RE: Focus on the Family: The Sadness

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by ATeenageChristian, Dec 2, 2001.

  1. ATeenageChristian

    ATeenageChristian
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    I find Focus on the Family is teaching to much false things. Like they say that Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings is 100% bad. Just because it includes the stuff. I am strongly against their belief system.

    What are your opinions???
     
  2. Brother Adam

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    The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien are Christian books written from a Christian worldview.

    UNP
    Adam
     
  3. Chris Temple

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by PrayerWarrior12200222:
    I find Focus on the Family is teaching to much false things. Like they say that Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings is 100% bad. Just because it includes the stuff. I am strongly against their belief system.

    What are your opinions???
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Much of what Focus on the Family has done has benefited the Evangelical world, but it is wise to approach them with discernment. Many Baptists listen and follow "Thus saith Dobson" as if it were gospel. The truth is Dobson is a Nazarene, which came from the Wesleyan-Holiness churches, and believes in many non-baptist doctrine, like total sanctification and possible loss of salvation. There is also an unbalanced focus on marriage as essential to being a fulfilled Christian, despite the Lord's and Paul's words concerning the giftedness of being single.
     
  4. donnA

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    What can be good about Harry Potter and the teaching kids about witch craft, and false worship? God warned us about this kind of thing.
     
  5. Joy

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    I am not into those stories either, but it is important to be well informed before we accuse someone or in this case an institution of something.

    In the Dec. 2001 issue of Focus on the Family magazine, there is an article called "Stories Within Stories: Finding God in 'The Lord of the Rings.'" The article is written by Jim Ware. Perhaps you should read the article to find out what Focus really thinks about it. ;)
     
  6. Phillip

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by katie:
    What can be good about Harry Potter and the teaching kids about witch craft, and false worship? God warned us about this kind of thing.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well, let me give you my two cents and you can take it for what its worth (2 cents probably). I for one grew up in a fine Christian home where I was a voracious reader. My mother knew this and did not limit what I read unless it was obvious garbage such as porn, romance novels and other junk. If it was a mainstream novel, she never really had a problem for me reading it and she considered the Lord of the Rings an excellent story. THAT is the key, the word "STORY". If children are normal, typical children, they can usually discern fantasy from real-world. We live a fantasy world with kids anyway. We have Santa Claus who uses magic to fly from house to house with reign-deer and slide down every chimney in the world. We have the Easter Bunny who delivers eggs. and often these fantasies are even related to Christian Holidays. When I was a child, I got boxes from Santa. BUT, every Christmas morning (or Christmas eve when we usually opened our presents) the first thing we did was read the Christmas story and give a prayer of thanks for the salvation of Jesus and celebrated his birth. As a child, I never really remember a time I believed that Santa was real. I may have at a very, very young age, but my memory of childhood is excellent and I don't recall it. By the time I was old enough to accept Jesus --- I did. The point is, if it is presented entirely as "fiction" to your children and they understand that with a good dose of reality of the Lord, plus Sunday School and church and every class or church meeting they can grow up in, I don't think one book about a kid who can fly is going to harm anybody. Any time we watch a movie on tv or read a book that is fiction, we enter this fantasy world and by the time kids are old enough to read they can usually discern. Even our fairy tales are loaded with magic and sorcery. God tells us not to use it, but you must remember that these were used as a form of worship in Old Testament times.

    Let me hit one more thing and I will shut up. Daniel was taken captive and grew up as a Babylonian learning their culture and their witchcraft which was a requirement of schooling of the children. He even used it, but he always praised God or used God as his source of power. Remember when the king could not interpret the writing on the wall and all the "wisemen" (which at the time were wizards or sorcerers) were killed because they failed---Daniel stepped in and read the message, then he gave credit to the Lord for helping him read it. Growing up exposed heavily to real-world old-time witchcraft and sorcery did not hurt Daniel because of his heritage and belief in the Lord. If we train our children with ENOUGH of the BIBLE, we don't need to worry if they read a few fiction books with some fantasy as an escape from the daily grind. That is the two cents of a 43 year old man who grew up reading everything I could get my hands on including Hitler's Mein Kampf, The book of Islam, Lord of the Rings and tons of other Christian and non-Christian material. I didn't turn into a nazi or skin-head, or Islam, but I bet I can understand their mind-set better than a lot of people and that can help me witness if I have a chance to run across someone like this, or teach other people what they believe and explain to them WHY they believe what they do, which is often quite different than the snippits given to you by the news media. I was raised by Christian parents who kept me in church every time the doors were open and today I accept the Lord as my King; but every so often I still escape into a novel just for relaxation. Today, I am more discerning and try to read more novels or books that I know are better such as from Christians like John Grisham for example. ;)

