Sermon:  Make the Most of your Baptism


Summary:  While baptism itself is a one-time act, it is a watershed moment where your life is changed by freedom from sin and service to God who redeemed and purchased us.  In order to keep from being entangled again, we need to spend time in the word in self evaluation, guard your heart, and avoid secret sin which enslaves.


Text:  Various


Scripture Reading:  .Gal 3:26-28



1.  Don't you love seeing the children among us?

a.     Love it when say hi to a baby, smile with jerky movements

b.     Nothing better than welcoming a baby into the world

2.  The same when it comes to welcoming a new child of God into the world

a.     Scripture reading reminds us that we need to be born again

b.     To be born again means to be born of water and Spirit

c.     Reminds us of Acts 2:38 - Repent and be baptized, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

3.  Sermon - Make the most of your baptism

a.     Take some time to look at the meaning of baptism

b.     Baptism is God's command to us in how we receive his solution to our problem with sin

c.     Sermon plan - Look at how Bible describes sin as a problem and how it is connected to baptism


I. Sin as a legal problem

A. Sin as a legal problem most common way to understand sin

1. 1 Jn 3:4 - Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness

2. When you sin, you break the law, and there is a penalty for it

B. (Col 2:11-14)

1. That sin that held you in bondage is put off. 

2. When?  V.12 - baptism

a. Buried and raised up with him in baptism

b. Through faith in God's work - who raised him from death

i This is why we don't baptize babies

ii Has to be done in faith

c. He forgave all of our sins

3. Cancelled the charge of our legal indebtedness

a. It stood against us

b. It condemned us.  Why? Because we cannot pay it

c. He nailed it to the cross - He paid the debt on the cross

C. ILL:  Reminds me of when William was little – always love the library

1. Had a $50 fine, combination of books and movies

2. He was only 7-8 yrs old, dawned on him – he can’t pay!

a. I couldn’t pay either, didn’t have $50 on me

b. Walked out, he nearly in tears

c. In his mind, Library is not inaccessible

d. Might as well  50 million

3. Story had happy ending – Mom & Dad paid the fine

4. That is what Jesus did for us

a. But not $50 from the bank

b. He paid the fine with his own blood on the cross

c. And now we have access to God

D. This is what happens when we are buried with him in baptism

1. He forgives all of our debt

2. We get a clean start


II. Sin as a Twisting of the Mind

A. We don't think of this one as often - how does breaking a law twist your mind?

1. Those who have lived a lawless life, breaking rules might be able identify with this more

2. When you start down that road, you become affected to core of your being

B. (1 Pet 3:18-21) Baptism passage mentions it in passing

1. Baptism now saves you

a. Does not say baptism does NOT save you

b. But it does explain how and why?

2. It is not the water

a. Is not holy water, is not like magical powers, not just ritual

b. Need to remember God forgives by virtue of the cross and resurrection

c. Faith, repentance, confession, baptism by itself does not do it

d. God applies it to us when we accept in faith & obedience

3. It is the "appeal to God for a clean conscience"

a. e*perwvthma - verb form: to ask a question, or for something,  noun form: question, request, appeal. Later usage:pledge

b. "Appeal" seems better in light of context as well

4. Two passages sheds light on this idea of an impure conscience

a. (Eph 4:17-19) - Describes those outside of Christ

i How does it describe their thinking?  Futile

ii What about their understanding?  Darkened

iii What about their hearts?  Hard

iv Sin affects your mind

b. (Heb 9:13-14) Only way reformation of the mind is Christ

i Rituals in and of themselves won't do it

ii Only Christ can do it

iii Offered his blood to "cleanse our conscience"

c. This is why it says baptism saves you, not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a clean conscience through the resurrection of Christ

i We are raised up with him to a new life

ii When we do this, he cleanses that defilement

C. ILL:  Reminds me of doing laundry for first time in college

1. Not supposes to do whites with colors – color bleed, whites dingy

2. Tried to wash whites all by self – but STILL dingy

3. Then – someone introduced me to bleach!

a. Whites like new again!

b. Without the bleach, whites never been clean again

4. That is the way is with baptism

a. Need to be baptized, but it is not about the water by itself

i By itself, the water will not wash away sins

ii If so, you could wash away sins in the bathtub

iii The water is not magic, not have power in itself

b.  Blood of Jesus is the bleach that cleanses us from sin

c. When baptized in faith and obedience, he cleanses our conscience

D. When baptized, God begins to work in our hearts and minds

1. He starts to reform and transform the mind twisted by sin

2. Brings us to our final point. . .


III. Sin as a Power

A. Sin is more than just a legal problem it is a power

B. (Rom 6:1-7) Baptism passage that talks about our sin

1. Old self is gone, become a new person

2. No longer slaves to sin

3. Rom 7 describes what this power of bondage looks like

a. (7:11) - Sin hijacked the commandment (like rule - no cookies from cookie jar until after dinner)

b. (7:14-20) - Sin lives in me, causes me to do what I do not want to do - it is an overwhelming power living in me

4. When sin comes into your life, it is an overwhelming power

a. Things you see – can’t unsee

b. Things you hear – can’t unheard

c. Things you do – can’t undo

d. Things you think – can’t unthink – they in your mind

C. ILL:  Reminds me of those old CRT and tube TV’s

1. Have you ever noticed how can’t see image burned into it?

2. Came up with screen savers to prevent it

3. That is what sin does – It burns into your mind, heart

a. That sins comes to “live” in you, as the passage said

b. Nothing you can do on your own will get rid of it

4. But what happens when baptized into Christ?

a. John 8:34 - Everyone who sins is a slave to sin…but if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed (truly free)

b. Free in every way

i Legally free – He paid your debt

ii Free from its bondage over you

c. Have ability for reformation of the heart: - - -

D.  (Rom 6:11-14) If baptized, this is what life should look like

1. You have died to sin - Do not let sin reign in you

a. Outside of Christ, it was impossible

b. Since you have been baptized into Christ, you can fight it

2. How do you do this? - Not just try to stop, but replace it (v.13)

a. Not offer self to sin, but offer self to God

b. Replace sinful behavior with godly behavior



1.  Title of Sermon - Make Most of Your Baptism

2.  Don’t go back into bondage!

3.  If baptized - Here are some suggestions

a.     Spend time with Bible lists & Pray (Colossians 3 - note the lists)

b.     Guard your Heart with All Diligence (Prov 4:23)

                                                    i.     Avoid sin, situations that tempt you

                                                   ii.     Replace it with doing godly things, as in Colossians 3

c.     Avoid Secret Sin (James 5:16) Confess sins to each other and pray for one another that you may be healed

                                                    i.     If you have allowed sin to take hold of heart, secrecy gives it inexhaustible power

                                                   ii.     ILL: Proverb - "Guarding your heart does not mean guarding your secrets, it is just the opposite"

                                                 iii.     Talk to me, elders, or someone you can confess and be accountable to

d.     Make the most of your baptism - You are a new person

4.  Some of you may still need to be baptized (Inv)