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Location: Greensboro, NC, United States

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Waters of Baptism as Journeying Through the Wilderness

"He rebuked the Red Sea also, and it was dried up: so he led them through the depths, as through the wilderness" (Psalm 106:9, KJV). Israel's baptism in the Red Sea prefigured the baptism in the wilderness that they were about to undergo. Likewise, Jesus' baptism was immediately followed by his testing in the wilderness. "Jesus said to them, 'You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?' And they said to him, 'We are able.' And Jesus said to them, 'The cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized, but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared'" (Mark 10:38-40, ESV) Jesus' baptism symbolized the suffering he was to endure; in the same way, the Christian's baptism not only points back to Jesus' baptism, being in union with him and his salvation, but it also symbolizes the sanctifying suffering each Christian experiences in this life, the wilderness journey prior to entering the promised country.

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