1 Peter 3:18-22
“And baptism, which this prefigured, now saves you—not as a removal of dirt from the body, but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,” vs. 21
As early Christians pored over the Hebrew scriptures they found many passages which helped them understand the new thing that was happening in Christ Jesus. The flood mentioned in Genesis was reinterpreted and even found its way into the baptismal liturgy. The connection was easy. Just as the waters of the flood had saved Noah and his family, so now the waters of baptism brought new life to followers of Jesus. It wasn’t so much that those baptismal waters had special cleansing properties, but they were the means by which believers were connected to the resurrection. Those who had been a part of fallen humanity were raised up in baptism and made members of the resurrected Body of Christ. Sadly, as the years have passed, baptism has degenerated into an empty ritual for many, a family custom that has lost most spiritual significance. Children are brought for baptism but often there is little continuing involvement with the community of faith and virtually no acknowledgment of the Risen Christ’s presence and power. In those instances, it takes the active prodding of the Holy Spirit to provoke faith…and sometimes that does happen. Lives begin to change and there is active repentance and the baptized begin to actually walk in the way of the cross. Resurrection escapes its Easter bondage and oozes into daily living, and God is glorified.
Thought for the Day: How do I experience the living Christ?