January 21, 2024
Rev. Dr. Jan Remer-Osborn
"Why Bother with Baptism?"
Sacraments have gone by the wayside in many newly established churches of today. I admit I envy many for their large membership, and yes, for their contemporary music, though I love traditional as well. But that’s where it stops. I would not trade places.
The thing is, for me, being a Christian is inextricably intertwined with baptism and Holy Communion. The greatest joy I have as a pastor is performing the sacrament of baptism.
Baptism calls forth the pouring out of the Holy Spirit on those whom God has chosen. Through this, “God works in us the power of forgiveness, the renewal of the Spirit, and the knowledge of the call to be God’s people always.” (UCC Book of Worship)
Who would want to miss this coming of the Holy Spirit and the subsequent blessings?
We remember and celebrate today, that Jesus, himself, was baptized, cleansed and visited by the Holy Spirit prior to his ministry. He was making himself ready and committed then to a most difficult discipleship to God. Jesus, as our example, is showing how important this step is.
God is a place where we can get a fresh start. So today, as we recall our baptism or think about becoming baptized, let us begin anew in our faith, opening our lives fully to God in our repentance and in our actions towards others.