Summary: In Matthew chapter 3 we see John the Baptist speaking of two different baptisms; the baptism of repentance and baptism with the Holy Spirit. Are they the same or are they complimentary?

Two Baptisms and Thanksgiving

Please stand as we read our newest memory Scripture together …

Isaiah 9:6

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder. And His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”

And our memory refresher verses for today are …

Romans 10:9-10 (NLT)

“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

“For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.”

Please open your Bibles to Matthew 3:1-12

Before we read today’s Scripture I was wondering if anyone in the congregation has grown spiritually this past year and would like to tell us about it?

Has anyone come to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ this past year?

Has anyone come to the place where the Lord has enabled you to let go of something from your past?

Has anyone found freedom from something that had been holding them back spiritually in the past?

Has anyone found a new boldness in Christ and the ability to tell others about what He has done for you?

Has anyone found a deeper love for the Word of God?

Has anyone come to sense the presence of the Lord in worship more than in the past?

This is why we’re here. We are not here for entertainment or personal success.

We are here to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior.

We are here to learn how to glorify the King of Glory and to be useful in His kingdom here on earth. Not for us but for Him!

Today we’ll be talking about Two Baptisms and Thanksgiving

What does that mean? Well, let’s check it out in Matthew 3:1-12

Matthew 3:11 NIV

“I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes One who … will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”

John the Baptist said … I baptize you with water for repentance …

The amplified Bible says it this way, “As for me, I baptize you with water because of [your] repentance [that is, because you are willing to change your inner self - your old way of thinking, regret your sin and live a changed life] …”

This baptism doesn’t save you, instead it is a way of stating to the world that you HAVE been saved!

Baptism does not save you.

Baptism does not give you a ticket into heaven and if you think it does all it will do is get you wet.

Conversely, not being baptized does not send you to hell.

We are not saved by grace through faith AND a ritual. We are saved by God’s grace through faith and the ritual of baptism is proclaiming to the world what has happened in our lives.

All born again Christians SHOULD be baptized but just think about how many people in German concentration camps in WWII gave their lives to Jesus but never were able to be baptized before they were exterminated.

Do you believe they were all immediately relegated to eternal destruction?

Baptism is a wonderful thing.

Baptism can be an action filled with the grace of God.

Baptism can also be a meaningless ritual depending on the condition of the heart of the one being baptized.

Let me give you an example from the Old Testament …

In the Old Testament ritual sacrifices for sin could be meaningful to the giver and to the Lord.

Or, in the Old Testament ritual sacrifices for sin could be an empty gesture and disgusting to the Lord!

Just listen to this from Malachi chapter 1 where the LORD is speaking to the temple priests and to those who bring animals for sacrifice that they just want to get rid of …

Malachi 1:10-14 NIV

“Oh, that one of you would shut the temple doors, so that you would not light useless fires on My altar! I am not pleased with you,” says the LORD Almighty, “and I will accept no offering from your hands. My name will be great among the nations, from where the sun rises to where it sets. In every place incense and pure offerings will be brought to Me, because My name will be great among the nations,” says the LORD Almighty.

“But you profane it by saying, ‘The LORD’s table is defiled,’ and, ‘Its food is contemptible.’ And you say, ‘What a burden!’ and you sniff at it contemptuously,” says the LORD Almighty.

“When you bring injured, lame or diseased animals and offer them as sacrifices, should I accept them from your hands?” says the LORD. “Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the LORD. For I Am a great King,” says the LORD Almighty, “and My name is to be feared among the nations.”

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