multicultural

Baptism Sunday

What is Baptism

(Matthew 28:18-20 NASB) And Jesus came up and spoke to them saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.

Baptism is immersion in water.

(Acts 8:38-39 NASB) And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; and the eunuch no longer saw him, but went on his way rejoicing.

What does baptism signify?

Baptism signifies that a change has occurred.

(Acts 8:36-38 NASB) As they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?” And Philip asia, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him.

What does baptism symbolize?

Baptism symbolizes being washed in His blood.

(Romans 6:3-5) Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we, too, may live a new life. For if we have been united with Him in a death like His we will certainly also be united with Him in a resurrection like His.

(1 Peter 3:21) And this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also – not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God. It save you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Who can be baptized?

Disciples or Followers of Jesus Christ.

(Matthew 28:19) Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…”

Why should you be baptized?

Jesus was baptized.

See Matthew 3, Mark 1 and Luke 3

Jesus commanded it.

(Matthew 28:19) Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them…”

It’s your next step.

Summer at Celebration // Taking Your Next Steps

Taking Your Next Steps

Philippians 3:13-14 NASB  “forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

The Why

If you don’t… 

You’ll never reach your destination.

You’ll get left behind.

You’ll get run over.

2 Corinthians 10:3-4 NASB  “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses.

Ephesians 6:12 NASB  “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

1 Peter 5:8 NASB  “Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”

James 2:15-17 NASB  “If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.”

The How

Identify the next step.

Matthew 7:7 NASB  “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”

Isaiah 30:21 NASB  “Your ears will hear a word behind you, ‘This is the way, walk in it,’ whenever you turn to the right or to the left.”

Take it!

James 2:17 NASB “Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.”

Deuteronomy 1:6 NASB  “The Lord our God spoke to us at Horeb, saying, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain.’”

Keep moving forward!

Matthew 14:22-33 

Summer at Celebration // The Race of Faith: God Wants You To Win

(Hebrews 12:1-3 NLT) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne. Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up.

Hindrances

  1. Busyness
  2. Relationships
  3. Career
  4. Money
  5. Comfort

(Galatians 5:7 ESV) You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?

(I Corinthians 9:24) Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

It’s not the intensity but the sincerity in Jesus, the object of our faith that keeps us in the race. 

God Wants You to Win

Supplying you. 

(Hebrews 12:2 CSB) keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith. For the joy that lay before him, he endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Sustaining you.  

(Psalm 54:4) Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.

(Hebrews 12:3) Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Guiding you. 

(Psalm 119:105) Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

(Psalm 48:9,14) Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love. For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.

Summer at Celebration // The Race of Faith Pt. 1

The Race of Faith

(Hebrews 12:1-3 AMP) Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who by faith have testified to the truth of God’s absolute faithfulness], stripping off every unnecessary weight and the sin which so easily and cleverly entangles us, let us run with endurance and active persistence the race that is set before us, [looking away from all that will distract us and] focusing our eyes on Jesus, who is the Author and Perfecter of faith [the first incentive for our belief and the One who brings our faith to maturity], who for the joy [of accomplishing the goal] set before Him endured the cross, disregarding the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God [revealing His deity, His authority, and the completion of His work].

Hindrances

  • Busyness
  • Relationships
  • Career
  • Money
  • Comfort

(Galatians 5:7 ESV) You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?

(I Corinthians 9:24) Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

It’s not the intensity but the sincerity in Jesus, the object of our faith that keeps us in the race. 

The Race Isn’t Easy

It builds dependency. 

 (II Corinthians 11:23-27; 12:10) I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

It cultivates intimacy.  

(I Peter 1:6-7) In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

It builds character. 

(James 1:2-5) Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

Summer at Celebration // Deny Yourself Pt. 2

(Luke 9:23-26) Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self? Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.

What is a disciple?

Worships him exclusively.

(John 14:6) Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

(Luke 4:8) Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'"

Serves him sacrificially.

(Philippians 3:8 NLT) Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ

Witnesses for him unashamedly.

(Luke 9:26) Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.

Take up your cross daily.

Dying to self.

(Galatians 2:20 AMP) I have been crucified with Christ [that is, in Him I have shared His crucifixion]; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body I live by faith [by adhering to, relying on, and completely trusting] in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

Absolute surrender. 