    [ December 02, 2001: Message edited by: Phillip ]
     
  7. Phillip

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    However, a word of warning. Some children have difficulty seperating reality from fantasy. These children usually have difficulties in school and may become trouble makers when they get older because they don't understand any difference. In this case I might be much more careful about what, exactly, I let them read as youngsters. If they tend to take on roles of characters in books they have read (and I mean to an abnormal level--not just play acting for a while) then it would be in your best interest to provide them with good books. It is still going to be difficult to find good teenage books that are fiction and do not have some form of evil in them. For one thing, make sure there are no GRAY lines for good and evil and that GOOD always wins. This is one thing about Lord of the Rings. It was written with the concept of absolute evil and absolute good and absolute good wins every time although they may have to fight the evil to do it.
     
  8. donnA

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    Phillip I don't know anything about Lord of the Rings, so I can't comment. But knowing that HArry Potter is about false religion I wouldn't think any responsable christian parent would allow thier child to have any part of it. Children are impressionable, I have seen mny own and other children acting out favorite cartoons or movies. These are meant to influnce, and they do. It's like food comercials, they are meant to influnce to buy their products or visit their resturants. And you do. They fulfill their purpose, same as movies and cartoons aimed at children.
     
  9. JAMES2

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    I find Focus on the Family nothing more than psycobabble. I used to type Dobson's speeches that appeared in the local newspaper, so I was FORCED to read that stuff on a daily basis.

    I think people could spend their money much more wisely than giving it to a organization that seems to think that all that psycobabble actually does any good.

    As for Harry Potter. Pleeasseee!!!! How can a Christian even THINK about buying that stuff for their kids? Witchcraft is witchcraft no matter how you dress it up. There are so many more good books available to read, why waste your time with such trendy stuff as Harry Potter?

    Just the fact that the whole world is going nuts over those books, standing in line for hours to "get a copy" of the latest book, should be enough to use some caution. I have NEVER seen any book ever promoted so much by the secular press, TV, etc. than the Potter books. I wonder why that is? And then to see people practically killing each other to be first in line so they can get their copy before anyone else does, is just plain sick.

    Have your kids read John Bunyan or some good Christian classic and leave Harry Potter to all the pagans out there. Your kids will get enough of the pagan, anti-christian, "New Age" books on their own without you encouraging or buying Potter books for them.

    James2

    [ December 03, 2001: Message edited by: JAMES2 ]
     
  10. Dr. Bob

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    I agree with Focus (last article about the hidden dangers) - JR Tolkein was NOT a christian and DID NOT write from a christian world view.

    Nor is Harry Potter. Innocuous stories of myth or fairy tales are just that - harmless. They give moral lessons, like the fabulist Aesop.

    But the Lord and Harry (and much of CS Lewis) are vastly different. IMNSHO
     
  11. Phillip

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by katie:
    Phillip I don't know anything about Lord of the Rings, so I can't comment. But knowing that HArry Potter is about false religion I wouldn't think any responsable christian parent would allow thier child to have any part of it. Children are impressionable, I have seen mny own and other children acting out favorite cartoons or movies. These are meant to influnce, and they do. It's like food comercials, they are meant to influnce to buy their products or visit their resturants. And you do. They fulfill their purpose, same as movies and cartoons aimed at children.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I agree with you in concept, but in reality most children who fantasize grow out of it at some point in their lives. As children we played cowboy and indian and shot all our friends. Or we played army, who cared who was the good guy or the bad guy, we just blew each other up. Today, I don't go around blowing up or shooting other people because I play acted things I saw on television or read in books.

    As far as "false religion" goes! Yeahhhh, you might say that, to some extent, but look at the Christmas tree, many think its origin dates back to the druids who sacrificed babies in the winter time on a tree for fertility and good crops in the upcoming summer. Some good Baptists I know won't have a Christmas tree because of this, but they might put greenery around their house which originates from the tree idea. Where do you draw the line. Even many Christian customs such as Baptism came from groups that would "Baptise" people in water to SHOW that the person belonged to THAT particular group. Christianity picked it up and now uses it to show the Christian is in full agreement with the group they are joining. I could go on and on and on and we could find some pagan source for half the things we do.
    My BIG point is: if groups like Focus on the Family and other big groups get on television and say "New York City Blues" (or whatever the name of it is) is going to have naked people on it, we Baptists should boycott it-----guess what? The ratings for the show goes up by a factor of ten. We yell loud and angrily about a fantasy book about a kid who uses magic to fight an evil sorcerer (Yes, I saw the movie.) and guess what? again, we help the movie industry with our word of mouth advertising. It does NOT matter if it is BAD. In fact, children would rather go see something they think the parents would rather them not see simply due to their curiousity. I honestly think that if we make a BIG fuss about Harry Potter that we increase their audience -- especially non-christians will go see it to see why all those goody-two-shoes don't want them to see.

