BAPTIZED INTO GOD’S FAMILY
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me
in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore,
and teach all nations, baptizing them
in1519 the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you:
and, lo, I am with you always,
even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Matthew 28:19-20 (KJV)
1519 εἰς (ӗis) – primary preposition: to or into (indicating the point reached or entered) of place, time, or (fig.) purpose (result, etc.).
Baptism is an outward expression of something that has already happened inwardly. As soon as we surrender our lives to the Lord Jesus, we are adopted into God’s forever family. When someone is baptized, the person officiating usually says something like, “I baptize you, my brother (sister), in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” Let’s look at that phrase “in the name of”. This can and does mean “on behalf of.” Which is how I had often thought of it. However, that little preposition “in” can mean “into.” We are baptized into the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We become one with the God-head as Jesus prayed in John 17:21-13. If this happens the moment we are converted, the moment we surrender our lives to the Lord, then what is baptism? Baptism does not save us. It is an evidence that we have been saved. When a friend of mine adopted children, they lived in her home, began calling her “Mommy,” and she loved them as her own. They were adopted into her family as far as they and she were concerned. Months later, the official papers were signed in court, and the adoption was “finalized.” However, there was a step in the process where she swore under oath before witnesses to be their mother in every sense of the word. This was an outward demonstration of the commitment she had already made to the children and had already made official on the documents. We are adopted into God’s family, and our baptism is the announcement to the world that this adoption has transpired. My friend provides for all the needs of her adopted children, and they are her legal heirs. When we are baptized into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we are acknowledging not only our obligation to obey God but our trust that He will now provide for all our needs, and as Paul wrote in Romans 8:17, we are joint-heirs with Jesus. Are we living like children of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the all-powerful God? Do we stand on the truth that we have been welcomed into sharing His name? Are we remembering all the things we have in Him (see Ephesians 1)?
Father, thank you for the privilege of addressing You this way, the joy of being Your child. Help us to live each day with an awareness of carrying Your name. Help us to enjoy the benefits of being in Your forever family and be careful never to bring shame to the name we bear—Christian.