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Why Were Believers Baptized Immediately in the Bible?

"Believers must have been baptized immediately in the Bible to accomplish something urgent. What is the purpose of baptism that required believers to be baptized at once?"

Articles
Sunday, April 21 2019

Many people speak of God as just another man rather than the eternal Being and Creator of the universe. By definition, God is beyond the universe as the Creator of the heavens and the earth. The cause of the universe must be transcendent of everything and thus metaphysical and supernatural. This uniqueness separating God from all creation and existence is God’s holiness.

            His holy nature is pure, right, loving, and just. Isaiah’s rhapsody reflected that God shows Himself holy in righteousness (Isa 5:16). Because of God’s holiness, the Psalmist called for exaltation and worship of God (Ps 99:9; cf. 1 Chr 16:29). According to the Song of Moses, God’s majesty displays in His holiness (Exod 15:11).

            God has called all believers to “be holy for I am holy” (1 Pet 1:16; cf. Lev 11:44–45; 19:2). According to 1 Peter 1:14–16, God is the standard of holiness in righteousness. To live holy lives is to live in the likeness of God. Peter urged Christians not to conform to passions of lust but Christians must become holy in all conduct and behavior. This is why obedience to God is essential. Peter further revealed that Christ ransomed Christians by His blood as He is without spot or blemish (1 Pet 1:18–19). Despite sins, everyone can pursue a holy and righteous life with God through Jesus Christ.

            Hannah professed in her prayer, “There is none holy like the Lord: for there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God” (1 Sam 2:2). God is totally set apart from all evil. The Hebrew for holy is godesh meaning “apartness” or “sacred.” The root idea of holiness is separation. That separation of holiness is a divine quality of God’s righteous nature (Isa 5:16). Holiness is godliness.

            Holiness is one of the greatest moral attributes of God by which believers commune with God. Unlike divine attributes that are maximal as God such as being almighty and all-knowing, humanity can share in God’s holiness and must to be saved (Heb 12:10). Holiness is both transcendent in God and yet morally applicable for humanity made in His image.

            As one scholar noted, God’s holiness is comparable to the rooms of the tabernacle. The first room of the tabernacle is the “holy place” dedicated for priests to serve God daily. However, the veil separated the priests from the most holy place (Exod 26:33). The most holy place is separated from evil and sin as the Holy of Holies that contained God’s commandments within the Ark of the Covenant. God’s separation from sin demonstrates His complete righteousness. David expressed, “And who shall stand in His holy place?” (Ps 24:3).

            The writer of Hebrews revealed, “For the holiness without which no one will see the Lord” (12:14b). The holy nature of God demands a people who are holy, consecrated, pure, and set apart from the defiling acts of the world (1 Pet 2:5, 9; cf. Exod 19:4–6; Josh 24:19–20).

            Thank God that He has made the faithful holy, because people cannot make themselves holy. Paul revealed, “He has now reconciled in His body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before Him,” (Col 1:22). Paul also declared, “Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God” (2 Cor 7:1).

Posted by: Scott J Shifferd AT 12:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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