Baptism has been near and dear to the hearts of we Bible students.
Could our treasured platform be possessed by other brands as well? The subject of baptism is showing up on stages throughout the religious world.
A YouTube blurb of well-known community church leader, Francis Chan, is quite pointed. It is his testimony that genuine hearts continue to seek God's salvationistic direction. Chan's comments of his not finding the sinner's prayer in the Word followed with discovery of the clear call to be baptized for the forgiveness sins surely speeds the heart rate of those in the Churches of Christ.
And then add what I recently read of Presbyterian Sharon Hersh's words, The very next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and yelled out, "Here he is, God's Passover Lamb! He forgives the sins of the world!.....this is why I came here baptizing with water, giving you a good bath and scrubbing sins from your life so you can get a fresh start with God"....
....Our pastor talked to our group of approximately forty adults about water and its connection to death, surrender, and resurrection. He had several of us read out loud from the Scriptures. One passage caught me by surprise. The apostle Paul was writing to the church at Rome: "That is what happened in baptism. When we went under the water, we left the old country of sin behind; when we came up out of the water, we entered into the new country of grace---a new life in a new land."
Other Christian groups are studying the baptism theme (in God's words) more than we can imagine.
Malcolm Smith is a charismatic who leads the well-known Unconditional Love Ministries. Consider his admonition in The Power of the Blood Covenant:
Many object to this, but I ask you to bear with me and see that baptism was unquestionably part of the salvation process in the New Testament.....baptism was given a place of great importance in the infant church. With everyone in the house filled with the Spirit and praising God, one would think that the subject of baptism could be left for another day; but obviously it could not wait, and Peter commanded that it take place at once...
.....I have taken this amount of time to show that very obviously baptism was not an afterthought to the early church, not something that took place once or twice a year, but was the rite of initiation into the new covenant.....The Message paraphrase of this verse puts it very plainly: going under water was a burial of your old life; coming up out of it was a resurrection, God raising you from the dead as he did Christ.
The subject of baptism may have been lost by some in the religious shuffle; apparently not totally.
Be encouraged. The Word continues to be sought from every corner of the globe. If ever a neighbor or a nation is to start life over, it will be when we bring the broken-hearted to Jesus and die with him in baptism that we might be raised to walk a new sort of life.