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 Sermons on important subjects by Rev. Paul C. Jong

 

Jesus Who Came to Blot Out Your Sins


< Matthew 3:13-17 >
“Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him.And John tried to prevent Him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?’ But Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he allowed Him. When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’”



Even as today’s Christians profess to believe in Jesus as their Savior, many of them do not know that Jesus is the Lord who has delivered us from all our sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. It is therefore necessary to prove to them, with this gospel of the water and the Spirit, that Jesus is indeed their Savior. As all are born as sinners, to be washed from all their sins, all must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. In other words, to be born again, they must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and only when they believe so can they meet the Lord. Whether or not we can receive the remission of our sins and be born again depends on whether or not we know and believe in Jesus Christ correctly.

For us, the most important key to reach the truth of the remission of sin is knowing and believing who the Lord is and what the Lord has done. When Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do you say that I am?” Peter answered by saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” That Peter thus confessed his true faith was because he was led and taught by God the Father to reach this understanding.

Now, we must also reach the correct understanding of the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and like Peter, we must be able to make the true confession of faith to our Lord. What we must all grasp here is the need to recognize and believe that the baptism of Jesus and His bloodshed on the Cross were exactly the sacrifice that our Lord made to shoulder our sins and be condemned for these sins. When we believe so, we can be wholly delivered from all our sins.

The Word of God is divided into two parts: the Old and New Testaments. The New Testament is the fulfillment of the prophecies promised in the Old Testament. And it is also the record of the prophetic announcement of the new world to come, which the Lord has promised to His disciples. This new world will soon be fulfilled to us by Jesus Christ. The Old Testament is also the true Word of God that records the prophesy of mankind’s salvation, that the Son of God would come to this earth, and that just as hands were laid on the sacrificial offering of the Old Testament and its blood was shed, He would take upon all the sins of the world once for all by being baptized by John, shed His blood on the Cross, and thereby save all the sinners of the world from their sins. Through the sacrificial system manifested in the Tabernacle, our Lord has revealed to us that He is the Savior who would fulfill this promise, and that He has indeed achieved this. Put differently, the entire Old Testament is achieved exactly throughout the New Testament by our Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus has given us the true gospel of the water and the Spirit, so that when we believe in Him as our Savior, we would all correctly understand and believe that the Savior prophesied in the Old Testament to come is indeed our Lord Jesus Christ.

The sacrificial system in the Old Testament was the stepping-stones of God’s revelation to reach the whole truth of His salvation, and it enables us to receive the remission of our sins infallibly by understanding and believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Jesus has enabled us to realize why He had to be baptized by John the Baptist, and how, because of this baptism, He had to shed His blood on the Cross. It is only when we reach the correct understanding of this gospel truth that we can truly be saved and become God’s own people. The gospel truth of the water and the Spirit that Jesus has given us is what enables us to correctly understand and believe in His public ministries of salvation.



These Are the Ministries of the Water and the Spirit That Jesus Fulfilled When He Came to This Earth

The core Word of the New Testament is this: Coming to this earth, Jesus took upon all the sins of the world through the baptism that He received from John, and He has thereby paid off all the wages of sin with His blood. The life and death of your souls depend on whether you correctly understand and believe in this gospel of the water and the Spirit. And, in fact, all the 39 books of the Old Testament and 27 books of the New Testament describe in detail this pivotal truth of the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

The sacrificial animal that was offered in the Tabernacle of the Old Testament for the sins of the people of Israel could wash away their sins, for they had laid their hands on its head and offered its blood and flesh to God. Only by reaching a comparative understanding of this sacrificial system of the Old Testament and the baptism and bloodshed of Jesus in the New Testament can we also correctly understand the remission of our sins and believe in it. In other words, just as a sacrificial lamb or goat had accepted the iniquities of sinners with the laying of their hands or the hands of the High Priest, it was by being baptized by John the Baptist that Jesus could accept our sins of the world and shed His blood on the Cross.

Even though we don’t know all the details of the Bible, when we get the clear and concrete understanding of the baptism and bloodshed of Jesus in the New Testament as compared with the sacrificial system of the Old Testament, we can receive the remission of sin by faith. We must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit to receive the remission of sin given by God.

Jesus wrote the gospel of the water and the Spirit that can wash away all our sins as the written Word of God. To the believers of the gospel of the water and the Spirit, He has entrusted priesthood, so that everyone on this earth would wash away his sins with faith. In the Old Testament, this priesthood was promised only to the descendants of Levi. It was these descendants of Levi who were given the duties of interceders that washed away the Israelites’ sins and fulfilled the just love of God. As such, we the believers of the gospel of the water and the Spirit must understand the sacrificial system of the Old Testament, and thereby reach an even deeper understanding of Jesus’ baptism and His crucifixion to fulfill this priesthood properly before God in this age of the New Testament.

It has now been 2003 years since Jesus Christ was born on this earth. This Jesus came to this earth as the Savior, and by receiving baptism from John and being crucified to shed His blood, He has forever washed away all our sins. Therefore, it is only proper that the year of Jesus’ birth would become the benchmark of the chronological table of world history. It symbolizes the fact that the beginning of all things is from Jesus Christ, for as far as we are concerned, Jesus Christ is God Himself who created this universe and the Savior who has blotted out all our sins with His water and blood, and He also stands at the center of the history of the universe.



