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Friday, January 14, 2011

Mighty to Save

"...Mighty to save."--Isaiah 63:1.  From the prophet Isaiah.  One of the "major" prophets, of course meaning he just wrote more.  Admittedly, this particular passage is not a prophecy concerning Christ such as in Isaiah 53 but the point is still the same.  God is "mighty" to save his people.  Before this Isaiah declares the righteousness of God which is one reason God is the only person that can save us.  The to save part is pretty obvious but God is mighty to save.  This passage does not only say he is able to save but it goes deeper than that, He is MIGHTY to save.  Well, if you will go with me, we can explore what it means that the Lord is MIGHTY to save.

Mighty to save.  Last night I talked about another three word phrase, "Lord, save me!" which is a phrase that holds so much power.  But now we see from this passage, although from a different book that God is not only able but MIGHTY to save.  This is another three word phrase that holds so much power.  It's hard for me to really wrap my mind around God's saving power.  When we repent, and are baptized for the remission of sins per Acts 2:38-39, of course all that is physically happening is we are getting wet.  But we chose to obey the gospel by being baptized as an act of obedience from our faith in God to save us from our sins.  There is way way more than just getting wet involved here.  As we go in and out of that water, there is a transformation taking place.  God is "physically" reaching down from heaven and cleansing us of our sins, renewing our minds and souls through the redeeming blood of Jesus Christ.  As far as the physically part, I have no scriptural proof of that but Scripture does tell us that is where we meet the blood of Jesus that can cleanse us from our sins, and when we come out of that water, it is like Christ who came out of that tomb very early on that Sunday morning, we come out of the "watery grave" a new creation.  Of course, we still have our physical body's but our soul and our spirit has been changed.  I can't really explain what happens in those moments when you are going in to the water and when you come out.  But I can tell you this, salvation is yours after you have done this and you are now a recipient of God's grace through faith.  The salvation of our souls is something with eternal consequences.  God is MIGHTY to save.  His power to save our souls is beyond anything anyone could ever imagine.  God is more than just able to save, He is MIGHTY to save.

But of course the buck does not stop at baptism.  Baptism is only the beginning.  The Great Commission in Matthew 28 tells us that we must make disciples by baptizing and teaching them to obey.  Baptizing, according to this passage is of course absolutely essential to making disciples but so is teaching.  And with teaching, the implication is there must be learning taking place. Our obedience to the gospel saved us from our sins, but we must continue to learn what it means to follow God.  Following God more often than not will involve lifestyle changes, attitude changes, and even changes in the people we hang out with and the environments we put ourselves in.  These changes won't happen overnight.  I have been a Christian for 11 years and I am still finding areas in my life that need to change in order to please God.  So, if you have not obeyed the gospel by being baptized for the remission of your sins and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit per Acts 2:28-39, remember the Lord is not only able but MIGHTY to save you but we must make the choice.  But whether you have or have not obeyed the gospel, I encourage you to examine your life this morning and see if there are any areas that you need to change in your life in order to please God, whether its obeying the gospel or taking steps towards becoming a better Christian, examine yourself.  If you are a Christian, one thing you can do is go out and teach a friend or a family member as this pleases God. And may we always remember, the Lord is MIGHTY TO SAVE. Pray about it, DO something about it, Love y'all, God bless!!

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