A Joyous Occasion

Once there was a pastor who was baptizing converts. He accidentally stepped on the foot of one of the participants. At that time the poor participant was suffering from an ingrown toenail. When the baptism was over, the pastor was shocked to see the blood in the water. He begged for her forgiveness. “Why did you suffer this pain in silence,” the pastor wanted to know.

She replied, “I thought it was part of the ceremony.”

Seriously now, there’s no need for blood in the water because the precious blood of the Lord was already poured out on the cross 2,000 years ago. Baptism doesn’t save us. Faith in Christ saves us. “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.” (Ephesians 2:8-9, NIV) But, that doesn’t mean that we put it off or that we undermine its significance. We believe this is an initial, important act of obedience. It’s a public declaration of faith. Faith in Christ alone for salvation is the only requirement for baptism.

The Lord Jesus instructed His disciples to remember His death and resurrection. He gave two visible symbols (called “ordinances”) as reminders—baptism and communion. They are object lessons that represent great spiritual truths for believers. “When we are lowered into the water, it is like the burial of Jesus; when we are raised up out of the water, it is like the resurrection of Jesus.” (Romans 6:4, The Message)

Thus, I congratulate our dear brothers and sisters who will declare their faith in the Lord through water baptism. Let us pray that they would “continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” (Colossians 2:6b-7, NIV) They will be baptized in the anniversary service of the MGC at 10:00AM today. We have cancelled the Young Adult BS so that we can witness the baptism.

I also encourage everyone to join our 24th anniversary celebration. Always remember: God “who began a good work in [us] will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6)

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Eyriche Cortez
English Worship Service

P.S.
For those who will be baptized today, we have a last-minute briefing. We will meet at during the fellowship time at the Annex building. Thank you.

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