Is Today’s Scriptural Passage Telling Us of the Passing of Our Sins?

In today’s scriptural passage, it is written, “Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him.And John tried to prevent Him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?’ But Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he allowed Him. When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’”

All of us are the descendants of Adam, born with twelve ingredients of sin from the very day we were born in this world, and therefore we all had no choice but to be put to death for our sins and be condemned for them before God (Mark 7:21-23). We could not avoid but live cowardly and die hopelessly because of our sins, and we were all bound to the terrifying fire of hell. However, Jesus was born on this earth, when we were at the verge of eternal destruction. He was born in the appearance of a lowly one, to deliver us mankind from all the sins of the world. It was to deliver such people like you and me from the everlasting sins of this world that the Lord came to this earth incarnated in the flesh of a man.

When our Lord turned 30, He bore the sins of the world by being baptized by John in the Jordan River. At that time, John the Baptist was giving his baptism of repentance to many Israelites that made them return to God. But the baptism that John the Baptist gave to Jesus was to fulfill all the righteousness of God. It was a baptism that was given to pass all the sins of this world to the body of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God.

John the Baptist was the representative of mankind (Matthew 11:11). And he was the last prophet of the Old Testament, the biblically legitimate priest who was born from the house of the High Priest, and thus, ministered as the last priest of the age of the Old Testament (Luke 1:1-21). Therefore, all of us must understand the ministry of John the Baptist without fail before we try to understand the ministry of Jesus. The truth is that Jesus Christ accepted the sins of the world through His baptism received from John. We must understand this truth and believe in it. Only when we reach an in-depth knowledge of the ministry of John the Baptist can we understand it in connection with the ministry of Jesus and thoroughly understand the whole truth of the remission of sin, of the true atonement.

The Old and New Testaments make profound prophecies about and detailed descriptions of the ministry of John the Baptist. Matthew 11:11 writes about John the Baptist as the following: “Among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist.” In chapters 3 and 4 of the Book of Malachi in the Old Testament, it was prophesied that God would send Elijah. Malachi 4:5 says, “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD,” followed by verse 6, “And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.” The Bible teaches us that this Elijah who was prophesied in the Book of Malachi in the Old Testament was none other than John the Baptist who passed the sins of mankind, the sins of the world, to Jesus through His baptism.

In the New Testament, Jesus Himself said that John the Baptist was “the greatest of all those born of women,” and “the Elijah who is to come”(Matthew 11:12-13). What, then, is the role that John the Baptist fulfilled when He came to this world? As the representative of all mankind, John the Baptist was the one who passed the sins of the world to Jesus by baptizing Him. He was the one who fulfilled the ministry that turned the hearts of sinners to God, as well as the one who baptized Jesus to pass the sins of the world to Him. As someone who was born from the house of Aaron the High Priest by the providence of God, John the Baptist was qualified to carry out the duties of the High Priest (Luke 1:1-10). Therefore, John the Baptist was the one who fulfilled his priestly duty to pass everyone’s sins to Jesus through His baptism.

The reason why John the Baptist had to come to this earth was to pass the sins of the world to Jesus by baptizing Him. And John the Baptist was the one who rebuked the people who had left God and testified to them that Jesus Christ was the Son of God, the sacrificial Lamb that would blot out the sins of the world with His baptism and bloodshed. By coming to John the Baptist as the sacrificial offering that would make the sins of this world disappear and being baptized by him, Jesus fulfilled the prophesy about the laying of hands on the head of sacrificial offerings written in the Book of Leviticus (Leviticus 1:3-5).

This is why John the Baptist had to baptize Jesus and pass the sins of this world to Him, and thereby fulfill the righteousness of God, the will of God the Father. Jesus was the Lamb of God who accepted the sins of everyone in this world by being baptized by the greatest of all those born of women. In other words, it was because Jesus wanted to accept the sins of this world once for all that He was baptized by John the Baptist.

When John the Baptist was giving the baptism of repentance to the people of Israel, Jesus came to him and said, “Baptize Me. It is fitting for Me to be baptized by you and fulfill all the righteousness of God” (Matthew 3:15). To bear all the sins of this world, Jesus had to receive His baptism from John the Baptist, for it was the baptism through which He took upon all the sins of everyone in this world. By thus bearing all the sins of this world through this baptism received from John the Baptist, and by being crucified to shed His blood and rising from the dead again in three days, Jesus has become the everlasting Savior God.

Thus, Jesus was baptized because it was fitting for Him to fulfill the will of God the Father (Matthew 3:15). And it was by this will of God the Father that John the Baptist baptized Him. In other words, Jesus received the spiritual laying on of hands and shed His blood just like the Old Testament’s sacrificial offering. In Leviticus 16, we see that two sacrificial goats accepted the yearly sins of the people of Israel with the laying on of the hands of the High Priest. Just like this, Jesus accepted all the sins of this world once for all through the baptism He received from John the Baptist and shed His precious blood on the Cross. Jesus is therefore the Savior of mankind who accepted their sins onto His own head by being baptized.

