burial in newness of life that in the Bible is the new birth, without which you will not see the kingdom of God.
It's the baptism of the cross that saves those who believe. Let's pray our father, we thank you today for the willingness of Jesus to be baptized to prefigure a baptism that will take place. Three years later and he said in the gospel of Luke.
I am to be baptized with this baptized and oh how my heart is straying because he knew what that calamity would be like. We thank you thank you that today we are accepted in the beloved one that thou canst think so well of us and be the God thou art is darkness to our intellect, but sunshine to our heart. Help us to walk in that today, and for those who've never trusted Christ as Savior. May they reach out, even at this moment and say yes I believe O grant that God we pray in Jesus name, amen on today's Moody Church. Our pastor loser brother, Mr. John, come and see his baptism, the first of eight snapshots of the life of Christ in a series entitled come and see Jesus next week will relive the temptation of Christ in the wilderness and enjoy the ministry of the Ring of fire handbell ensemble. Be sure to join us. One week from today are eight part series on common see Jesus can be yours on CD for a gift of any amount Moody Church. Our our thank you to you will be a set of eight messages, you can hear and then pass on to others. Just call us at 1-800-215-5001.
Let us know you'd like to support Moody Churches ministry, call 1-800-215-5001 or you can write to us at Moody Church media 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614. Mention the series come and see Jesus when you write or call online, go to moody offeror.com that's moodyoffer.com join us next time for another Moody Church. Our with pastor Erwin lutes are in the congregation of historic Moody Church in Chicago. This broadcast is a ministry of The Moody Church