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What The Bible Teaches About Baptism

African American citizens attend a baptism

I just added an article about baptism to my repository of essays and Bible studies. It’s a pdf called What The Bible Teaches About Baptism.

Here’s an excerpt:

Why Should I Be Baptized?

“Why should I be baptized?” is a reasonable question, but I prefer the question asked by the Ethiopian eunuch: “Look, here is water. Why shouldn’t I be baptized?’” (Acts 8:36). Getting baptized is something that Christians do – it should be your default decision for the following reasons:

1) I Should Be Baptized To Obey Jesus

Jesus commanded his apostles to baptize people as they proclaimed the gospel (Matthew 28:18–20), and so we see that he expects new believers to be baptized as part of the process of becoming his disciples.

2) I Should Be Baptized To Identify With Jesus

Being baptized is a proclamation of our spiritual union with Christ. Colossians 2:12 says that Christians are “buried with [Jesus] in baptism” and that we are then “raised with him through our faith in the working of God, who raised [Jesus] from the dead.” Another way to approach this point is to recognize that Jesus, though without sin, was baptized and thereby identified with us, and we complete the cycle when we are baptized and likewise identify with him.

3) I Should Be Baptized To Proclaim My Devotion To Jesus

In 1 Peter 3:21, baptism is described as “the pledge of a clear conscience toward God” (that’s the NIV: some other translations phrase it as “an appeal to God for a good conscience”). Whichever is the better rendering in English, it is clear that baptism is an act of formally giving ourselves to God.

And so if you name Christ as your Lord and have not been baptized, then seize this opportunity and be baptized.

Read the rest of the pdf.

I really do wonder if our society’s legal structure is untenable. There comes a point when there are so many laws that people are forced to ignore or disobey that people must begin to disparage the law more generally. We are certainly there in some people’s minds – how long until contempt for the legal system undermines our ability to function as a society?

No One is Innocent

I broke the law yesterday and again today and I will probably break the law tomorrow. Don’t mistake me, I have done nothing wrong. I don’t even know what laws I have broken. Nevertheless, I am reasonably confident that I

(imported from Google+)

Indirect validation of the church planting assessment process.

Google Interview Questions

The famous Google interview questions? They don’t work. Here’s Laszlo Bock, senior vice president of people operations at Google: On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an

(imported from Google+)

How interesting. Whether this study is valid or not (I have not examined their methodology/data), I think the approach has merit.

The Homeric social network

The structure of the social network among characters in Homer’s Odyssey indicates the story is at least partially based on actual

(imported from Google+)

This brief article is full of surprising statistics, including an apparent contrast between how churchgoing LGBT adults view most denominations (most think of the church as a whole as unfriendly to them) vs how they view their personal congregational experience (only 6% feel their congregation is unfriendly to them). Am I reading that correctly? Because that’s a huge contrast.

More Than 4 in 10 LGBT Adults Identify as Christians

(imported from Google+)