Jesus is the only begotten Son of God the Father, and the heavenly High Priest of the Kingdom of God. As such, for John the Baptist, the representative of mankind, to fulfill his priesthood as the earthly High Priest, he had to meet Jesus the High Priest of the Kingdom of Heaven and fulfill all the righteousness of God the Father. Through the baptism of Jesus, the just love of God came to be realized.

Who, then, is higher between John and Jesus? Of course, Jesus the heavenly High Priest is higher than John the Baptist. Jesus is more exalted than anyone else, for He is God Himself who created the entire universe, and He is also the Son of God who came to this earth to save mankind from the sins of the world. To save mankind from the sins of the world, Jesus came to this earth and was baptized by John the Baptist. Jesus is not a mere creature like us.

In the baptism that Jesus received from John, there is God’s special work. When Jesus came to John the Baptist to be baptized, John said to Jesus, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?” As we can see, John at first declined to pass all sins to Jesus by baptizing Him, but in the end he could not refuse, for Jesus Himself wanted to be baptized by him and thereby bear all the sins of the world. So Jesus commanded John to baptize Him, saying, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15).

Before Jesus Christ was baptized by John the Baptist, Gentiles and Jews alike all had sins in each of their hearts, and therefore they could not avoid but be condemned and destroyed for their sins. We know very well that everyone is a fragile being who cannot avoid but be destroyed for sinning against God in this world. This is why Jesus took upon all the sins of the world by being baptized by John. Our Lord had to fulfill this work through John the Baptist. For Jesus to take upon all the sins of these people, He had to receive from John the Baptist the baptism that would fulfill all the righteousness of God.

“Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). Here, “all righteousness” is (pasan dikaiosunen) in Greek. This word ‘dikaiosune’ means “the fairest state” or “righteousness,” or “equity.” Just as the sacrificial offering of the Old Testament had blotted out all the sins of the Israelites by bearing them all, in the New Testament, Jesus washed away all the sins of the entire mankind by coming to this earth and bearing all their sins by being baptized by John. Fundamentally speaking, Jesus came to this earth as the Lamb of God, and by thus becoming the sacrificial offering for our own sins, He has delivered us from the sins of this world. The reason why the Savior became man and sought to be baptized by John the Baptist lies in the fulfillment of this righteousness of God.

Jesus said, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Spiritually, this means, “It is fitting for Me to take upon everyone’s sins once for all by being baptized by you and wash them all away.” This also means that the baptism Jesus received from John the Baptist was the fulfillment of the laying on of hands of the Old Testament, which, in turn, means that Jesus actually accepted the sins of mankind once for all. Therefore, we must all have the faith that knows and believes in the truth manifested in this baptism that Jesus received. We must know the result of the baptism that Jesus received from John and His bloodshed on the Cross, and we must understand and believe in it correctly.

The Presbyterian Church gives an abridged version of baptism, where its followers are baptized not by full immersion in water, but by sprinkling, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In the Scriptures, this kind of baptism was given in water-scarce regions, such as desert areas. This is how, for instance, Philip baptized the Ethiopian eunuch. But when Jesus was baptized by John, He stood in the Jordan River waist-deep. The baptism that Jesus received from John was one where John the Baptist laid his two hands on Jesus’ head, immersing Him in the water, and then raising Him out. This baptism was the same as the Old Testament’s laying on of hands, where the High Priest had passed the sins of the Israelites by putting his two hands on the head of the sacrifice. The baptism that Jesus received from John was the baptism through which He accepted the sins of the world to bear them all.

What is the significance of the fact that John the Baptist put his hands on Jesus’ head to baptize Him? In the Old Testament, the ritual of ‘laying on of hands’ was performed in the following cases: 1) to pass one’s sins to his sacrificial offering (Leviticus 1:1-10; 4:1-25); 2) to consecrate the servants of God (Numbers 8:10, 27:18); and 3) to return the blasphemy to the blasphemer (Leviticus 24:14).

Whatever the case was, ‘laying on of hands’ was the way of ‘passing something on.’ When a servant is consecrated as a pastor, for instance, senior pastors lay their hands on his head, signifying that their God-given power and gifts are now also given to the new pastor. This means that with the laying on of hands, all the gifts and power that had been permitted to the senior pastors are now bestowed on the new pastor also.

However, the most typical case of ‘laying on of hands’ was of the sacrificial system, which was performed to pass sins onto the sacrificial animal. And parallel to this, the reason why John the Baptist put his hands on Jesus’ head was to pass all the sins of the world. This is why to this day, when pastors baptize believers, they invariably put their hands on their heads. Why is this done? It is as a sign of their faith, to show that they believe that Jesus bore the sins of the world through His baptism, that they are baptized.

As the Savior, Jesus took upon the sins of the world by being baptized by John the Baptist, the representative of mankind. This was the same as the High Priest of the Old Testament passing the sins of the people of Israel to the sacrifice by laying his hands on its head (Leviticus 16:11).

Being baptized by John the Baptist, the representative of mankind, Jesus was immersed in water and then came out of it. Spiritually speaking, this symbolizes the fact that because Jesus took upon our sins of the world once for all by being baptized by John, He would eventually die on the Cross, rise from the dead again, and thereby become the perfect Savior. It tells us that Jesus accepted the sins of this world through His baptism, shouldered our sins, and was condemned for all sins by shedding His blood on the Cross.

