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Summary: Baptism Message preached at a baptismal service for 3 church members in September 2012.

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BAPTISM SERVICE Defining Moments and Choices.

Each of us has a story of our life.

A story made up of events and circumstances, moments and choices.

A story that contains good days and not so good days.

____ story is different from _____ and ____.

Your story is different from mine, and different from the person sitting next to you, because it is your story.

Each of us have different experiences, different highlights, different low-points,

different things that help shape us.

And each of us have special moments in our lives that help define who we are.

Moments that change us, moments that shape us.

Maybe, the day you passed your driving test.

Or, the day you bought your own home.

The day your first child was born.

The day you were given an all clear by the doctor.

Or the day you first discovered Elim and met Dave Redbond for the first time.

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Defining moments. Significant moments.

For ____&____ today is a significant day in their lives.

Today is a significant day that is a result of another defining moment in their lives.

Now I can see that has got you thinking.

“What is He on about?”

“They were just baptised - isn’t this the defining moment?”

Actually - Baptism is an outward symbol of something that has already happened in their lives- it is a symbol of a defining moment that has already taken place.

The defining moment when _____ & ____ trusted Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.

That defining moment when they realised for themselves they wanted to be in a real relationship with the God who loves them.

That defining moment when they realised that by placing their trust in Jesus and asking Him into their lives the that their sins would be forgiven.

The defining moment when they realised that God cares for them and has a plan and purpose for their lives.

The defining moment when they chose to accept the free gift of forgiveness and eternal life that God gives to everyone who trusts in Jesus as Saviour.

The defining moment when it all made sense.

The moment they realised for themselves that

The Bible is not just a collection of stories.

God is real.

Jesus Christ really lived.

He was really crucified.

He really died on the cross.

Three days later He really rose from the Grave.

Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven and is alive today,

and one day He is coming back.

The defining moment when they understood that it was all really true.

The defining moment when they were Saved.

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Tonight, they have chosen to be baptised to show what has already happened in their lives.

A symbol, a public statement, of the choice they have made to believe in and trust in Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.

A statement that they will follow the teachings of the Bible and commandments of God.

A symbol of the trust they have in Jesus to cleanse and renew their lives and direct them with purpose.

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Water Baptism is symbolic of many things: cleansing, burial, resurrection, the death of the old, the birth of the new.

Water baptism is symbolic,

there is nothing special about the water used -

it came from the tap,

we warm it up with a little water heater,

there is nothing special about the water -

it has no special properties of powers.

But it is symbolic of God’s grace, mercy and love.

Baptism symbolises a real connection to God - a real relationship.

The Bible tells us in the book of Romans “we are joined with Christ Jesus in baptism” (Rom 6:3).

Today, this baptismal service, is symbolic of ____ & ____ & ____ commitment to join with Jesus and follow Him.

In the Bible in Matthew Chapter 3 Verses 13-17 there is the record of Jesus being baptised in the Jordan River - Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptised by John. But John tried to talk Him out of it. “I am the one who needs to be baptised by you,” he said, “so why are you coming to me?” But Jesus said, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires.” So John agreed to baptise Him. After His baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on Him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.”

The Jordan River - a useful little river, but nothing special about the water.

Jesus wades out into this ordinary river, the water swirling around Him and approaches John the Baptist and John recognises who Jesus is.

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