A one off kid’s slot for the baptism of one of the covenantal kids!
This morning we’re going to baptise Flora and so I thought it would be helpful to understand what we’re going to do.
At the end of his life Jesus told his followers that they should encourage others to become his followers and encourage them to be baptised [Matthew 28]. Jesus did that because baptism helps us understand what he did for us on the cross and the good things that come from following him. It’s a symbol or an illustration that God has given us. But it doesn’t actually do anything to her now. Flora’s not going to be changed by her baptism. It won’t make her a Christian. Because Flora’s very little she can’t say these things for herself but as her parents we’re praying that one day she will.
There are four things that we’re hoping that she’ll say.
1. We’re praying that she’ll say ‘I’m with Jesus’
Baptism shows our new relationship to Jesus. When someone becomes a Christian they become someone who loves and follows Jesus. It’s like deciding to follow a football team. So here’s a shirt for Flora that shows that she has become a follower of a particular team. In Flora’s baptism we’re praying that she’ll grow up and want to identify with or belong to Jesus.
2. We’re praying that she’ll say ‘I’m clean from sin’
Baptism shows the way that Jesus has dealt with sin. Sin means not letting God tell us how to live. Sins are the naughty things that we then do. When Jesus died on the cross he washed away all the wrong things that we’d done so that we could be clean. It’s like playing football and getting dirty but then washing it all away in a strong shower. In Flora’s baptism we’re praying that she’ll grow up and decide to trust Jesus’ death to wash her clean from sin.
3. We’re praying that she’ll say ‘I’m a new person’
Baptism shows that we can become new people. When someone becomes a Christian they begin a new life. It’s a new life that means that they want to follow Jesus. It’s possible because God’s Spirit has changed them inside. When we start supporting a football club it’s a big day because we’ll start to do lots of new things. We’ll look in the paper for the scores and we might get up early on a Sunday to watch Match of the Day. In Flora’s baptism we’re praying that she’ll grow up and have this new life that Jesus offers. It’s a new life that starts when we become a Christian and continues into heaven.
4. We’re praying that she’ll say ‘I’m in the church’
Baptism shows that we’ve been joined to another group of people who also love and follow Jesus. When someone becomes a Christian they join God’s church and therefore they’ll want to meet up with others like them. When we start following a football team we become a supporter and we ought to show that by turning up so that we can cheer the side on. It means when we met other supporters even if we’ve never met them before we’ve got something important to us in common. In Flora’s baptism we’re praying that she’ll grow up and want to be part of the church so that she can meet up with lots of other people who follow Jesus.