    To be perfectly honest with you. I am a Christian and do not believe in practicing witchcraft or magic, etc. but, the movie was a fantasy world of good against evil and it was probably the cleanest movie I have ever seen in the past five years. If you are THAT concerned of exposing your children to false religions and the world, you might as well keep them at home and not let them go to movies PERIOD. (AND THAT MAY NOT BE A BAD IDEA.) But, when the kids grow up---if you have grown kids like I do, you will see the ones you restricted the most from things like that will probably be the most likely kids to go nuts when they get out from under mama's apron strings because they want to find out "What is out there that I've been hidden from all these years." It is easy to think that way when the kids are small, but I think there needs to be some exposure to the world or kids (and I certainly did) will go through a culture shock when they are turned loose and often go through a period of making up for lost fun for many years. I was one of those kids. Luckily, God watched over me and didn't let me get hurt during my rebellion and party time. This sounds backwards from the fact I READ a lot, but I was highly restricted from going out to social functions where there might be a beer or something bad. If your kids are old enough to know you don't want them reading the book---I already bet you they have read a copy at school if they are into reading!
     
  12. Chris Temple

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Phillip:
    Even many Christian customs such as Baptism came from groups that would "Baptise" people in water to SHOW that the person belonged to THAT particular group. Christianity picked it up and now uses it to show the Christian is in full agreement with the group they are joining. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Philip:

    Christians did not "pick up" baptism from pagan groups, despite any similarities some groups may have with it. Many pagan groups also adhere to some death/burial/resurrection stories of their heroes, but Christianity did not borrow those, either.

    Baptism is a divinely instituted ordinance from our Lord to the church.
     
  13. Ernie Brazee

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Even many Christian customs such as Baptism came from groups that would "Baptise" people in water to SHOW that the person belonged to THAT particular group. Christianity picked it up and now uses it to show the Christian is in full agreement with the group they are joining. I could go on and on and on and we could find some pagan source for half the things we do.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Phiip,

    You are way out in left field, ever read the Bible?


    Title: The Holy Bible, King James Version



    Matthew 3:1 (KJV)
    1In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
    Matthew 3:2 (KJV)
    2And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
    Matthew 3:3 (KJV)
    3For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
    Matthew 3:4 (KJV)
    4And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
    Matthew 3:5 (KJV)
    5Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
    Matthew 3:6 (KJV)
    6And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

    Matthew 3:7 (KJV)
    7But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
    Matthew 3:8 (KJV)
    8Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
    Matthew 3:9 (KJV)
    9And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
    Matthew 3:10 (KJV)
    10And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
    Matthew 3:11 (KJV)
    11I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
    Matthew 3:12 (KJV)
    12Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

    Matthew 3:13 (KJV)
    13Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
    Matthew 3:14 (KJV)
    14But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
    Matthew 3:15 (KJV)
    15And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
    Matthew 3:16 (KJV)
    16And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
    Matthew 3:17 (KJV)
    17And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.


    Romans 6:1 (KJV)
    1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
    Romans 6:2 (KJV)
    2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
    Romans 6:3 (KJV)
    3Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
    Romans 6:4 (KJV)
    4Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
    Romans 6:5 (KJV)
    5For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
    Romans 6:6 (KJV)
    6Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.
    Romans 6:7 (KJV)
    7For he that is dead is freed from sin.
    Romans 6:8 (KJV)
    8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:
    Romans 6:9 (KJV)
    9Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.
    Romans 6:10 (KJV)
    10For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.


    [ December 03, 2001: Message edited by: Ernie Brazee ]
     
  14. Phillip

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chris Temple:


    Philip:

    Christians did not "pick up" baptism from pagan groups, despite any similarities some groups may have with it. Many pagan groups also adhere to some death/burial/resurrection stories of their heroes, but Christianity did not borrow those, either.

    Baptism is a divinely instituted ordinance from our Lord to the church.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Chris, I guess we are going to have to disagree on one. History shows us that Baptism was used by many, many groups just before Christ was on earth. These groups would Baptise their people as a "show" that the people believed in that group and associated with it as a "member" so to speak. During the time of Jesus there were many, many other Jewish teachers parading around carrying groups of desciples that were members of their group. Many of these were Baptised into these groups. When people were going out to be Baptised by John the Baptist--remember that Jesus himself went out and was Baptised too, this indicated that HE--The Son of God--was agreeing with the gospel that John the Baptist was preaching. This is why many Baptist churches require re-baptism of other faiths--just as a "show" or "sign" to the public that the people believed and wanted to belong to the church as a member. This is where membership of the church and Baptism got tied together. It was an old ritual used before Christianity, but borrowed and used in its same way to show that people agreed with the gospel of Jesus Christ. This takes absolutely nothing away from the ordinance of Baptism--in fact, it makes it more understandable as to why we Baptise and why it has nothing to do with salvation. It is to show the world that we are belonging and agreeing with a particular local church group and the doctrine they preach. There are several other things we do that come from historical secular activities that were borrowed simply because that was the culture of the people who were being converted and the specific things were harmless as far as they were related to Christianity and used correctly.

