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Posts Tagged ‘Baptism’

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Scripture reading: John 12:20-26

When we accepted Jesus Christ, we received life. The Blood of Jesus Christ is the life of God. This is what we received in our souls which were dead in trespasses and sins. This life had to help us die to the alien life of sin which had occupied the soul. Then, we had the self-life, which also had to die. So we see that when we accepted Christ as our Savior, it was a matter of submitting to death in order to receive life. When that process is completed, then we begin to enter into Christ. Paul, speaking to the Corinthian Christians in I Corinthians 12:13, declares, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body.”

We are not baptized into the body of Christ until the body of sin and self is given a death-blow. If sin is still reigning in our members, then it was not fully dealt with. The grain of corn cannot bring forth a new life until it has given up its own life. We must die to live and that life does not begin until the death is complete. This is all done by faith.

The divine order of the entering into Christ is shown in the tabernacle of Moses by the three veils. The first veil is called the Gate, the second is called the Door, and the third is called the Veil. The door is Christ, and the entering in is preceded by the washing at the Laver, which is death to self and a complete surrender to Christ. Self cannot be on the throne and, at the same time, Christ be crowned as King. One King must depose the other. Even more than being deposed, ONE KING MUST SLAY THE OTHER so that there is no further possibility of a coup to regain the throne.

THE ENTERING IN OF CHRIST INTO THE SOUL of man is a conscious act of man’s will, which is preceded by the three BAPTISMS of death.

There must be a death before there can be a resurrection. The three baptisms are:

  1. Baptism in water, the baptizer being human
  2. Baptism in the Holy Ghost, the baptizer being Jesus Christ
  3. Baptism into Christ, the baptizer being the Holy Ghost

Christ enters into us, then we begin to enter into Christ. Just as the Holy Ghost enters into us, then we begin to live in the Spirit.

When Christ enters the soul as King, He begins His rule on earth within the individual. HE MUST REIGN TILL ALL ENEMIES ARE PUT UNDER HIS FEET, even death. We see, therefore, that He brings life and immortality to light by the gospel (II Timothy 1:10). The beast nature of man is being changed to the nature of the Christ.

We can see then that we can have Holy Spirit occupying our spirits, but not our souls as the five foolish virgins had in Matthew 25. This stands to reason why, although we receive the Holy Spirit, we still have the power to reject His counsel and have our own way. It also is the reason why we still fall into sin though having the Holy Spirit of God within us. The process of the Kingdom of God gently seeps into every area of our lives with our own free will consent, just as the leaven that leavens the whole three lumps of the woman’s meal in Matthew 13:33.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 148-149)

Thought for today: Let us give way in our souls to the Holy Spirit so that He may fill our vessel and conquer every sin in our lives.

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Scripture reading: Judges 11:29-40

In the book of Judges, Jephthah, a judge of Israel, swore to God to give as an offering the first thing that met him on his return from a victorious battle. His beloved and only daughter met him and he had to give her to the Lord.

His character was under severe testing. He did not flinch or say. “Lord, I did not mean this.” He just turned her over to God, and since we know that God does not accept human sacrifice, then this scripture could only mean that she was given to God as a bond servant of the temple for the rest of her life.

Numbers 30:2, “If a man vow a vow unto the Lord, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth.”

When one reads a law as the above, the first thought which comes is, “What relationship does this have to us and our time?” The Scripture says that the law was a school-master to bring us unto Christ. When therefore we come to Christ, we do not destroy the Law. Through Christ in me I will not become a Covenant breaker. My vows at Baptism – that I will follow the Lord in death, burial and resurrection – are kept by the power of the Holy Ghost.

Paul describes “Covenant Breakers” as one of the signs of the end-time and in our time we have seen some of the greatest examples of Covenant Breakers – Hitler for instance, signed a non-aggression pact with Russia while he was preparing to attack them. More recently Russia signed a S.A.L.T. treaty with the West and has broken almost every line of it. Nearer to home – husbands and wives make matrimonial vows to one another and break them in record numbers all over the world today.

Let us return unto the Lord, to our vows of salvation, our vows of baptism, and our vows to follow the Lord wherever He goes. Let us recommit ourselves to our families and to the family of God.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, October 1983)

Thought for today: Let us return unto the Lord and keep the covenants we have vowed unto Him.

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Scripture reading: Matthew 5:43-44

This title does not suggest that we could do evil to our enemies but not to our neighbours; what it does suggest is that we should do no evil at all.

Matthew 5:43-44, “Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”

Evil is continuously attacking the believer, and the idea is not so much to punish him or her, but it is to get the Christian to do evil in retaliation. There is no right about revenge. A blow struck in anger cannot be of God or righteousness. The child of God therefore is in a constant battle to keep himself from participating in evil. Devils will see to it that the word gets to you of what someone is saying about you, in order that you may say something against him. We see therefore, that evil is ever present with us and we must be on our double watch in order to overcome in this area.

God gives us a great deal of instructions pertaining to dealing with each other. Of course LOVE is the main ingredient in our human relationship one with another. Nevertheless, sometimes we do hurt those we love, sometimes inadvertently.

On this score, God placed four ordinances in the church (one is controversial). Each of these ordinances is a covenant with one another and with God. It is very important that we have the right relationships first at home and then with our neighbours (Christian brethren as well as sinners), then by these we learn to have right relationships with the world at large.