In short, Jesus’ baptism of the laying on of hands implies that He accepted the sins of the world, His immersion into the water signifies His death on the Cross, and His coming out of the water indicates His resurrection. For all of us, in other words, Jesus has fulfilled the righteousness of God by vicariously satisfying the requirements of the law of sin and death that we ourselves had to meet. This is why the Bible states, “For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit” (Romans 8:3-4).

At this time, when Jesus came up from the water, God the Father opened the gates of Heaven and said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased”(Matthew 3:17). God had planned to blot out all the sins of mankind through His Son before the creation. And this work was fulfilled by His Son by coming to this earth, taking upon the sins of mankind by being baptized by John, shedding His blood, and thereby perfectly delivering His believers from sin. By being baptized and shedding His blood, our Lord fulfilled all the will of God once for all.

Therefore, when Jesus obeyed the Father’s will by taking upon all the sins of mankind with His baptism, God the Father was pleased with His Son Jesus, saying, “He who did this is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” This is why Christians must believe in the baptism that Jesus received from John, as well as in the blood that Jesus shed on the Cross as the condemnation of all our sins. This is why God the Father opened the gates of Heaven and said that the One who was baptized now was His Son, in whom He was well pleased.



“Behold, the Lamb of God Who Takes Away the Sin of the World!”

Now turning to John 1:29, you and I must understand the evidence proving that Jesus took upon the sins of the world once for all by being baptized by John the Baptist, and we must believe this with our hearts. John the Baptist, seeing Jesus whom He had baptized coming toward him on the very next day of His baptism, testified, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

Put differently, John testified, “None other than Jesus is the very Savior of mankind, the Savior who accepted all their sins through His baptism and who would shed His blood for them.” On the next day, seeing Jesus again, John testified once more, “Behold the Lamb of God!” Because Jesus had already been baptized by John the Baptist, and now that He had thus accepted the sins of the world, He had to be crucified and shed His blood. This is why John the Baptist testified, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

We must understand the meaning of the phrase “the sin of the world” and decide whether to believe the truth of His baptism or not. What is the correct understanding of the sins of this world? Many people generally think that the “world” here, temporally speaking, only entails their own little world-that is, whatever they have known from the time they were born to their present. But the correct understanding of the sins of the world requires us to regard the “world” here as the all-encompassing time from the beginning of this universe to its end.

I was told that some kind of dayfly could live only a day at most. For such insects, living for 12 hours means living half their lifetime. If they last a bit longer, they would already be facing their sunset, and if they live up to 24 hours, they would then have lived their full lifetime. So naturally, the concept of “tomorrow” has no meaning for them.

Like this, since we live for only 70-80 years, we don’t really have a clear understanding of such concepts as “eternity” or “infinity.” However, our Lord the Almighty God is saying to us: the world is the time from the beginning of this universe to day it ends. In other words, our concept of time is definitely different from the temporal concept of the world that God is speaking of here. The time of the world that our Lord is speaking of is far more expansive than our conception.

Our faith must be based on the Word of God-that is, we must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit written in God’s Word. Therefore, when we consider what John said-“The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”-or what our Lord Himself said-“For thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness”-we must understand them to mean that Jesus took upon the sins of all human beings with His baptism and carried them to the Cross, and we must believe this with our hearts.

When did Jesus bear the sins of this world? Jesus took upon the sins of the world once for all when He accepted all sins by being baptized in the Jordan River by John. The phrase “for thus” here is ‘hutos gar’ in Greek, which means ‘just in this way,’ ‘most fitting,’ or ‘there is no other way besides this.’ This word shows that Jesus irreversibly took the sins of humankind onto Him through the baptism He received from John. In other words, Jesus could blot out the sins of the world only when He was baptized by John without fail. We must therefore invariably understand the baptism of Jesus and His bloodshed as the remission of our sins and believe as such.

With this method of passing the sins of the world to Jesus, where John the Baptist laid his hands on Jesus’ head, Jesus took upon the sins of the world once for all, shed His blood, and thereby completed our atonement to perfection. This was the purpose of Jesus’ baptism. We understand that in the Old Testament, the laying of hands on the sacrificial offering and its bloodshed meant the atonement of the Israelites. Likewise, we must believe that through His baptism, Jesus has washed away everyone’s sins by accepting the sins of the world, and that we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all (Hebrews 10:10).

The word “baptism,” in Greek, means “being immersed.” Therefore, “to baptize” literally means to immerse or to submerge under water. To be more exact, it means: 1) to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one’s self, bathe; 2) to overwhelm; 3) to bury; and 4) to pass on.

Here lies the reason why you must understand the gospel of the water and the Spirit properly and believe in it: First of all, all your sins were passed onto Jesus through the baptism that He received from John. Because Jesus accepted all our sins of the world through His baptism, all those who believe this are now without sin. Since by being baptized Jesus has already washed away all the sins of the world, there can no longer be any sin. Jesus was the Lamb of God who took away the sins of this world. These sins of the world include all the sins that you have ever committed and will ever commit, from those committed in your childhood to your adulthood and to those that you will commit until the day you die. By being baptized by John, Jesus fulfilled all righteousness, shouldering all these sins and carrying them to the Cross.

