Repentance simply means “to return.” To return to God, to turn back to God’s ways. This was the simple message of John the Baptizer, who probably came from the Essenes and took their particular understanding of the mikveh, the ritual cleansing bath practiced by many Jewish people, and used it as a ritual of repentance.
But instead of separating himself on the shores of the Dead Sea with the other Essenes, John went to where the people had gathered. The Jordan was where people bathed, washed their clothes and dishes. And there, in that muddy and dirty water of everyday muck, John declared God was doing something new, and that God simply desired the people to turn back to God and God’s ways, to turn from their selfishness. Jesus came, and was baptized along with them, and God was well pleased.
Paul finds a group of believers in Ephesus who have been baptized with John’s baptism, but not with that of Christ. He explains that John’s points to the One who came after him, and they are baptized in the name of Jesus.
John the Baptizer baptizes people in the Jordan River, calling them to repent. He preaches that One is coming after him who will baptize in the Holy Spirit.
Prayer of Brokenness
Creator God, we confess our sins to You. We confess that we have failed to live into Your commandments. We have failed to follow Your teachings and ordinances in Scripture. We have failed to love our neighbor as ourselves.
As we come together to remember our baptism and renew our baptismal vows, we renew our commitment to You. We repent of our sins. We ask for Your forgiveness. We pray that we might do better in this new year to live into Your commandments, to follow the teachings of Christ, and to listen to the Holy Spirit’s guidance.
We pray all things in You, God our Creator, Christ our Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit who sustains us now and forever. Amen.
Help us staying connected through our prayer….
Please email Jennifer with any of your Prayer Requests, including joys & concerns. Thank you!
Friends, on Sunday we will celebrate the “Baptism of the Lord Sunday” and part our worship celebration will be our Renewal of Baptismal Covenant. Please have ready a bowl or something similar that you can poured water in. So, that mean you need pitcher too or something similar to pour out the water in the basin, or bowl or ….
Please follow Pastor Luis and together will be pouring the water…