Sermon on March 8 by Pastor Roland Eskinazi
Scripture: Romans 10:9,10
The question ‘what is baptism’ hinges on a more important one. ‘What is a true Christian?’
A true follower of Jesus is:
1. PERSONALLY TRUSTING IN JESUS ALONE! (v9)
The confession ‘Jesus is Lord’ is external (with your mouth) and internal (in your heart)
- Do you know Jesus, not just about Jesus?
All religion does is make us strive to live a way of life, without discovering the way to life.
‘He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him. Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in name, He gave the right to become children of God’ (John 1:11)
In Jesus, God comes to us, to do all we cannot do to come to Him.
- Do you treasure Jesus for all Jesus is?
All of life involves faith – and faith in Jesus is activity based on assurance.
We rest on God’s promise of eternal life: it is not simply about ‘a time and place’ but being one with Jesus ‘right now’.
Don’t follow Jesus to become a follower; put your faith in His work and you will love to follow.
2. RADICALLY LIVING FOR JESUS ALONE! (v10-13)
- Be real – your new life is in the midst of the old
When Jesus our Prince marries the pauper (us), we have royal status but will not always feel royal.
‘I find this law at work. Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me’ (Romans 7:21)
Faith and baptism does not mean we don’t collect dirt in our hearts every day.
Are you a follower? Are you fighting sin, or making excuses, are you confessing Jesus by pursuing a pure heart?
- Be bold – your new King is always a step ahead
Following Jesus makes you radical in confession and expectation.
There was nothing random about Saul seeing Jesus and being transformed. God is always a step ahead.
‘He placed real Christians around me, all of my friends in fact. I started really studying the Bible, trying to make space for God, asking Him to reveal himself to me. It took me a while to understand that not alone, but through Christ who strengthens me, I could do all things. And I finally understood grace’ (Susana)
Baptism is for those who are transformed by grace. Whether you are young or old, Belgian, Kurd, Romanian, African, American or Asian, whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION
- How would you define a Christian in your own words? Why would baptizing anyone, who is merely ‘religious’, be an error?
- Define ‘sin’. Why is this a barrier to a living relationship with God? Define ‘faith’, and why true faith matters.
- What is the gospel (good news) in your own words? How would you explain it to your colleague at work, who at least thinks he is better than others, or is someone who says: ‘I try to do to others what I would like them do to me. Isn’t that enough?
- Have you trusted in Jesus and are not yet baptized? Do an honest search of the New Testament and prayerfully reflect and act.
Photo credit FreeImages.com/Martyn E. Jones