Written by Stephen Kingery

Baptism is perhapsrepparttar most misunderstood and misinterpreted concept inrepparttar 140622 Bible. There are those who would have us believe that baptism is not necessary for salvation. Others will say that it a good thing to do, and we really ought to, but it is strictly optional. Still others say that baptism is necessary, but only to joinrepparttar 140623 local church.

Not only do Christians disagree on whether baptism is a necessary part of salvation, there is also disagreement as torepparttar 140624 form and who should receive it. Some say that infants can, should, or even must be baptized. While others contend that one should be ofrepparttar 140625 age of accountability. There is disagreement as to whetherrepparttar 140626 form of baptism should be by immersion, sprinkling, or pouring.

Allrepparttar 140627 disagreement noted above is purely onrepparttar 140628 part of mankind. The Scriptures are in full agreement on all these points. If one readsrepparttar 140629 New Testament he will find no place where more than one form of baptism is used and he will not find a multitude of opinions as torepparttar 140630 necessity of baptism for salvation. So, let's see exactly whatrepparttar 140631 Scriptures have to say aboutrepparttar 140632 subject of Baptism.

Is baptism necessary for salvation? Well, Jesus commanded it, andrepparttar 140633 apostles taught and practiced it. Jesus said, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned." (Mark 16:16) How much clearer must we have it said byrepparttar 140634 Lord Himself than this. He clearly says salvation is dependant upon our being obedient and submitting ourselves to baptism. In another place Jesus told His disciples, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them inrepparttar 140635 name ofrepparttar 140636 Father and ofrepparttar 140637 Son and ofrepparttar 140638 Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even torepparttar 140639 end ofrepparttar 140640 age." (Matthew 28:19,20) Why would Jesus tell His disciples to baptize if it were not necessary? Don't you think that ifrepparttar 140641 Lord had intended baptism to be optional that He would not have made such a strict command out of it here. And if it were not necessary at all, why would He even mention it here in what we call "The Great Commission."

We saw inrepparttar 140642 above passage that Jesus commanded His disciples to baptize. We see inrepparttar 140643 book of Acts that they did just that. We could call Actsrepparttar 140644 book of conversions, because only in this book do we see actual cases of people being converted to Christian. As a matter of fact, there are eight specific cases of people being converted inrepparttar 140645 book of Acts.

We believe, and teach, that salvation consists of five acts or actions onrepparttar 140646 part ofrepparttar 140647 one being converted. These acts are, belief in Jesus asrepparttar 140648 Christ,repparttar 140649 Son ofrepparttar 140650 living God; repentance; confession of one's faith before man; baptism; and faithful living tillrepparttar 140651 end. Inrepparttar 140652 eight occasions of conversions inrepparttar 140653 book of Acts, baptism isrepparttar 140654 only one that is specifically mentioned in each and every case. Let's take a look at each case and what is said concerning baptism.

The three thousand at Pentecost: "Then Peter said to them 'Repent, and let every one of you be baptized inrepparttar 140655 name of Jesus Christ forrepparttar 140656 remission of sins; and you shall receiverepparttar 140657 gift ofrepparttar 140658 Holy Spirit.'" (Acts 2:38)

The Samaritans: "But when they believed Philip as he preachedrepparttar 140659 things concerningrepparttar 140660 kingdom of God andrepparttar 140661 name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeingrepparttar 140662 miracles and signs which were done." (Acts 8:12,13)

The Eunuch: "Now as they went downrepparttar 140663 road, they came to some water. Andrepparttar 140664 eunuch said, 'See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?' Then Philip said, 'If you believe with all your heart, you may.' And he answered and said, 'I believe that Jesus Christ isrepparttar 140665 Son of God.' So he commandedrepparttar 140666 chariot to stand still. And both Philip andrepparttar 140667 eunuch went down intorepparttar 140668 water, and he baptized him." (Acts 8:36-38)

Saul of Tarsus: "Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized." (Acts 9:18); and "And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling onrepparttar 140669 name ofrepparttar 140670 Lord." (Acts 22:16)

Cornelius: "Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have receivedrepparttar 140671 Holy Spirit just as we have? And he commanded them to be baptized inrepparttar 140672 name ofrepparttar 140673 Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days." (Acts 10:47,48)

