Accept the Initiation: The Flood
Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 3:18-23
Key Verse: 1 Peter 3:21
…and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also–not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ
The Apostle Peter is reminding his readers that God used Noah long ago to reach out to a lost generation. During the building of the ark, Noah preached repentance. This ark building time was their grace period—a time to turn from their evil ways. The door was open to all, no one needed to die in the coming flood. God was preparing a way to be saved because of His infinite mercy.
Unfortunately, only eight were saved. Noah and his family trusted God enough to follow His instructions and get into the ark. These eight were saved through the water. They did not realize that they were experiencing a baptism of sorts, setting up the model of New Testament salvation. The water around them did not save them, but their faith in the ark did.
So it is, according to the Apostle Peter, that water baptism is a symbol of salvation for all who believe. Baptism is the outward sign of a work already accomplished by faith in Jesus. As Peter says, the water is not for the removal of dirt from the body. Baptism is our pledge or our commitment to God, through faith in His Son. Baptism serves as a lasting reminder of our decision to trust and follow Jesus Christ.
Father, thank you for creating memorials such as baptism and communion that remind me of your love and grace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.