(Romans 12:1 AMP) Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies [dedicating all of yourselves, set apart] as a living sacrifice, holy and well-pleasing to God, which is your rational (logical, intelligent) act of worship.

Radical obedience. 

(Luke 9:57-62) As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.

Lost // Part 3

(Luke 19:10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." (Reference verse: Philippians 2:6-8) 

The Parable of the Lost Son 

(Luke 15:11 – 30 CSB) He also said: “A man had two sons. The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of the estate I have coming to me.’ So he distributed the assets to them. Not many days later, the younger son gathered together all he had and traveled to a distant country, where he squandered his estate in foolish living. After he had spent everything, a severe famine struck that country, and he had nothing. Then he went to work for one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. He longed to eat his fill from the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one would give him anything. When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired workers have more than enough food, and here I am dying of hunger! I’ll get up, go to my father, and say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight. I’m no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired workers.”’ So he got up and went to his father. But while the son was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion. He ran, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him. The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight. I’m no longer worthy to be called your son.’ “But the father told his servants, ‘Quick! Bring out the best robe and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Then bring the fattened calf and slaughter it, and let’s celebrate with a feast, because this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!’ So they began to celebrate. “Now his older son was in the field; as he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he summoned one of the servants, questioning what these things meant. ‘Your brother is here,’ he told him, ‘and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’ “Then he became angry and didn’t want to go in. So his father came out and pleaded with him. But he replied to his father, ‘Look, I have been slaving many years for you, and I have never disobeyed your orders, yet you never gave me a goat so that I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your assets with prostitutes, you slaughtered the fattened calf for him.’ “‘Son,’ he said to him, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”

What Can I Do?

Take the initiative.  

(Romans 5:8 AMP) But God clearly shows and proves His own love for us, by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

(1 John 4:19) We love because he first loved us.

Be relational. 

(Luke 7:34) The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, 'Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.'

(Luke 15:1-2) Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”

Invest in eternity.

(Matthew 6:19-21) “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

(Philippians 3:8) What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ.

Lost // Part 2

Mission statement: Our mission is to love unconditionally, serve sacrificially, and reach “who-so-ever” in order to reach people far from God with the life-giving message of Jesus Christ that they might experience a life of purpose and fulfillment that God always intended for them.

(Luke 19:10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." (Reference verse: Philippians 2:6-8) 

The Parable of the Lost Coin

(Luke 15:8-10 CSB) “Or what woman who has ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? When she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found the silver coin I lost!’ I tell you, in the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents.”

(Mark 2:17 NLT) When Jesus heard this, he told them, "Healthy people don't need a doctor--sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners."

A deep commitment to the Gospel, leads to a deep commitment to reaching whosoever. 

(Matthew 13:44) “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.

What Can I Do?

Treasure people.  

(Luke 10:27) He answered, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

(John 13:34-35 NLT) So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Be available. 

(Isaiah 6:8) Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"

(I Corinthians 15:9—10) For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.

Live generously.

(Luke 6:38) Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

(Matthew 6:19-21) “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Lost // Part 1

Mission statement: Our mission is to love unconditionally, serve sacrificially, and reach “who-so-ever” in order to reach people far from God with the life-giving message of Jesus Christ that they might experience a life of purpose and fulfillment that God always intended for them.

(Luke 19:10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." (Reference verse: Philippians 2:6-8) 

The Parable of the Lost Sheep  

(Luke 15:1-7 CSB) All the tax collectors and sinners were approaching to listen to him. And the Pharisees and scribes were complaining, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So he told them this parable: “What man among you, who has a hundred sheep and loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open field and go after the lost one until he finds it? When he has found it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders, and coming home, he calls his friends and neighbors together, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found my lost sheep!’ I tell you, in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who don’t need repentance.

(I Timothy 1:15) Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners--of whom I am the worst.

Lost people are important to God, therefore they should be important to his church.

(Luke 10:18-20) He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

What Can I Do?

Accept the responsibility.

(Matthew 28:18-20) Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Take action. 

(Acts 1:8) But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Reference Verse: Romans 10:13-15)

Pray. 

(I Timothy 2:1-2 NLT) I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity.

Give.

(II Corinthians 8:1-4) And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. (Reference Verse: John 3:16)