Romans 6:3-11 "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, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. 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. We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the sinful body might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. For he who has died is freed from sin. But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him. For we know that Christ being raised from the dead will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. The death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus."
If Jesus were only a great teacher, it would still be appropriate to have a day to remember his death, we remember many lesser things. If Jesus died for our sins, we should remember that, even if we donít understand or comprehend why. But Jesus death is not an "if", it is real, but more than that it should have a deep personal association with each and every one of us, indeed with each and every person on the face of the earth.
We know that the wages of sin is death, but sometimes we forget that Jesus was without sin, he had no guilt, he had done nothing deserving of death. Jesus placed himself under the load of our sin, all our sin, he took all the guilt, all the blame all the punishment on himself, and suffered in our place. And what had we done to deserve such a sacrifice? Nothing! By our words, by our deeds, by our actions, we had proved ourselves spiritually blind dead and enemies of God. We didnít just sin once, we sinned much, daily. There was nothing good in us, no merit or worthiness. And yet Jesus died for our sin. We might not ever understand why God should pay such a price, for us. But understand or not, the price was paid, Jesus suffered, died and was buried for us.
But that is not the end of it all, it continues to this day. For all those who are baptized into Christ, are baptized into he death. You see, baptism is not simple water only, but it is water comprehended in Godís Word and promise. At baptism not only are all of our sins washed away, but we are born again, given a new and everlasting life. At baptism we receive the victory over sin, over death and over the devil, they no longer have power over us, not because we are so powerful, but because in Baptism we are united with Christ in his death, and all these things are put to death in us, and having died to sin, death, and the devil, we rise to a new life, which is ours because we are in Christ.
This day we consider the price that was paid, that this promise of God might be given to us, and to all, for God would have all men saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. This day we remember Jesus suffering and death for our sins, and considering this great sacrifice, we set aside the old way, and old thinking, and we rise in the new life God has given us in baptism, and rise with a renewed mind, having one hope, one goal, one destination, one purpose - which is to be with our Lord in the glory he has prepared for those who love him.
And it is not merely once a year that we remember what Jesus did to give us life, forgiveness and peace, but every day we remember our baptism, and every day we are united with him in his death, so that we may daily drown the old sinful nature, and that daily we may rise to the new life which is ours in Christ.
So it is that as we remember, we consider ourselves dead to sin and alive in Christ. AS we remember, we also tell the story of how he died once for all, and we share with all the good news, so that they too may share in the forgiveness life and salvation that is ours in Christ. It might have been long ago and far away, but it is not distant to us, for it is what has made us what we are, the children of God by grace through faith, for Jesus sake.