Second, the meaning of washing denotes that as the sins of the world were passed onto Jesus with His baptism, they were all washed away. Third, the meaning of burial implies that when the sins of the world were with us, we had to bear the condemnation of sin and be cast into the fire of hell, but now that our sins were passed onto Jesus through our faith in His baptism, Jesus had to die for our sins in our place. This is why Jesus was baptized in our place, was vicariously crucified and bled to death in our stead, was buried in our place, and rose from the dead again. By thus being baptized, crucified, and buried; by rising from the dead again; by sitting on the right hand of God the Father; and by letting all sinners come to know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, Jesus has enabled all who believe in this to receive the remission of their sins by faith.

When we are saved by believing in Jesus as the Savior, in His baptism and His blood on the Cross, then we can actually become God’s own children. For us, this means that our sins were passed onto Jesus. Because Jesus was baptized by John and shed His blood on the Cross, our sins can no longer be with us. All our sins, from those committed in our childhood to those committed in adulthood and to the day we die, were wholly passed onto the body of Jesus and were condemned already. It is because all our sins were passed onto Jesus that He shed His blood on the Cross in our place, died and rose from the dead, and has thereby given us new life.

Now, if we believe in this Jesus as the Savior, then we can all become sinless. Those of you who from now on know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, understand it, and believe in it with the heart are all righteous. You are no longer sinners. You are now righteous. It is by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that you can become righteous. We cannot attain our salvation with our own endeavors, for we will continue to be insufficient and commit sin, but the Lord has already washed away all our sins with the baptism that He received from John and the blood that He shed on the Cross. So it is by knowing the truth that salvation comes into our hearts.



The Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Proven by the Sacrificial System of the Tabernacle of the Old Testament

First of all, let me briefly explain the basic physical layout of the Old Testament’s Tabernacle. The Tabernacle itself was a relatively small structure, but it was surround by an outer court that was fenced in with pillars and screens of fine woven linen. There was a gate to this court, and past this gate, as one approached toward the Tabernacle, there stood the altar of burnt offering, and the laver of bronze was located past this altar. The Tabernacle itself was divided into two parts: the Holy Place and the Most Holy. The doors of this House of God (one for the Holy Place and another for the Most Holy), as well as the gate of its court, were all woven of blue, purple, and scarlet thread and fine woven linen.

Why did God make all the doors and gate of the Tabernacle by weaving them with these blue, purple, and scarlet thread and fine woven linen? The reason is because through them, God was foretelling how Jesus would come to this earth, take upon the sins of the world once for all through the baptism that He would receive from John, and be crucified and shed His blood. By being baptized by John the Baptist and crucified for the sins of the world, Jesus took His own body as the sacrificial offering for us.

By believing in Jesus as the Savior, and by believing in the Word telling us that Jesus who became the blue, purple, and scarlet thread took upon the sins of the world by being baptized, we can at once be delivered from all our sins by faith. Jesus used these blue, purple, and scarlet thread and fine woven linen for the door of the Tabernacle in order to tell us that He is the King of kings, and that He has saved us from our sins by being baptized and crucified. The blue, purple, and scarlet thread and the fine woven used for the door of the Tabernacle are none other than the antitype of salvation, telling us that the Lord has saved us perfectly (1 Peter 3:21).

This is why if we were to open the gate of the court of the Tabernacle and enter, we would see the laver of bronze past the altar of burnt offering. The altar of burnt offering shows us God’s law of justice prior to His law of salvation, that “it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.” Through the altar of burnt offering, in other words, God showed us beforehand that we would be condemned for our sins. If we really believe in Jesus as the Savior, then we must realize that in the Old Testament, in order for the Israelites to be saved from all their sins and the condemnation of sin, they had to pass their sins to their sacrificial offering and kill it before the altar.

Like this, Jesus took upon the sins of the world once for all by being baptized by John, and this is how He could be crucified and shed His blood for us. Coming to this earth, our Lord bore our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist and bore all our condemnation of sin once for all. In short, by being baptized, shedding His blood, and rising from the dead again in order to save us from our sins and condemnation, Jesus has become our true Savior.



Where Are Our Personal Sins Now Found?

What, then, must we do about our personal sins that we will continue to commit daily as we live on? Brothers and sisters, if we remember everyday that all our sins were passed onto Jesus when He was baptized in the Jordan River, that is, if we continue to believe in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit with our hearts, then we will always remain sinless. Why? Because Jesus, knowing that we would sin everyday, took upon all the sins of the world by being baptized by John, carried them to the Cross, shed His blood, rose from the dead again, and blotted them out all at once.

However, this truth of salvation, the gospel truth of the water and the Spirit, is effective only when we truly understand it and believe in it with all our hearts. We can become perfectly sinless only by remembering and believing that all our sins were passed onto Jesus and washed away when He was baptized by John, for we sin everyday. We have been washed from all our original sin and personal sins by our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

Dear fellow Christians, if you want to be remitted from all your sins, then you must understand and believe that all our sins were passed onto Jesus when He was baptized. And you must always ruminate on the Word of the true gospel, especially whenever you commit actual sins. Only then can your hearts be always cleansed, and only then can you be qualified to serve the righteous works of God. The gospel of the water and the Spirit is that all our sins were passed onto Jesus when He was baptized by John, and that He was condemned for them on the Cross. It is through the gospel of the water and the Spirit that the Bible tells us about the remission of sin.

