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Baptism of Gemma Lynn Bloch

March 30, 2014

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Baptism3

Fourth Sunday in Lent                                                     Trinity Lutheran Church

30 March 2014                                                                   Murdock, NE

 

+ Jesu Juva +

 

Matthew 28:19

Baptism of Gemma Lynn Bloch

 

Well, Jesus commands it.  He is speaking to you.  You heard what the crucified but risen Jesus stated, didn’t you?  “Make disciples of all nations by baptizing and teaching.”  The All-Authority-In-Heaven-And-On-Earth-That-Has-Been-Given-To Jesus categorically mandates: “Baptize in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

 

What All-Authority-In-Heaven-And-On-Earth Jesus commands is for your good.  For little Gemma Lynn’s good.  Salvationly good, that is!

 

After all, Jesus died for sinners.  He achieved and won the forgiveness of sins for “all nations” in His Good Friday dying.  He did that by bearing all sin in His Body on the cross and answering for it with His divine cruciform death.  The Lord Jesus didn’t exclude Gemma Lynn from His “It is finished,” declaration before He died.

 

Now the Lord Jesus sees to it that His Good Friday forgiveness of sins gets delivered to the sinners for which He died.  Including little Gemma Lynn.

 

Jesus died for her.  And today in Holy Baptism Jesus delivered His Good Friday forgiveness to her with the Triune Name.  Brothers and sisters, I beg you to learn, believe and rejoice in the absolute enormity of the God’s giving – GOD’S GIVING – TO GEMMA LYNN AND TO YOU HIS SINNERS!  What do I mean?  Listen.  Here’s what I’m talking about.  Hold on tight.  Fasten your seat belts.  Hold on to your hats.  Here goes.

 

To be baptized in God’s Name is to be baptized by God Himself!

 

Holy Baptism is God’s giving of Himself to sinners through His Name!

 

The Triune God is there with His Name in Holy Baptism giving Himself, all that He is, and all that He has – NAMELY, SALVATION for sinners.

 

God’s Triune Name is the only name by which sinners are saved – that is to say – forgiven.

 

Acts 2:38 flat out promises that when you’re baptized your sins are forgiven and you’re given the gift of the Holy Spirit – that that promise of forgiveness and the Holy Spirit is “for you and for your children and for all.” 

 

Acts 22:16 declares that when you’re baptized your sins are “washed away.”

 

When Jesus washes away or forgives your sins – YOU ARE SAVED!  FORGIVENESS OF SINS = SALVATION!

 

And that’s why the New Testament emphatically preaches and promises that Baptism – SAVES SINNERS.

 

Listen.

 

Titus 3:5.  “God saved us [sinners] through the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.”

 

1 Peter 3:21.  “Baptism … now SAVES you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, [Baptism … now saves you] through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

 

1 Corinthians 6:11.  “But you were washed.”  The washing’s Holy Baptism.  And what happened in that washing?  St. Paul says:  “You were washed, you were sanctified [that’s holied], you were justified [made right with God] – justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

 

And then there’s the clincher promise from Jesus Himself.  Mark 16:16.  “Whoever believes and is baptized will be SAVED.”

 

SAVED!  That’s the Lord’s promise.  He keeps His promises.  He gives what He promises.  Just like He did with the man born blind – making mud with His spit – pressing it on his eyes – and then command him to wash in Siloam’s pool.  The man did what Jesus said and he could see for the first time in his life.  Later he could see even more — not just with his eyes but with his heart – namely that Jesus is the Son of Man Savior of sinners including him!

 

So, if you’re not baptized, don’t you think it’s time?  Don’t exclude yourself the Lord’s promises.  Too much at stake – wouldn’t you say?  I sure would.  Salvation is at stake!  And that’s precisely how Jesus put it to Nicodemus in John 3 when they had that nocturnal conversation about how a sinner is given salvation.  Jesus put it as bluntly as He could.  “Listen up Nicodemus!  Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God!” 

 

Brothers and sisters, Holy Baptism is a magnificent treasure and gift!  With the Triune Name Holy Baptism brings and gives to sinners victory over death and the devil, forgiveness of sin, God’s grace, the entire merit of Christ’s cross and blood, and the Holy Spirit with all His gifts.  All this is the Lord’s giving FOR YOU His sinners.  And for little Gemma Lynn too!

 

“Make disciples of all nations” All-Authority-In-Heaven-And-On-Earth Jesus mandates.  How are disciples made?  By:  “baptizing them in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

 

Holy Baptism is for sinners.  Sinners for whom Lord Jesus died.  Gemma Lynn has been branded, tattooed, that is to say, she has been given the most holy divine name in her baptism.  And where the Triune God puts His Name there is life and salvation.

 

Jesus promises it.  And He gives it!

 

Happy Baptism Day Gemma Lynn!

 

Happy living in your Baptisms all of the rest of you who are baptized too!

 

In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen!

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