United with Christ
January 10, 2021

Today we celebrate the Baptism of Jesus. Such a day is also a good time to
remember our own Baptism. In Baptism, we are buried with Christ. We are
united with Him in a death like His. In Baptism, we are also raised to new life
as re-creations. As we are united to Christ in death, we will also be united with
Him in resurrection when He returns and raises the dead.

“Baptized into Your Name Most Holy” [LSB 590]

1 Baptized into Your name most holy, O Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
I claim a place, though weak and lowly, Among Your saints, Your chosen host.
Buried with Christ and dead to sin, Your Spirit now shall live within.

2 My loving Father, here You take me, To be henceforth Your child and heir.
My faithful Savior, here You make me, The fruit of all Your sorrows share.
O Holy Spirit, comfort me, When threat'ning clouds around I see.

3 My faithful God, You fail me never; Your promise surely will endure.
O cast me not away forever,  If words and deeds become impure.
Have mercy when I come defiled; Forgive, lift up, restore Your child.

4 All that I am and love most dearly, Receive it all, O Lord, from me.
Let me confess my faith sincerely; Help me Your faithful child to be!
Let nothing that I am or own, Serve any will but Yours alone.

Father in heaven, at the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River, You proclaimed
Him Your beloved Son and anointed Him with the Holy Spirit. Make all who
are baptized in His name faithful in their calling as Your children and inheritors
with Him of everlasting life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives
and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

EPISTLE Romans 6:1–11

What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2
By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Do you not know
that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his
death? 4 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. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death
like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We
know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might
be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For
one who has died has been set free from sin. 8 Now if we have died with
Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 We know that Christ, being
raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over
him. 10 For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives
he lives to God. 11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and
alive to God in Christ Jesus.

HOLY GOSPEL Mark 1:4–11
4 John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness, and proclaiming a baptism of
repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5 And all the country of Judea and all
Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river
Jordan, confessing their sins. 6 Now John was clothed with camel's hair and
wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. 7 And he
preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the strap of
whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. 8 I have baptized you
with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” 9 In those days Jesus
came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10
And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being
torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. 11 And a voice came
from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

       “How can we who died to sin still live in it?” This question that is posed
can be confusing if the Gospel is not understood.  Sometimes Christians
question their faith when they still think wrong thoughts or still do wrongs things
meaning they still sin. What is not understood is that having faith in Jesus,
being a Christian, does not make us perfect.  We are still imperfect human
beings and we still make mistakes. The difference is now we know our need
for forgiveness and the need to follow Christ rather than just ourselves.  We
have died to sin meaning we recognize through faith and God’s Word that
Jesus paid the price of our sin.  We are forgiven. We do not serve sin any
longer even though we are still sinful.  To live in sin is to ignore Christ.  Living
in sin contradicts faith in Christ.  This is why faith in Christ each day is
important because we need His forgiveness each day as well. “For one who
has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we
believe that we will also live with him.”  By faith we have died with Him
meaning our sin is paid for and so by faith we shall also live with Him now and
eternally.  We can now say no to sin and yes to our Lord.  We still make
mistakes but that is not where we live.  By faith we live in Christ.

LORD’S PRAYER Matthew 6:9–13
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy
will be done on earth as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and
forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and
lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom
and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

The Lord bless you and keep you.
The Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you.
The Lord look upon you with favor and  give you peace. Amen.

Down loadable copy click here
Devotion 1/10/2021