Lydia: "And when she and her household were baptized, she begged us, saying, 'If you have judged me to be faithful torepparttar 140674 Lord, come to my house and stay.' And she constrained us." (Acts 16:15)

"Be Still, And Know That I Am God"

Written by Stephen Kingery

I was recently asked to give devotions at our annual family reunion. The Bible text I used asrepparttar basis for my remarks was, "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted amongrepparttar 140621 nations, I will be exalted inrepparttar 140622 earth!" (Psalm 46:10) In my family were several preachers (my grandfather was one of great stature), singers, piano players, church leaders, and good Christian men and women. I talked aboutrepparttar 140623 Christian heritage of our family and that throughrepparttar 140624 lives of those who have gone on to their reward, God has given us that remain a message: "Be still, and know that I am God." As I reflect on this passage, I realize that God has given us this message in many different ways. In this article I would like to share with you just a few that come to mind.

The Nature of Christians:

If you are a Christian and have been faithful torepparttar 140625 fellowship ofrepparttar 140626 church, I am sure that you know many people who are devout Christians. Have you ever stopped to think aboutrepparttar 140627 nature of these fine people. The fruit ofrepparttar 140628 Spirit as given in Galatians 5:22,23 is evident in their lives. We can see a love forrepparttar 140629 Lord which is boundless as well as a deep love for their fellow Christians and all who are outside of Christ. Asrepparttar 140630 old song says, "There is joy unspeakable" in their lives. Through good times and bad,repparttar 140631 joy of being a Christian is ever present in their daily Christian walk. We see peace, patience and kindness at every turn. Their goodness, gentleness and self-control is a part of everything that they do. And their faithfulness to Christ andrepparttar 140632 church are foremost in their lives. As we look atrepparttar 140633 example that these people have set for us, that message from God rings out, "Be still, and know that I am God."

The Beauty of Nature:

Unfortunately I am not able to get out intorepparttar 140634 country and enjoyrepparttar 140635 beauty of allrepparttar 140636 things God has created. I long forrepparttar 140637 day that I can retire from my job and spend time in nature. But as I look and beholdrepparttar 140638 beauty of God's creation, I truly stand in awe. To seerepparttar 140639 beauty ofrepparttar 140640 trees, flowers, shrubs and allrepparttar 140641 many varieties of plants is wonderful. To gaze into a beautiful blue sky with white fluffy clouds brings back memories of childhood. To watchrepparttar 140642 uniqueness and gracefulness ofrepparttar 140643 many animals of creation is also a sight to behold. To seerepparttar 140644 majesty ofrepparttar 140645 Rocky Mountains orrepparttar 140646 vastness ofrepparttar 140647 Atlantic Ocean we realize how small we really are. When we see these things, reach down to pick a dainty flower or feelrepparttar 140648 warm summer breeze we are reminded, "Be still, and know that I am God."

The Bible:

Are you a student ofrepparttar 140649 Bible? I certainly hope so. If you read and study it you will soon see what a wonderful book it is. It isrepparttar 140650 Word of God. In its pages you will discover over and over againrepparttar 140651 love God has for His creation, man. You will seerepparttar 140652 awesomeness of creation,repparttar 140653 gentleness of Christ andrepparttar 140654 boldness ofrepparttar 140655 apostles as they establishrepparttar 140656 church. You will learn how to overcome sin, how to praise God and how to become a Christian. In its sixty-six books you will learn how God has dealt with man. You will read ofrepparttar 140657 faithful andrepparttar 140658 unfaithful. You will find books of law, history, poetry, prophecy and instruction in how to live a good Christian life. You will see Christ evident in it from Geneses through Revelation. All ofrepparttar 140659 Bible is about this one glorious message, "Be still, and know that I am God."

The Universe:

One of my favorite songs has these words: "Oh Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder, consider allrepparttar 140660 worlds Thy hands have made. I seerepparttar 140661 stars, I hearrepparttar 140662 rolling thunder; Thy power throughoutrepparttar 140663 universe displayed." To sing "How Great Thou Art" and truly considerrepparttar 140664 awesome creation of God will bring a tear to your eye. To think how vastrepparttar 140665 universe is and to know that God spoke it all into existence is to know how great He is. On a clear night go outside and beholdrepparttar 140666 moon and stars. You too will hear that message, "Be still, and know that I am God."

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