segunda-feira, 26 de dezembro de 2011
To spread the gospel of the water (Jesus' baptism) and the Spirit that enables people to solve their problem
To spread the gospel of the water (Jesus' baptism) and the Spirit that enables people to solve their problem of sin based on the pure Word of God revealed in the Bible.
Although there are many Christians today, we see that many of them in fact only attend church on Sundays, and no clear standard and Word of salvation is found in their hearts. But Jesus said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God" (John 3:5).
What is being born again here? Being born again is not just quitting one's sinful life and beginning a new life after believing in Jesus, as most people think. Though this would be good, this in itself is not being born again, nor being saved. When the Bible tells us that we must be born again of water and the Spirit, it means that "sinners must repent, believe in the baptism of Jesus and the blood of the Cross, and thereby receive the remission of sin into their hearts and become righteous." In other words, it means being born from above. This is not a change that comes from human beings, but it is a transformation that comes from God.
In 1 John 5:6-7, the Bible says, "This is He who came by water and blood-Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one." Jesus came to this earth by water and blood. Jesus was born of the body of the Virgin Mary incarnated into the flesh of a man, and when He turned 30, He was baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. The works of salvation that make us be born again of water and the Spirit began with the birth of Jesus, and as He washed away the sins of the world by receiving His baptism from John the Baptist, the representative of humanity, in the Jordan River.
We know very well that Jesus was vicariously condemned in our place by shedding His blood on the Cross. But why did Jesus, God Himself who was sinless, have to bear this condemnation on the Cross? There are causes and effects in all things. That Jesus died on the Cross for our sins is very closely related to the event of His baptism, when He was baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River, which was a form of the laying on of hands. The Apostle Peter said in 1 Peter 3:21 that baptism is an antitype that saves us. This then means that Jesus came by baptism and the Cross.
In the baptism of Jesus is hidden the mystery of the remission of sin, the mystery of being born of water and the Spirit. If, in spite of this, we were to ignore this baptism of Jesusand do not believe in it, then we ourselves would be betraying the will of God and forsaking our own salvation. The free Christian books of The New Life Mission provide a clear explanation of the standard of salvation by grounding it in thorough and solid Biblical foundations, and they address the basic concepts of salvation as to how one can be born again of water and the Spirit.