Summary: A baptism message
Romans 1:16-19 "I Am Not Ashamed!" (A Baptism Message)
Down South they tell about a Baptist minister who preached about baptism by immersion every Sunday. His congregation agreed with his doctrine, but they were getting pretty tired of hearing about it every week. Nobody wanted to hurt his feelings, but they’d had enough!
The deacons came up with what they thought would be a diplomatic way to solve the problem. They complimented him on his pulpit skills and suggested to him that since he was such a natural preacher they wanted to try an experiment. Just before he stepped into the pulpit, they would hand him a piece of paper with a scripture text on it. Laying it on thick, they said, "We think that you’re so good, that you can preach a great sermon with no preparation at all -- just that slip of paper."
Of course, with an approach like that, the preacher couldn’t bear to turn them down. So, the deacons started searching the Scriptures for a text, which couldn’t possibly be related to baptism by immersion. Finally they agreed on the opening verse of Genesis: "In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth." They figured there was absolutely nothing in that text that had anything to do with baptism.
When they handed the text to him, the old preacher read it aloud three times. Then he said, "God created the heavens and the earth. If I remember my geography, the earth is one-fourth land and three-fourths water. And that water brings me to my subject for the day: Baptism by immersion."
Now, you might not think that our passage this morning has anything to do with baptism, and you’d be right.
It doesn’t have anything to do with baptism directly.
But it does give us a truth that goes hand and hand with the ordinance of baptism.
That truth is found in verse 16.
Paul said, "I am not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes..."
Those individuals who were baptised this morning were not ashamed of the gospel.
At some point they came to understand that important truth: it is the power of God to save everyone who believes.
They believed and received the righteousness that comes only from God.
I. But how did they reach that point?
A. They realized they were sinners - that they had sinned against God.
1. Romans 3:23 "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."
B. They repented of their sins
1. Revelation 3:19 "Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent."
C. They requested God’s salvation through Jesus Christ
1. Revelation 3:20 "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with
him, and he with me."
2. Romans 10:13 "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
D. They received Christ as their Savior
1. John 1:12-13 "... to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God - children born
not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.”
II. So they received Christ as their Savior but why were they baptised?
A. Several reasons, but first I want you to know what baptism didn’t do for them.
1. It didn’t make them believers. It showed that they already believed.
2. It didn’t save them. Only faith in Jesus does that.
3. It didn’t make them a Christian. Ephesians 2:8-9 says, "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith -- and this not from
yourselves, it is the gift of God -- not by works, so that no-one can boast."
4. Baptism doesn’t make you a Christian, going to church doesn’t make you a Christian, taking the Lord’s supper doesn’t make you a Christian, doing good things and following the 10 commandments doesn’t make you a Christian. Faith in Jesus Christ is the only thing that can make you a Christian.
B. What did it do for them?
1. It illustrated their new life as a Christian.
a. It is the outward symbol of their new life in Christ.
• Romans 6:4: “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”
2. It showed that they identified with Christ’s burial and resurrection.
a. We call it a "public profession."
b. Baptism is a visual picture of what Christ has done for us.
• 1 Corinthians 15:3-4: "For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,…"