Thoughts About Baptism As An Act Of Obedience

There is a lot said about obedience in Scripture. Paul begins his letter to the Roman church with obedience on his mind (“…to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations…” Rom 1:5). Preceding this statement is the qualifier in v3-4 (“Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom we have received grace…”). Obedience is made possible through the grace of Jesus. But the point is that it IS possible. Now, this just isn’t any old run-of-the-mill obedience. It is obedience of FAITH. Because of the grace of Christ, we can live out a faithful obedience; one that draws us nearer to God and further from sin.

One of the greatest outward evidences of the grace of Jesus in the life of a person is baptism. For sure baptism displays the theology behind a person entering into a new life in Christ (“We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” Rom 6:4). But at the same time, baptism is an act of obedience. It is a person declaring, “Jesus has changed my life and I want many to know about it!”

So I guess  the question now should be, “What are you waiting for?“. Here’s the truth: Obedience reflects true conversion. Don’t get hung up on a person’s decision to “invite” Jesus into their heart. Watch and see what happens after the decision. If a person has been saved by the grace of Jesus, the automatic response will be obedience. Jesus’ brother, James, put it pretty bluntly: “So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” (James 2:17). We don’t work for our salvation. We work from our salvation. Baptism illustrates this splendidly.

So what are you waiting for? And if you have been baptized, then you should be (by the grace of Christ) “bringing about the obedience of faith” in others. Yep, you need to be encouraging others to take this step of obedience as well.

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