kountzeheath

Have you ever considered the words of Ezekiel in Ezekiel 18:4, which teach, “The soul that sins must die.”  The reason a sinner must die is because of God’s holy nature, He and sin cannot co-exist, 1 John 1:5.  And since all men have sinned, Romans 3:23.  In sin, we live in a condition separate from God (Isaiah 59:1-2), as aliens with no hope, (Ephesians 2:12).  Yet fortunately for us, God is love, 1 John 4:19.  And in love He sent His Son to die for the world, John 3:16.  And in return, God now proclaims to the world that we must “Believe in Him….he that doeth truth cometh to the light,” John 3:16, 21. 

Therefore, mankind was lost in sin and had no hopes of appeasing God on on own.  So, Jesus came and died as the Lamb of God to take away the sins of the world, John1:29.  And, as we noted above, while Jesus was laboring on earth, He told man that we must believe in something and do something in order to come to the light.  As we continue to study the words of Jesus, we learn in John 3 that in order for once to come to the light one must be born again, 3:3 and 3:7.  Actually, 3:7 uses the word “must,” to show it is absolutely imperative for one to be born again in order to be saved.  Then as the New Testament continues to unfold, we learn in Matthew 16:18 that Jesus was going to build His church.  That He died, buried and arose, 1 Corinthians 15:1-4.  And before He ascended into heaven, He commissioned His apostles to go into the entire world, preaching the gospel, and baptizing believers.  As Jesus said, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; he that believeth not shall be damned,” Mark 16:16. 

Therefore, Jesus gave His commission and ascended up to the Father, Marks 16:19; Acts 1:9.  After His ascension, His apostles then continued Christ’s ministry on earth, Acts 2.  By helping to establish the church, Acts 2:47, the realm of the saved, Acts 2:40, 47, which Jesus purchased with His own blood, Acts 20:28. 

Yet, what did they do in order to enter the church, the realm of the saved?  Paul said they were baptized, 1 Corinthians 12:13.  And when we read the book of Acts that is exactly what people did in order to be saved and added to the church.  Notice in Acts 2, the crowd heard a gospel message (Acts 2:37; Romans 10:14.)  They believed and confessed that Jesus was the Christ (Acts 8:37; Mark 16:15-16).  They repented of their sins (Acts 2:38).  And were baptized for the remission of their sins (Acts 2:38.)  Or as Paul said, baptism was for the washing away of sins (Acts 22:16).

To conclude, as Peter was wrapping up his sermon in Acts 2.  He told the crowd to “Save yourselves,” 2:40.  And those who wanted to be saved from their sins and crimes against God “Gladly received his word were baptized,” 2:41.  Are you ready?

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