In Acts 2, the Holy Spirit came down on the disciples and Peter preached the gospel. 3000 people wanted to receive Jesus that day!
They wanted to know what to do next. Peter told them, “Repent, and be baptised, every one of you.” (Acts 2:38)
Repent: to “change your mind” and believe that Jesus is the only way.
Baptise: an outward act to tell everyone that we believe Jesus is the only hope for salvation.
Significance of Baptism:
Water Baptism is a declaration of our faith in the finished work of Jesus; it is NOT a ritual to ensure salvation.
When we are baptised, we identify with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
We die with Christ — our old self died with Him.
We rise again — we have new life (Jesus’ life) in us now.
Romans 6:3-5 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.
Colossians 2:12 And you were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.
Baptism is an act of faith. Faith is the “active ingredient” at baptism, and without faith, baptism means nothing. This is what distinguishes baptism from bathing.
When we have faith in Christ and His finished work on the cross, then we can identify with Christ’s own death, burial and resurrection.
We need to understand and believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that He died for our sins and that He was raised from the dead.
In being baptized into Christ we “clothe” ourselves with Him or “put on Christ”. When God looks at us he does not see our sins, but Christ’s righteousness instead.
In Genesis 3:21, after Adam and Eve sinned (and died spiritually), God provided them with animal skins to clothe them and give them a covering. This required the shedding of the blood of animals. In the Old Testament a sacrifice for sin always required the shedding of blood.
Under the New Covenant the shedding of blood was still required, but this time it was to be by the sinless Lamb of God that Jesus Himself shed on the cross. And just as God clothed Adam and Eve, so too, He now clothes us — but now it is with Christ Jesus. Amen!
2. Suggested Activities
Ask kids who have been baptised to share their testimony.