March 21, 2017

But John the Baptist is not exactly warm to all those who come to him seeking cleansing...

But John is not exactly warm to all those who come to him seeking cleansing...

He told some Pharisees and Sadducees (and today the christian)who came for the ritual baptism,

You children of serpents! You brood of vipers! Did someone suggest you flee from the wrath that is upon us? If you think that simply hopping in the Jordan will cleanse you, then you are sorely mistaken. Your life must bear the fruits of turning toward righteousness. Nor are you correct if you think that being descended from Abraham is enough to make you holy and right with God. Yes, the children of Abraham are God’s chosen children, but God can adopt as daughters and sons anyone He likes—He can turn these stones into sons if He likes.

True repentance is an inward thing which hath its seat in the mind and heart...

Matthew 3:7-8: But when he (John the baptist) saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, You brood of vipers (poisonous snakes)! Who warned you to flee and escape from the wrath and indignation [of GOD against disobedience] that is coming?
8 Bring forth fruit that is consistent with repentance [let your lives prove your change of heart...show that you have really changed your hearts and lives.]

(Many of the Pharisees and Sadducees came to the place where John was baptizing people. When John saw them, he said, “You ·are snakes [T brood/offspring of vipers]! Who warned you to ·run [slither; L flee] away from God’s coming ·punishment [wrath; retribution]? 8 ·Do the things [L Produce the fruit] ·that show you really have changed your hearts and lives [that prove your repentance; L of repentance].)

Matthew 6:33: But seek first the kingdom of GOD and HIS righteousness...

Resources » Asbury Bible Commentary » Part III: The New Testament » MATTHEW » Commentary» I. The Person of Jesus Messiah, Son of God (1:1–4:16) » B. Preparation of Jesus for Ministry: Baptism and Temptation (3:1–4:16)
B. Preparation of Jesus for Ministry: Baptism and Temptation (3:1–4:16)
A gap of several years exists between the end of ch. 2 and the ministry of John in ch. 3. Apparently it did not contribute to Matthew's purpose in writing to include accounts describing the boyhood and adolescence of Jesus. But Matthew is very much interested in the baptism of Jesus, which contains the witness of John (3:1-12) and the witness of God (vv. 13-174:1-11).
John declares that Jesus is the coming one (ho erchomenos, a term that is essentially equivalent to “Christ”; cf. 11:2-3), whose power goes far beyond anything John could boast and who is infinitely majestic and glorious. John is unworthy even to be his slave (3:11). In this way John points to the incomparable greatness of Jesus and suggests that Jesus is much more than a prophet. In fact, to think of Jesus as a prophet in the line of the OT prophets is to miss entirely the true meaning and significance of Jesus (cf. 16:13-17). This is not business as usual; in Jesus God is doing something utterly new and extraordinary.
John proclaims that this coming one brings with him blessing and judgment. All persons will experience his baptism. For some it will be “baptism of the Spirit,” a pouring out of the Spirit that will enable the recipients to participate fully in the community of God that Jesus, as the Messiah, establishes. For others it will be “baptism of fire,” the eternal punishment that Jesus, as Judge, will dispense to those who reject God and the Christ whom he has sent (3:11b-12).
In light of this reality, what ought persons to do? John answers, “Repent” (3:2). It is only through repentance that one may escape the judgment of this mighty Christ and experience the blessings that he is able to give.
God gives his own testimony to Jesus in 3:17. Here the heavenly voice declares, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” Jesus is the Son of God in the sense that he has his origin in God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit (1:18-25). By virtue of this divine conception, Jesus experiences an intimacy and unity with God that is absolutely unique (cf. 11:25-30).
Moreover, the immediate context indicates that Jesus is the Son of God as one who perfectly obeys the will of his Father. In 3:15 Jesus submits to baptism, not because he has sin to confess, but to fulfill all righteousness. The obedience of Jesus as Son of God is especially prominent in the temptation story, which follows immediately. There Jesus is tempted precisely in his role as Son of God (4:36), and as Son of God he refuses to yield to the temptations of the Devil (4:1-11).
One additional comment should be made regarding 3:1-4:11. Jesus' baptism and temptation serve to equip him for his ministry. The descent of the Spirit upon Jesus in 3:16 indicates that the entire ministry of Jesus is an expression of the power of the Spirit. Indeed, the work of the Spirit in the life and ministry of Jesus is manifested already in the temptation. It is through the might of the Spirit that Jesus rejects Satan's urgings that he fulfill his messianic calling by the performance of great, spectacular signs rather than through God's ordained path of suffering and death (see 16:21-2327:32-54). Hence, after his baptism and temptation Jesus is ready to position himself for messianic ministry in Galilee (4:12-16).

