This morning we have the privilege to witness and participate in two ancient traditions and rituals of the church — Baptism and Communion. But they are more than that. When we think of tradition and ritual we usually think of things that are old and out of date. Well, they’re not just old, they’re irrelevant. They might make us feel good to participate in them, but they have no real effect in a real world.
Think about it…
We open our eyes. We get up. We dress. We eat breakfast. We get out the door. We make the drive to wherever we’re going. We arrive and go about our duties. We work. We take breaks. We meet people. We work some more. We get back in our car and we drive back to where our day began. Maybe we do some chores. Maybe we go out with some others. Maybe we sit and watch the latest episode of NCIS. But then we brush our teeth. We pull off our socks and put on our PJs. We climb back into bed and we close our eyes.
We don’t think of it as such, but that’s ritual and tradition. We don’t pay attention to it because we don’t attach much sentiment to it, but it’s still ritual and tradition. The only way any of that has meaning for us is if we intentionally infusing meaning and importance into it. Baptism and communion are just ritual and tradition… unless you infuse meaning and importance into them. Unless you make them purposeful.
For those who were baptized this morning, they had already decided that this was an important step for them and they purposed to do it. Sometime ago actually, each of these individuals, discovered that they were in need of a real Saviour. They gave their lives to Him and He gave them new life. That was the exchange.