Baptism

Proper 7

June 22, 2014
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Genesis 21:8-21
Reading 2: 
Psalm 86:1-10, 16-17
Reading 3: 
Romans 6:1b-11
Reading 4: 
Matthew 10:24-39
By Ron Allen

The Priestly theologians gave the book of Genesis its present form shortly after the exile. The Priests believed that God sought to bless the entire world and that Israel had a particular mission within that purpose, namely, to alert the other nations to blessing.

Baptism of Jesus/First Sunday after Epiphany

January 8, 2012
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Genesis 1:1-5
Reading 2: 
Psalm 29
Reading 3: 
Acts 19:1-7
Reading 4: 
Mark 1:4-11
By Bruce G. Epperly

Epiphany proclaims a democracy of revelation. All people shall experience God’s glory. Revelation is built into reality and an omnipresent God, defined by relational love not unilateral power, seeks the well-being of all creation and humankind, no exceptions. Still, ubiquity does not require uniformity. All are touched, all are welcomed, and all are inspired. Yet, some spots and some persons more fully express God’s vision for humankind. This is not just a matter of our responsiveness; it is also the character of God’s call to us.

Baptism of Christ/First Sunday after Epiphany

January 9, 2011
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Isaiah 42:1-8
Reading 2: 
Psalm 29
Reading 3: 
Acts 10:(1-20)34-43
Reading 4: 
Matthew 3:13-17
By Bruce G. Epperly

The Baptism of Jesus, or “the Baptism of our Lord,” could be renamed “God’s Love is for Us All.” In the spirit of Epiphany, the readings join intimacy with universality. God’s love is universal; all are chosen, personally as concrete human beings. There is no room here for theologies of exclusion, dividing the world from eternity into elect and reprobate, or saved and damned.

Service of Adult Baptism and Confirmation

Author - First Name: 
C. Kit
Author - Last Name: 
Wilke

[This service has evolved over several years. It reflects our practice of inclusiveness at First Congregational Church, Long Beach and the contemporary language of our young people. It understands that the proper meaning of “faith” is more close to “trust” than to “belief” and that affirmation of beliefs is far less significant than the courageous living-out of faith. Particular care has been given to remove the ambiguity, personalism and possible anti-physical and anti-sexual overtones of more traditional services. Yet it also seeks to remain within Trinitarian orthodoxy.

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