The ordinance of communion is directly aimed at us making a covenant with each other by the Blood and Body of Jesus Christ. The Blood is the Life which we share and the Body we are. Baptism is a covenant to follow Jesus in His ministry through His Body; marriage is a covenant with your partner to be one in Him; and washing of the saint’s feet, though controversial it may be, does serve to bring the brethren together in love.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, August 1983)

Thought for today: Evil is ever present with us and we must be on our double watch in order to overcome.

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Scripture reading: Hebrews 8:8-12

Outside of doctrines and people who preach differently from what the Bible says, it would be very clear to understand the two steps we should take. John the Baptist said that Jesus Christ is the man that will baptize you “in the Holy Ghost and fire.” Man baptizes you in water, but it is Christ that baptizes you in the Holy Ghost. You need these two operations. The reason is that GOD’S INTENTION is to fill man, to be in man, completely filling his whole being. Hebrews tells us that God wants to walk in us, to talk in us, to be our God, and for us to be His people. This cannot be done by accepting Jesus Christ as your Saviour and remaining there. If you are really born again, then you must seek life, you must go on. You must be baptized in the Holy Ghost. Paul clearly stated this. Go over it and go to God and ask Him, “Is this what I need?” God will tell you.

Baptism is a definite work of grace, depicted by the second piece of furniture, the Brazen Laver, in the Tabernacle of Moses. You must be baptized in water and then Jesus Christ will put His seal upon you by baptizing you in the Holy Ghost and fire. The question some will ask is, “What is the manifestation? How do I know I am baptized in the Holy Ghost?” The question I would ask is, “How do you know you are saved?”

You know that you are saved because a newness of life came into you. The things that you used to do, you just cannot do them anymore. The way you used to think, you do not think that way anymore. Your behavior has been changed. It can be pretty radical. Like me, the change was so radical, people had to notice it. In the baptism of the Holy Ghost, there is also a radical circumstance that occurs. What happens in the spiritual is that the Spirit of God, or the Holy Ghost, enters into your spirit and begins to overshadow your soul. There is no mistaking it. When He comes into your spirit, He begins to use your mouth. You speak the Word of God or receive prophecy or speak in another language, but there must be a manifestation that the Holy Ghost has taken over. You are no longer your own.

Of course, you are going to tell me about all the people who say they have received the Holy Ghost and misbehave. I have seen people speak in tongues and speak other languages who are not baptized in the Holy Ghost. A person can speak in tongues from the following three sources: God, a mental effort, or an evil spirit. I do not want to go into the details of this subject here, but those who want to hear more may write for audio recordings on the subject. The truth is that there are manifestations that must come at some time and there must be some utterance.

In Acts 2, the brethren were fasting and praying for ten days, so their hearts and minds were tuned to God. Verses 1-4, “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” Here is a manifestation (“cloven tongues”) we do not usually see now, when people are baptized in the Holy Ghost. Yet, it did happen at Azusa Street some 90 years ago.

(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 1, pg. 108-109)

Thought for today: Let us fulfill the purpose of our baptism by yielding to the Holy Spirit so that He can make us Holy.

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Scripture reading: Matthew 3:11

Did you know that the Bible is written in mysteries which are sealed until the appointed time? (See Daniel 12:8-9; Revelation 6.) We thank God that now is the appointed time when all these seals are being opened and the church can understand these mysteries. The first seal is representative of salvation. The second one, which we will be talking about today, is called baptism; it also includes consecration and sanctification. The outer court baptism, or first baptism, is baptism in water. We read this in Matthew 3:11. John the Baptist speaks here not only about one baptism but two – the baptism in water and the baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire. There is also a third baptism. This third baptism is found in 1 Corinthians 12:12-13, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all BAPTIZED INTO ONE BODY, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”

We go back to the Divine plan in the Word of God. Every word in Scripture is natural in its first dimension. It is spiritual in its second dimension and it is in the fullness in the third dimension. THE WORD OF GOD is a DIMENSIONAL WORD. Let me show you this in the Scriptures. In Ephesians 3:17 and 18, “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to COMPREHEND with all saints what is the BREADTH, and LENGTH, and DEPTH, and HEIGHT.” One Word can mean one thing in a certain dimension and when you look at it in a deeper dimension, you find it has depth to it. It has height, width, and length. Notice, there is a fourth dimension. It has depth. Normally, depth and height would be the same, but spiritually they are not.

Many of us contend about baptism and are distressed and deceived about what baptism really is. The Word of God shows that BAPTISM IS A COVENANT MADE WITH GOD by a physical operation. You say what kind of covenant is that? When you marry someone, there must be witnesses and a certificate and a ceremony. All this is necessary because we are still human beings. IN THE SPIRIT, when it is written, IT IS WRITTEN. We must go down into the water and be covered by the water and we must arise out of the water. This is the symbolism. If you do not do the symbol right, then you do not have a baptism.

The symbol of baptism is a three-step operation. We baptize in water and the water covers us. This is the symbol of death. We arise out of the water and are covered by the water. This is the symbol of the anointing of the Holy Spirit. When we go into a spiritual baptism, the Spirit must cover us over, just as the water covered us. Then you go into the fullness of baptism, learning your lesson from the physical operation.

God says that baptism is making a covenant with Him. The covenant is that you will go the whole way – through death, through burial, and through resurrection. This is the symbolism of baptism. All this is very Scriptural. I would encourage you to study this out for yourself. However, I am pressing it upon you that baptism in water is absolutely necessary. God told Moses the tabernacle must be built according to the pattern. Obedience is absolutely necessary in serving God.

(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 1, pg. 106-107)

Thought for today: Let us not be satisfied in just one dimension but press forward towards the fullness of our baptisms.

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