SERMON – Matthew 3:13-17 – The Snow Globe Kingdom (Part 6) – Baptism vs. Baptism

 

Matthew 3:12-17 - The Snow Globe Kingdom (Part 6)

Baptism vs. Baptism

Preached by Andrew Ruth
Matthew 3:13-17

(Wonder why we call this "The Snow Globe Kingdom?" We explain it here.)

 God promises us 6 things visualized in Baptism.
3 Promises are pictured as we God into the Water.

In Baptism, God promises to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. We are so cleansed as God washes us in the blood of Jesus. 

Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy,cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. Ephesians 5:26

In Baptism, we are promised that we died to sin, when Christ died on the Cross, and we were raised to new life as Jesus was raised from the dead.

having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. 13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins. Col 2:12

In Baptism, God promises that we are credited with Christ's righteousness. We are given all the holiness and perfection Jesus achieved on our behalf. 

“God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." 2 Cor 5:21

Jesus received 3 gifts on the way out of the water, and because of Jesus, believers are promised the same 3 promises.

We are promised an OPEN HEAVEN. 

Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus,20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Hebrews 10:19-22

We are promised the HOLY SPIRIT.

At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:3-5

We are promised the FATHER'S DELIGHT.

Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” Gal 4:6

Matthew 1-3: THE SNOW GLOBE KINGDOM

On April 19, 2015, we started a new longterm Sermon Series to preach our way through the entirety of the Gospel according to Matthew. My overarching title for the whole Matthew Sermon Series is “FOR THE KING,” but to keep it fresh and interesting, we will break this extended study into smaller “mini-series.” Our first mini-series covers Matthew 1-3, and I’ve entitled it “THE SNOW GLOBE KINGDOM.”

Why call the first 3 chapters of Matthew’s Gospel, The Snow Globe Kingdom? Good question. I call them The Snow Globe Kingdom, because they are in many ways a miniature version of the entire Gospel. They present to us in introductory fashion, the major points about God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; about humanity at its best and worst; about God’s history of saving the world; about God’s mercy; and about God’s grace. We will see “in miniature” the beauty and the horror of the whole Bible.

In the first sentence, we will see a summary of God’s faithfulness, as we hear of the promises accomplished in Jesus. In the genealogy, we will see God’s judgment on arrogant, idolatrous kings, and his global mercy on repentant, scandalously sinful, pagan women. In the birth of Jesus to Mary, we will see how the Holy Spirit works on human beings, and how God overcomes the impossible. In Joseph’s response to this scandalous birth, we will see the definition of “righteousness.” In the Magi, we see human beings at their very best, idolaters worshiping false gods, and yet we will simultaneous see how God overcomes our ignorance to lead us to worship and adore gladly the King of the Jews. In Herod’s murderous, lying rage, we see ourselves at our worst, usurping, mutinous, and hostile to God, like Adam and Eve, rejecting the King/God inorder to preserve our own authority and sovereignty. In all of this, we will see a baby, named Jesus, who recapitulates the history of Israel, and the history of humanity. We will see a baby, vulnerable, loved and hated aggressively and somehow “God With Us” in our vulnerability and subject to our hostility. In all of it, we will see the bad news about ourselves and the good news about Jesus.

Because of that it reminds me of a Snow Globe, a minute, intricate, beautiful version of a Kingly Palace. I hope in these first 3 chapters to tour the grounds and the chambers of this beautiful lifesaving message.