Summary: What is it that saves us and keeps us walking with Jesus. Complete obedience.
They asked "What must we do to be saved? Peter replied Repent and be Baptized for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit."
Complete obedience, do everything we are required to do in order to receive the prize.
In the Great commission we are told first to
Go Make Disciples:
What is it to make a disciple?
1. When Jesus made disciples he first
We do the same when we invite people to services, Bible Study, or any other church function.
The Woman at the Well John 4:29
1. She had a one on one encounter with Jesus
2. She went and told others where He was
3. Come and see for yourself
John the Baptist
1. There goes the Lamb of God
2. He must increase I must decrease
Andrew and Philip
1. Met with Jesus then went and got Peter and Nathaniel.
2. They were always introducing people to Jesus.
We invite then we baptize
1. When someone is convinced and they want to be a part we baptize
2. In the Early Church it was done immediate and it was without question
3. Total obedience to the Word of God.
The issue is not baptism, or believism, or any of the other issues that cloud the salvation story. The issue is simply complete obedience. When we go to the doctors office and the doctor gives a prescription and tells us to abstain from certain activity or to do something we usually do it without question. When teachers tell us we must do a certain amount of work to pass the class, we usually do it without question. When our employer tells us what we must do to stay in that employ and get paid, we usually do it without question. Why is then when God tells us what we must to do to be saved, we question?
Namaan was a commander in the Syrian army. He was a man in good standing. Yet he contracted leprosy. He wanted to be healed when his wife’s mistress told about a Prophet Elisha in Israel. Namaan went to see him. Elisha did not come out to meet him, he sent his servant instead. Namaan was upset at that. It would be like going to the doctor’s office and as you check in the receptionist says "Here is your prescription and the doctors orders, just follow them." We would be a bit taken back by that.
Elisha’s prescription is to dip in the Jordan seven times. Seven times is implied because when Namaan finally obeys, that is what he did. Dip in the Jordan??? There are cleaner rivers in Syria, why not dip there? Again going back to that doctor’s visit, you look at the prescription and it says take aspirin 3 times a day. Aspirin you say? Why not Tylenol or Advil? Your doctor insists, take aspirin.
When I was in the Navy I sailed to Cuba. I saw the beautiful waters of the Caribbean; I sailed through the Bermuda Triangle twice and saw the beautiful white sandy beaches. Then a few weeks later we were in NY and the East River, yuck. Namaan would be comparing the Jordan and the rivers in Syria much like we would the East River and the Caribbean. Yet Namaan, at the behest of his servant, goes to the Jordan and dips seven times. It is at this complete obedience that Namaan is cured.