MODULE 3 - CHRIST'S RESURRECTION AND WATER


BAPTISM

 Many of us have a fairly good understanding of the meaning of Christ’s crucifixion; but often we do not fully grasp what Christ’s resurrection from the dead means to us as believers; and we understand even less about how water baptism relates to it. For that reason, we will take a closer look at what Jesus’ resurrection means to us as the Body of Christ, and what role the act of water baptism can and should play in our walking in a new life in Christ.


On this week, both the “Foundations of the Faith” and “Kingdom Harvesters” classes are sharing this same lesson. You will not have an assignment to hand-in as you normally do this week. We want you to meditate on the lesson, and reflect on what Christ’s redemptive work means to you, and how you can draw nearer to Him.You will notice that the format for this week’s lesson is slightly different. You are free to do the reading assignment as you will; but you will likely get a better understanding of the material if you look at the examples in the Book of Acts of those baptized AFTER you read the other passages of Scripture, and listen to the lecture. The Scripture passages are designed to walk you through the lesson, step-by-step.


Learning Objectives

For the student/disciple to gain a deeper understanding of the resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ; and for the student/disciple to gain an understanding of what water baptism represents for believers.


Things To Do On This Week:

  • First: “Foundations of the Faith” students- Review the correct answers from last week’s lesson ( Week 2)
  • Then ( all students): Study definitions for this lesson
  • Reading Assignment: Scripture passages
  • Watch Lecture:” Christ’s Resurrection and Water Baptism”
  • Review: Summary of the Lesson
  • Reflect: Reflect on your Christian walk. Seek ways to have a deeper commitment to the Lord, to recommit your life to Him, or even to get water baptized if you have not since you received Him as Savior and Lord.

Blessings,

Sandra Thomas Brown






WATCH THE RESURRECTION AND BAPTISM VIDEO


*partial video; review summary recap for balance for content

SUMMARY RECAP FOR THIS WEEK


In Philippians 3:10, Paul wrote, under the inspiration or prompting of God’s Holy Spirit, that he wanted to know Jesus, his Lord and Savior, in “ the power of his resurrection…”. One aspect of this will be when he, and all other believers from every generation, experience the physical resurrection when Christ calls for the church in the “ catching away”, or “ The Rapture”, as it is often called. However, “knowing” Jesus “ in the power of His/the resurrection” also refers to the internal, spiritual deliverance and “ renovation” that Christ’s resurrection has provided believers. We have been “justified” , made” right”/righteous, or in right standing with God, in part through Christ’s resurrection ( See 1 Corinthians 15:13-22). Just as Jesus’ substitutionary death on the cross for our sins took our sins away in the sight of God, His resurrection from the dead represented our own resurrection from death to a new life through Him, for those who receive Him.. God does not see us as the people that we used to be before we came to Christ. We are “ new creatures” or “ new creations” to Him through our faith in Jesus’ redemptive work( See 1 Corinthians 5:17, 21).


Water baptism represents that process. The word “ baptize(d)” comes from the Greek word “ baptizo”; and it means “ to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge”; “ to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean”; “ to overwhelm”.* In Acts 22:16, Paul recounted Ananias’ words to him: to “ wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord”. Someone reading this might be saying, “ But I thought that the blood of Jesus took my sins away”? The blood of Jesus did. In the salvation/”new birth” process, the blood of Jesus , in a somewhat “legal” fashion, and to satisfy the debt that we owed for our sins, took them away , just as He covered the sins of Israel before Christ came with the blood of animal sacrifices. However, God wanted more than that for His children. He wanted/wants a “washing” to take place in the heart; and He wants His children to conform their lives/lifestyles to His Word. Without there being a new birth on the inside, and a daily commitment to being “ doers of the Word, and not hearers only” , we would receive forgiveness for past sins, only to return to them.


In 1 Peter 3, we saw that the purpose of water baptism AFTER receiving Jesus as Lord and Savior, is to have “ the answer of a good conscience toward God”. Paul called this an “ operation” of God, or a supernatural process, like a surgery, that does something in a believer’s inner/inward man to make salvation and newness of life through Christ a reality to him or her. The water appears to not only serve as a “grave” , of sorts, to bury and leave behind the past life before Christ- strongholds/habits, unforgiveness, etc - but it also gives believers a sense of being cleansed on the inside. As you will notice in your reading in Acts, the new converts were water baptized right away after receiving salvation in every instance. [ I am persuaded that the reason that many people struggle with sins and habits from the past is that they do not follow through on doing the things necessary to live a victorious life in Christ. They don’t join a strong Word –based church. They don’t meditate in the Word, pray, get filled with the Holy Spirit, have Christian fellowship; and they don’t follow through on getting water-baptized, which is more than a ritual to make a statement to the world about their Christianity]. The apostles understood the significance of water baptism in helping people to become overcomers of sins. It is a major component in helping believers to walk in newness of life. [I pray that if there is anyone in these classes who has not been water baptized, that he or she will understand the importance of it, and get water baptized as soon as possible in obedience to the Word, and to develop a stronger walk with the Lord].


Definitions:


On this week you will learn 2 new terms that you may or may not understand, even if you have heard them before. Since the Old Testament was written in Hebrew, and the New Testament was written in Greek, you will see the word in English, the term in Greek, then the [ basic] meaning from the Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, by James Strong,2009 *.


-Justification ( definition 1): “dikaioma”- “ that which has been deemed right so as to have force of law”…” What has been established, and ordained by law, an ordinance”

“ A judicial decision, sentence”… the favorable judgment by which He [ God] acquits man and declares them[ him or her] acceptable to Him”


Justification ( definition 2): “dikaiosis”- “ The act of God declaring men free from guilt and acceptable to Him abjuring to be righteous.” [ In other words, God has retracted or recanted the “Guilty” decision against us as believers because of our faith in Christ’s redemptive work for us that we have received].

[ In other words, He says that we are “NOT GUILTY” of our sins because of Christ’s redemptive work that we , individually, receive by faith].


-Righteousness: “ dikaiosyne”- “…The condition acceptable to God”… = “ integrity, virtue, purity of life…correctness of thinking, feeling, acting”


Reading Assignment


Read passages in Philippians through Ephesians, first, then accounts in Acts of those who were water baptized IMMEDIATELY, AFTER conversion ( coming to Christ).You will notice a pattern that in EVERY instance, converts were baptized. Faith in the blood of Jesus is what saves us. It takes our sins away; BUT, water baptism is not a trivial ritual. It has significance, as we will see in this lesson.


Philippians 3:8-11; 1 Corinthians 15:13-22; 1 Peter3:15-21; Acts 22:6-16; Colossians 2:9-13; Ephesians 1:15-ch.2:10; Romans Ch. 6:1-7 ( a must read)

Acts 2:36-39

Acts 8:5-8,vss.14-16- at Samaria; and eunuch from Ethiopia

Acts 9:1-18; Ch22:6-16- at Paul’s conversion; and Ananias’ words to Paul in 22:16

Acts 10:1-5; vss.34-48- Peter at Cornelius’ house

Acts 16:13-15; 16-33: at Philippi, Lydia’s conversion and the Philippian jailer’s conversion

Acts 19:1-5: at Ephesus- disciples of John the Baptist