    Also, note that Baptism is used by Paul such as Baptism of the Spirit which is symbolic for accepting the Lord and the Spirit coming to live inside a Christian, etc. etc. It all fits together. If you need some documentation for this, I can no doubt locate it, but my library is quite a wreck right now since I have moved my office and it may take a while.
    God bless.
     
  15. Phillip

    Phillip
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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Ernie Brazee:


    Phiip,

    You are way out in left field, ever read the Bible?


    Title: The Holy Bible, King James Version



    Matthew 3:1 (KJV)
    1In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
    Matthew 3:2 (KJV)
    2And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
    Matthew 3:3 (KJV)
    3For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
    Matthew 3:4 (KJV)
    4And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
    Matthew 3:5 (KJV)
    5Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
    Matthew 3:6 (KJV)
    6And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

    Matthew 3:7 (KJV)
    7But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
    Matthew 3:8 (KJV)
    8Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
    Matthew 3:9 (KJV)
    9And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
    Matthew 3:10 (KJV)
    10And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
    Matthew 3:11 (KJV)
    11I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
    Matthew 3:12 (KJV)
    12Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

    Matthew 3:13 (KJV)
    13Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
    Matthew 3:14 (KJV)
    14But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
    Matthew 3:15 (KJV)
    15And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
    Matthew 3:16 (KJV)
    16And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
    Matthew 3:17 (KJV)
    17And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.


    Romans 6:1 (KJV)
    1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
    Romans 6:2 (KJV)
    2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
    Romans 6:3 (KJV)
    3Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
    Romans 6:4 (KJV)
    4Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
    Romans 6:5 (KJV)
    5For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
    Romans 6:6 (KJV)
    6Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.
    Romans 6:7 (KJV)
    7For he that is dead is freed from sin.
    Romans 6:8 (KJV)
    8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:
    Romans 6:9 (KJV)
    9Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.
    Romans 6:10 (KJV)
    10For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.


    [ December 03, 2001: Message edited by: Ernie Brazee ]
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well, I may be in left field about half the time because of a bad back, but if you will read my post above this one and also look carefully at EVERY verse you posted there is NOTHING that says that other groups during that period of time did NOT use baptism to show that people belonged to that particular group. This is a historical fact and takes nothing away from the fact that WE are baptised to SHOW TO THE WORLD that we have ACCEPTED THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AS OUR SAVIOR AND WE BELIEVE IN WHAT THE LOCAL CHURCH BELIEVES IN. Yes, I have read those verses many, many times, but they simply do not have a bearing on the origination of the physical act of dunking somebody in water as a means of showing what group they belonged to. Christians, including Jesus wanted to be Baptised because it was a sign that they accepted THAT gospel. Remember, the man who said "Here is water, why can't I be Baptised here?" He wanted to immediately show that he was accepting that belief. Don't take what I said out of context and blow it into a big pagan ritual we stole, that is not the case, but it does have historical meaning during the time Jesus was on earth. Read my post above this one for a little better description.

    By the way, let me touch on the burial and ressurection. John the Baptist was Baptising people before Jesus' death as the symbol that I was showing you earlier.

    Later, the symbol actually fit with the death, burial and ressurection. No doubt that God had this planned all along, but it made it easy to accept this symbolism -- which if you will notice was not used until Paul used it when he went to Gentile churches and spread beyond the Jewish realm where people were unfamiliar with the practice. Surprisingly (but it shouldn't be, as I said God plans everything) it fit the description very well and this is the reason we Baptists immerse instead of sprinkle because that takes away the symbolism that was added after the death and ressurection of Christ.


    God Bless you too.

    [ December 05, 2001: Message edited by: Phillip ]
     
  16. Ernie Brazee

    Ernie Brazee
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    Phillip,

    Baptism is not a ritual to identify membship in an organiztion, scriptural baptism is a picture of what has taken place in a believer's life: death to the old life, burial of the old man and raised to live thereafter for Christ. After this act of obedience one is accepted as a member of the local church which has the authority to administer this ordinance.

    Christ's baptism was merely a pictue of His willingness to obey his Heavenly Father. After his baptism he spent the rest of his life on earth preparing his disciples to follow his example.

    All the verses relating to this have already been posted.

    Ernie
     

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