All of us must regard and believe in the Word of God as the truth. If you believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then it is impossible for you to have any sin. If we really believe in Jesus Christ as the Savior, then we are the people of faith who believe that Jesus at once took upon all the sins of this world, whatever they might be, through the baptism that He received from John. The baptism that Jesus received from John has made everyone sinless, just as the Book of Romans tells us, “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous”(Romans 5:19).

As we live in this world, we sin everyday. Were all our sins passed onto Jesus already? All our sins were already passed onto the body of Jesus a very long time ago, more than 2,000 years ago. Were the sins that we are to commit out of our weaknesses in the future also passed onto Jesus, and was He condemned for them as well? That is right.

Does this then mean that it’s okay for us to commit all kinds of sin at our whim? That is not the case. Even those who have been born again by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are, of course, all bound to continue to sin out of their weaknesses. However, they can still keep their hearts clean at all times by ruminating on the true gospel of the water and the Spirit. People sin more out of their weakness than out of their voluntary will.

Therefore, when the believers of the gospel of the water and the Spirit experience their weaknesses, they cannot but thank the Lord even more by renewing their faith in His baptism and bloodshed, for the Lord has already washed away all their sins with His baptism and His blood on the Cross and was condemned for them. Now they are not bound by sin anymore, but rather they willingly volunteer to spread this truth to others. By doing so, our hearts are rejoiced even more.

What about you then? Do you believe that to blot out all your sins, Jesus came to this world, was baptized by John the Baptist, shed His blood to death, and rose from the dead again? Yes, we are giving our thanks to Jesus who came to blot out our sins perfectly. And He has indeed made them completely disappear once for all.

In the Tabernacle of the Old Testament, entering through the gate of its court and passing by the altar of burnt offering, we would come across the laver of bronze. While measurements and limits were specified for all other utensils of the Tabernacle, no such limited measurements were given for this laver of bronze. Spiritually speaking, this symbolizes the fact that by being baptized and shedding His blood, Jesus has blotted out all our sins unlimitedly. Like this, the laver of bronze has the unlimited efficacy to wash away all our sins. It holds the power to wash them all away.

This laver was made of bronze, implying that all sins must be condemned. But it contained the water to wash the priests’ hands and feet. This tells us that the Lord has completely washed away the sins of the world by being baptized. When the priests of the Old Testament gave sacrifices at the altar of burnt offering, they were smeared with all kinds of filth, from animal blood to feces, as they slaughtered sacrificial offerings after laying their hands on them. It was with the water of the laver that they washed themselves of such filth. Like this, this laver of bronze implies the baptism of Jesus that has washed away filthy sins. All our personal sins that we commit in this world have already been blotted out through Jesus’ baptism. This is what the laver of bronze reveals. By believing in this truth, we can be remitted from all our sins and always live with clean consciences forever.

How many times was Jesus baptized by John the Baptist to accept the sins of this world? He was baptized only once. By receiving baptism from John the Baptist only once, Jesus has forever washed away all the sins of this world perfectly. Why was He baptized only once? Because Jesus is the everlasting Son of God who had the power to accept all the sins of the world from its beginning to its end once for all with His baptism. As Jesus said, “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” He is God the eternal Being. Because Jesus is the Son of the forever living God, He could accomplish His eternal salvation once for all: He came to this world once; shouldered the sins of the world all at once by being baptized by John the Baptist once; was crucified and shed His blood once, and has thereby washed away all our sins all at once.

We must know the gospel truth of the water and the Spirit and believe in Jesus as the Savior. It is by being baptized once that Jesus has washed away the sins of the world. Your sins were passed onto Jesus once for all when He was baptized. By thus being baptized once, Jesus fulfilled all the righteousness of God that blots out the sins of the world. You must realize that all your sins were passed onto Jesus through His baptism. And you must believe this. You have nothing to lose from believing this. It is by our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that we can receive the everlasting remission of our sins.

If you find yourselves asking Jesus to forgive your sins everyday, then you should know that you are not yet born again. And you have to understand the gospel truth of the water and the Spirit, and you must believe in Jesus as your true Savior all over again according to this gospel. Pastors throughout the world, who have misunderstood the baptism of Jesus, must also believe in Him all over again. Many pastors do not have the proper understanding of the gospel of the water and the Spirit that has washed away their sins. How, then, do you think it would be possible for them to help others to receive the remission of sin, when they themselves have not received it? If, by any chance, you have been pretending to be holy only with the deeds and appearance of your flesh even as your hearts remain sinful, then you are merely hypocritical religionists and the children of destruction. People will not be able to receive the remission of sin with your help.

