In thinking about Pastor Martyn Lloyd-Jone’s teaching on Apostle Paul’s Letter to the Romans, I reread the verses from which he teaches, often in the English Standard Version, ESV. While doing so, I read various commentaries on those particular passages. Sometimes the commentaries offer additional insights, sometimes they differ somewhat in their explanation of the particular verse in question.
Pastor Albert Barnes’s Notes on Romans 6 includes comments on our Baptism into Christ. Pastor MLJ distinguishes this particular Baptism from the water immersion Baptism, which he says is a more public display of faith. This particular Baptism is our entrance into the Kingdom of G-D at the time of our Salvation.
This is to “dedicate or consecrate us to the service of Christ.” wrote Pastor Barnes. “We have been solemnly consecrated by baptism to the service of Christ; and that to sin is therefore a violation of the very nature of our Christian profession.”
Baptized Into Christ. . .“Into – εἰς eis. This is the word which is used in Matthew 28:19, “Teach all nations, baptizing them into εἰς eis the name of the Father,” etc. It means, being baptized unto his service; receiving him as the Saviour and guide, devoting all unto him and his cause,” Pastor Barnes states.
The way the word unto or into is used isn’t what caught my attention; when Pastor MLJ or Pastor Barnes wants to explain a particular word, each looks for similar usages in the Scriptures. What caught my eye was way Pastor Barnes said, “devoting all unto him and his cause.” The Cause of Messiah. The Cause of G-D. Then I spin off to my own looking around for various thoughts on the Cause of Christ.
“So what is the cause that Christ is calling us to? What is His goal? It is simple, but breath-taking: That the entire world in all its aspects would be in voluntary obedience to Jesus Christ BEFORE He returns,” writes Glenn Davis in his article “The Cause of Christ.”
Simple. Okay. But the application seems to me to be a bit more complicated, and certainly not without controversy. Especially these days when the mention of the Name of Yeshua Jesus has become an offensive to many in our Culture of Politically Correctness.
But we don’t make up the strategy; we don’t have to do that at all. We need only live our lives Unto Messiah. To follow the leading of the Spirit. Unto Messiah. To live beneath His Banner, as Citizens of Messiah’s Heavenly Reign.
“Only in total commitment to the cause of Christ can anyone truly live. You may never face physical persecution or martyrdom. That is not the issue. Your commitment to the cause of Christ and willingness to cheerfully follow His commands is the issue. It is also encouraging to know that the success of our cause is ultimately guaranteed. It will happen, the only question is whether you will be a part of it or not,” writes Mr. Davis. [emphasis added]