Romans 6:3-4, “Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? We were buried therefore with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”

Today I’m drawing from a passage that I read a few mornings ago in Romans. This time through Romans I’m really wanting to slow down and try to track carefully with Paul’s logic…every passage is so dense that you could easily–like John Piper did–spend 8 years walking through this book (and that would be, of course, only the gleanings of a water strider on the Pacific Ocean).

What struck me about 6:3-4 (and really Paul’s whole argument  from 5:12 on) is that death is like a mile high, mile wide, mile deep barbed wire fence around the prison kingdom of sin. No one leaves this kingdom unless they can get around death (spiritual -> physical -> eternal)….and no one gets around death……until Christ. He dies (in every way death can kill, spiritually, physically, and the equivelance of eternally)–and then RISES again…..it’s as if the death and resurrection of Christ is a tunnel delved under the walls of death with the cross as the entrance and the open tomb as the exit.

By faith, we have spiritually already passed with Christ down into the tunnel of his death and out through His reasurrection on side, into the Far Green Country of fellowship with the Living God. And, Paul says, if we we have spiritually died and been raised with Christ by grace through faith, we can be sure that we will join Him in that journey physically in due time….

And this is the reality and hope that baptism signifies. It declares the reality (in God’s sight, which is the only sight that matters) that our old self–the “us” who deserved, and received, damnation in Christ–DIED with Jesus, we were BURIED with him, and we were RAISED with Him….and it looks forward to the sure hope of our physical resurrection by His power in the age to come.

So, for today’s picture, I wanted to show something of the spiritual reality that we are declaring when we are baptized by faith in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

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