However, your souls can be freed from all your sins when you can discern the truth of salvation from the false religions of the world with the faith that knows and believes in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Only when you properly understand the gospel of the water and the Spirit, God’s Word of life, and believe in it properly in your hearts, can all your sins be washed away. Yet countless people still remain oblivious to the fact that the sins of the world were passed onto Jesus when He was baptized by John. Therefore, you yourselves must first humbly accept the gospel of the water and the Spirit into you hearts by believing in it. Jesus said, “For thus, it is thus fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). Jesus fulfilled all the righteousness of God when He was baptized. Through this baptism that He received, Jesus accepted all the sins of the world. With this baptism, all your sins were also accepted by Jesus.

Are you not the people of this world? Of course you are. Are your sins not included in the sins of the world? Of course, they are. Once you realize this, you can be delivered through the truth that Jesus shouldered all your sins by being baptized. To realize that you are sinners bound to be condemned for your sins is the stepping-stone that leads you to realize that your only Savior is Christ alone.

Have you come into Christ? Or are you still standing outside Christ? You must clearly know where exactly you stand. You are the people of this world. Were all your sins then passed onto Jesus or not? They were. Do you then admit that those Christians who say, “Lord, I’m still a sinner,” are not the born-again saints? In spite of believing in Jesus, they do not understand that our sins were passed onto Jesus through His baptism, and as a result they rely only on the blood of the Cross and are suffering everyday, asking the Lord to forgive their sins.

However, what did the Apostle Paul tell us? He told us, “Rejoice always,pray without ceasing,in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). So, if we wail and cling to the Lord constantly asking Him to forgive our sins, all that we are doing is only blaspheming His baptism and bloodshed even as we profess to believe in Him. This kind of faith is only an insult to Jesus.



Do All of Us Believe in the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit?

Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. All our sins were passed onto Jesus at that time once for all. Accepting the sins of the world through His baptism, Jesus then shed His blood and died on the Cross. And He rose from the dead in three days and now sits at the right hand of the throne of God.

It is imperative that we first reach the correct understanding of whether or not Jesus took away the sins of the world, including your sins, when He was baptized. By understanding the gospel of the water and the Spirit and believing in it, we must respond to the salvation of God. We must respond to what God did for us, saying, “That’s right.” When the Bible tells us that the Lord took away all the sins of the world by being baptized, we must abandon our own thoughts and respond to this by believing the Word as it is. Had the Lord not taken away your sins through His baptism, then His bloodshed on the Cross would have been all in vain. We must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit with our hearts. The Lord has completely blotted out all your sins of the world.

Faith and salvation do not depend on your own efforts. Your salvation from sin is depends on whether or not you have the faith that believes in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that Jesus has given us.

Do you now recognize that the gospel of the water and the Spirit is the only true gospel, and do you now want to admit this truth in your heart? Then, you must confess as the following: “Lord, to this day, I had not known that You shouldered the sins of the world once for all by being baptized; I had misunderstood and misbelieved. But I thank You for making me realize, even now, that I had misunderstood Your salvation. Now that I have come to understand and know the truth of the water and the Spirit, I believe in it and thank You for it.”

You, too, must now understand the gospel of the water and the Spirit, realize that it is for none other than yourselves, and accept it into your hearts as such. Always acknowledging salvation as it is in your hearts is what faith is about, and this is the faith that is based on the correct understanding of Jesus, one that enables you to receive Him into your hearts. And believing in this truth is the way for you to become God’s own children, the very faith that remits you from all your sins. What is your understanding of the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and how exactly do you believe in it?

Our Lord said, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). We must recognize the gospel truth of the water and the Spirit as it is. This is the faith that believes in God. He has saved us from the sins of the world with His water and blood. Because He has saved us from the sins of the world with the water and the Spirit, those who truly believe this before God will indeed be born again.



Are You Still Debtors?

Jesus said in John 3 that unless one is born again of water and the Spirit, he can neither go to the Kingdom of Heaven, nor see it. Being born again of water and the Spirit is only possible when we believe in the baptism of Jesus, His blood on the Cross, and the truth that He is the Son of God and our Savior. Do you believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit?

Let’s assume here that a man has accumulated half a million dollars in debt. Interest alone is too much for him to bear. For ordinary working people, this kind of debt is beyond their means to settle. Nor could this man pay back his debt, and so he just went bankrupt and disappeared. But even he flees to somewhere else and works hard trying to pay off his debt, would he really be able to pay even the interest, let alone the principal amount? His creditor, meanwhile, goes after his co-signer to get the money back, but the co-singer has no way to pay back, either. So the creditor, being rather unscrupulous, goes after his parents, making all kinds of threat to force them to pay back the debt. The parents can’t stand this, and so they pay off the creditor, and they get a receipt from him in return.

Having paid the creditor off, the father then starts to look for the son, who no doubt would be suffering both in body and mind. He looked for his son everywhere for 10 years, but he still could not find him. One day, after 12 years went by, the son finally returns, having saved some money. He first goes to his father and says, “I’ve saved $400,000, but I am still short for $100,000. Can you lend me this amount? I’ll stay with you and work hard to pay you back.” The father then embraced his son in tears, saying to him, “I’ve already paid off all your debt! You have nothing to worry anymore! How much you must have suffered all this time!” Telling the son that his debt was paid off, the father shows him the receipt.

The son is overwhelmed with gratefulness, but at the same time he feels as if he had suffered needlessly, thinking to himself, “For the past 12 years, I had lived my life as a deadbeat, never having a moment of peace, when in fact I didn’t have to. I had lived as a deadbeat when I wasn’t one. I just didn’t know. All my sufferings have been in vain!”