Matthew 3:7 "But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?"
The Pharisees and Sadducees were hung up in tradition. The Pharisees were what we would call the people of the middle class today. The Sadducees were from the upper class, and some from high-priest families. The law was everything to them. They really thought themselves better than just the average person. They were righteous in their own sight.
There were about 6,000, legalistic sect of the Jews who were known for their rigid adherence to the ceremonial fine points of the law. Their name means “separated one.” Jesus’ interaction with the Pharisees was usually adversarial. He rebuked them for using human tradition to nullify Scripture.
When John called them "generation of vipers", he really was revealing their hidden sins. They were Self-proclaimed experts. He knew their personality and knew that from these groups would come much opposition to Jesus.
The Sadducees were known for their denial of things supernatural. They denied the resurrection of the dead (22:23), and the existence of angels (Acts 23:8). Unlike the Pharisees, they rejected human tradition and scorned legalism. They accepted only the Pentateuch as authoritative. They tended to be wealthy, aristocratic members of the priestly tribe, and in the days of Herod their sect controlled the temple, though they were fewer in number than the Pharisees.
Pharisees and Sadducees had little in common. Pharisees were ritualists; Sadducees were rationalists. Pharisees were legalists; Sadducees were liberals. Pharisees were separatists; Sadducees were compromisers and political opportunists. Yet they united together in their opposition to Christ (22:15-6, 23-24, 35). John publicly addressed them as deadly snakes.
“The wrath to come”: John’s preaching echoed the familiar Old Testament theme of promised wrath in the Day of the Lord (Ezek. 7:19; Zep. 1:18). This must have been a particularly stinging rebuke to the Jewish leaders, who imagined that divine wrath was reserved only for non-Jews.
Verses 8-10: “Fruits meet for repentance:” John rebuked the Pharisees, asking them to give evidence of “fruits meet for repentance” (verse 8). There can be no doubt that the New Testament concept of repentance grows out of its usage in the Old Testament, where the term (Hebrew Shub), means far more than an intellectual change of mind.
Genuine repentance proves itself by the fruits of a changed life. John the Baptist further rebuked them for their belief in nationalistic salvation.
“Abraham to our father” means that they were trusting in their physical descent for salvation, rather than in God, which would have constituted a spiritual relationship to Abraham the “father of the faithful.”
Matthew 3:8 "Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:"
Repentance itself is not a work, but works are its inevitable fruit. Repentance and faith are inextricably linked in Scripture Repentance means turning from one’s sin, and faith is turning to God (1 Thess. 1:9). They are like opposite sides of the same coin. That is why both are linked to conversion (Mark 1:15; Acts 3:19-21).
Note that the works John demanded to see were “fruit” of repentance. But repentance itself is no more a “work” that faith is.

The Christian Baptism Vow: To Seek & Serve HIM.....

The Value of the Christian Baptism Vow:

A vow was made to dedicate their lives to serve the LORD God
They entered into a covenant to seek...

2 Chronicles 15:12 King James Version (KJV)
And they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers with all their heart and with all their soul

2 Chronicles 15
V 1–7: WORD As the Spirit of God speaks through Azariah to Asa, he heeds God’s word to forsake all that is wrong and to follow and obey God. He knows the choice is to seek God and find Him, or forsake Him and be forsaken. His strength will be through his seeking God, who will reward him. V 8: WAYS Hearing God’s word through Azariah changes the ways of Asa. All abominable idols in Judah and Benjamin are removed and the altar of the Lord is restored. V 9–15: WORSHIP Asa gathers all from Judah and Benjamin, and all Israelites with a faithful heart who have moved into Judah, to worship God with sacrifices and offerings. They enter into a covenant to seek God wholeheartedly. Those who refuse to covenant are to be put to death. The people rejoice in this oath and God blesses them with rest. V 16–19: WILLINGNESS Asa’s willingness to put God first includes removing Maachah, as queen mother, because she made an obscene image of Asherah. Asa cuts this down, crushes it, and burns it by the Brook Kidron. He also brings into the house of God all the dedicated items of silver and gold. With God’s help and rest, Asa enters into a war-free period.

Romans 6:4 King James Version (KJV)

Therefore we are buried with HIM by baptism into death: that like as CHRIST was raised up from the dead by the glory of the FATHER, even so we also should walk in newness of life...

Romans 6
V 1–4: CONTINUE SINNING? Paul picks on the objections of some by asking if we are already justified, shall we sin more to show how great that justification is? He exclaims dogmatically, ‘Certainly not!’ Spiritually we were buried into Christ in His death. His resurrection life has become ours. If we are truly born again, we will want to walk in newness of life. Baptism echoes that meaning. V 5–7: CRUCIFIED SELF Just as we share in Christ’s resurrection, we share in His crucifixion. Our position, as those risen with Christ, is therefore that our ‘old man’ (our unsaved self) is crucified with Christ. I cannot claim the one without the other. V 8–14: CALCULATED SEQUENCE We are to reckon ourselves to be ‘dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord’. That reckoning is based upon the knowledge that we are both crucified with Christ and also risen with Him in our status before God. God never asks us to make false calculations! This reckoning results in the sequence of logic and holiness that if we are dead to sin and alive to Christ we must not let sin reign in our bodies, but we must present our bodies as alive from the dead to be instruments of righteousness to God. We are no longer under the dominion of sin and death caused by the law, but we are under God’s grace. V 15–19: CONSECRATED SLAVES We are not now the slaves of the broken law, fearing judgement and death, but we present ourselves as slaves of ‘righteousness for holiness’ having been set free from one tyrannical master, and become the willing slaves of another Master who is gracious. V 20–23: CHRIST’S SALVATION Previously, we faced death and produced fruit of which we were ashamed. Now we have God’s gift of ‘eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord’ and, as joyfully consecrated slaves, seek to produce holy fruit for our loving Master who has saved us.

☆ Mark 14:62 - And JESUS said, I am: and ye shall see the SON of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven...

#Baptism #EndTimes #LastDays #Rapture #JESUS♡