Harmony Christian Church
Harmony Christian Church
Week 4 - Dealing with Feeling Exposed - Why Baptism
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This week we are talking about baptism and why we need it – if you are interested in getting baptized, you can message us on Facebook or email [email protected] and we will help you take that step! When you give at Harmony, you are investing in life change and are Advancing the Kingdom!  GIVE TODAY, text any amount to (859) 459-0316  to get started (or give online @ my.harmonychurch.cc/give .
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OPENING ILLUSTRATION: So, this happens pretty regularly in my house.  I do something dumb, like say, embarrass my poor sweet wife because I’m trying to be funny as an extrovert – I know you’d never believe this, but I like people to like me.  I do something embarrassing and she in a gentle kind way says, “Hey, when you did xy&z, I really didn’t like it, I hate being put on the spot like that…”
And do you know what I want to do?
That’s right, I apologize like a good husband.  I tell her “What I’m hearing is that when I overstep the boundaries of what you are comfortable with in social situations it causes embarrassment and makes it feel like I don’t love you.  I’m very sorry for that and I will never do it again…”
Ha, I wish that’s what I say…
You know what I say, I say this…… [be quiet with a stern look on face]
Ugh, what’s that about…
Here’s what’s crazy, I know she’s right, I knew it the minute I did it that I had valued me being funny over her feelings and yet I did it…
Here’s what’s even crazier – 

I know she’s right and I don’t want to admit it…

What’s that about?  Why is it so hard to face our failings?
WE:

Maybe you’ve seen this in yourself before-your failed promises to your kids are almost expected at this point, but you can’t bring yourself to admit that you failed them-your 3-year-old has started yelling words at cars in traffic that make you blush…  You know where she heard it, but laugh it off – trying to hide your shame-you gossip about people at work constantly, but when someone calls you on the floor about it, you’re actually mad at them – you know you’re in the wrong, but to get called out like that ticks you off…

What is it about being “found out” that’s so hard for us?

I think, at least part of it, is that when we are “found out” it doesn’t match the image we hold in our minds of ourselves.

The image that we’re a “good person”

Honestly, it can be devastating when you really become honest about the sin that lives in you…


TURN: I want to take you into a moment like this for this crowd that has gathered to hear the very first sermon Peter preaches ever..
Peter has been preaching to these people telling them that they saw Jesus – this is 50 days after Jesus was crucified.  The rumor has been going through the town that people are seeing this Jesus whom they had killed alive again…
Peter says this…

Acts 2:36 36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.”
I’ve heard preachers say, “we crucified Jesus with our sins” which is true – He died because we all have hidden and not so hidden sin that He died to redeem us from.
But these people LITERALLY killed Jesus – they were there shouting “crucify” Him.

And it devastates them…  Their sin is exposed – they killed God’s son.
Acts 2:37 37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”
What do you do when the darkness in you is exposed?

What most do, is they hide – they run…

They were brave enough to ask what to do rather than run and hide…
Listen to what Peter tells them to do…

Acts 2:38-39 38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
You are not alone. All of us have sinned – none of us is the “good person” we thought of ourselves as
But Jesus makes a way for us to find that new life
Repent – turn from your old life to embrace God’s new lifeGet baptized – for the forgiveness of sins and to receive God’s Spirit
The promise is yours, the promise that God wants to come and live with you!
This is real folks. Look, some of you have believed in Jesus but for some reason have never taken the step of being baptized and obeying Jesus in this – He said, “go and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the father, son, and holy spirit”
Some of you got baptized as an infant, and while it was a beautiful expression of your parent’s desire to raise you to know Jesus, it’s not the same as a person being cut to the heart and wanting to make a decision as an adult to follow Jesus…
Some of you got baptized and didn’t really know what it meant but now you’re ready to follow Jesus…
And some of you, have never taken the step to following Jesus, but you feel it today, you can feel Him calling to you…
There is a way to be as good of a person as you’ve always wanted to be…  And the good news is it’s not through anything you have to do, other than choosing Jesus!
CLOSING ILLUSTRATION: A few years back, we were going to have a baptism service.  I had preached on how God could restore you and give you new life and told folks we were going to have a few baptisms.  We were singing the invitation song after the sermon and I had this guy come up to me and say, “Kent, I need to be baptized…”  I turned and looked at him and I said, “we don’t have clothes for you…”  He said, “let’s just do it in my church clothes…”  So we got in and baptized him in his church clothes – it was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen… Look, I don’t have clothes up here for you, but what I have I give you. You can start a new life with Jesus today.  It’s time. If you are ready to give up on your sin-ridden life.  If you are ready to join Jesus in pursuit of His Kingdom and life in the easy rhythms of life He offers.  If you are ready for God’s spirit to come on you and give up the ghost of your old life.  Today is the day, come join me in your church clothes and let’s baptize you!
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