Dear fellow Christians, those who are trying to receive the forgiveness of their sins on their own, even as Jesus has already remitted all their sins through His baptism and Cross, are still tormented with the problem of sin, just like this son.

By being baptized, Jesus has already blotted out our sins. He already took away all our sins by being baptized, bore all the condemnation of sin by shedding His blood on the Cross, and has thereby saved us. Do you now realize this? That you were bound by your sins is because you did not know that Jesus took away all your sins when He was baptized. Jesus indeed took all your sins away. Believe this.



“There Is No Longer an Offering for Sin”

Let us now turn to Hebrews 10:1-18: “For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins.But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year.For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.

Therefore, when He came into the world, He said:

‘Sacrifice and offering You did not desire,

But a body You have prepared for Me.

In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin

You had no pleasure.

Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come-

In the volume of the book it is written of Me-

To do Your will, O God.’”

Previously saying, ‘Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them’ (which are offered according to the law),then He said, ‘Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.’ He takes away the first that He may establish the second.By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God,from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified. But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before, ‘This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,’ then He adds, ‘Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.’ Now where there is remission of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.”

The passage here says that the Law is “a shadow of the good things to come.” Just as passing yearly sins with the laying on of hands in the Old Testament was real, so was it real that Jesus came to this earth and took upon all our sins once for all by being baptized by John. The Old Testament is a shadow of the New Testament. Shadows can exists only when there are actual objects that cast them.

Like this, God’s salvation manifested in the sacrificial system of the Old Testament was realized through the ministry of Jesus Christ. In the Old Testament, countless lambs, goats, and pigeons were slaughtered and offered to God. But it was not possible for the blood of bulls and goats to completely take away sins. The everlasting remission of sin had to be fulfilled by Jesus the High Priest of Heaven. This is why our Lord came to this world, was baptized, and shed His blood for us.

Referring to Jesus, the Book of Hebrew declares that He is the High Priest of Heaven. In the Old Testament, it was the High Priest who remitted the sins of the Israelites by offering sacrifices to God on their behalf. Like this, our Lord came as the High Priest of Heaven. “Behold, I have come-In the volume of the book it is written of Me-To do Your will, O God.” Jesus came to do the will of God the Father.

What do you think is the will of God the Father? It is to save all human beings from their sins. Actually, there was no human being on this planet who could do the will of God the Father. There was One who could do the will of the Father, and this was none other than Jesus. Because Jesus accepted all the sins of mankind and blotted them all out in obedience to the will of God the Father, the Father can now accept those who believe in His Son as His own children. This was the will of God the Father. His will, in other words, was to blot out our sins.

Following the will of God the Father, Jesus came to this earth, took upon all the sins of the world by being baptized, shed His blood and died on the Cross, and has thereby given us new life. This is why our Lord said in Hebrews 10:9, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.”

Verse 9 continues to say, “He takes away the first that He may establish the second.” The sacrificial system of the Law could not give eternal salvation to mankind. So God has given everlasting salvation to those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, not the Law. Can we wash away our sins by doing some charitable works? Or by giving prayers of repentance? Or by giving large offerings to our churches? None of these can wash away our sins. We simply cannot receive the remission of our sins through our own good deeds. This is why our Lord came to this earth to be baptized and shed His blood.

Hebrews 10:10 says, “By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” By being baptized once, dying on the Cross once, and rising from the dead again at once, Jesus has become the Savior of those of us who believe in Him. Dear Christians, it is imperative for you to realize that you cannot receive the remission of your sins through the Law. But once you believe in the water and the blood of Jesus, and that He is God Himself, you will all be able to enter Heaven.

To make all our sins disappear, Jesus offered the everlasting sacrifice with His body by being baptized and shedding His blood. By coming to this earth, being baptized, dying on the Cross, and rising from the dead again, He has become the eternal Savior. Were your sins forever passed onto Jesus when He was baptized? Is this why Jesus said, “It is finished,” as He passed away on the Cross? Has God placed His law of the Spirit of life in our hearts and blotted out all our sins? Is your faith placed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? By believing in this gospel, are you now righteous? Or, do you still remain sinners?

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You are all righteous. Before hearing the Word, you were clearly all sinners, but after hearing it, you have now become righteous, and have put on the new man who is renewed even in knowledge (Colossians 3:10). How can we then be baptized into Jesus? By believing in Jesus’ righteous ministry with our hearts, we can be baptized with Him, die with Him, and be brought to life with Him. This is the elementary principle of faith that believes with the heart.

Dear fellow Christians, let us all realize that there is no other way to enter Heaven but by faith; let us all understand and believe in this baptism of Jesus and His blood, instead of fronting our own righteousness; and by doing so, let us all be washed from all our sins.

With my faith, I give my boundless thanks to God before the gospel of the water and the Spirit that He has given us through our Lord. It is my sincerest hope and prayer that each and every one of you would also now come to know and understand, without fail, the gospel truth of the water and the Spirit revealed in Matthew 3:13-17, and believe in it with your hearts, so that you would all become God’s own people.

May all His blessings be with you!

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