Baptism is a rite of passage. The Jewish people passed through the Red Sea to the Promised Land in the great exodus. Jesus himself wanted to make this exodus by passing through suffering and death into the house of his heavenly Father. This was his baptism. He asked his disciples and now asks us: “Can you … be baptised with the baptism with which I shall be baptised?” (Mark 10:38). When the apostle Paul, therefore, speaks about our baptism, he calls it a baptism into Jesus’ death (Romans 6:4).
To be baptised means to make the passage with the people of Israel and with Jesus from slavery to freedom and from death to new life. It is a commitment to a life in and through Jesus.
Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. - Romans 6: 3, 4 (NIV)
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