- The Gospel is the Roof of our Household of Faith: It's all about Jesus(IRL): The Way, The Truth, The Life- John 14:6
- The Gospel is Family on Mission: The relationship between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit teaches us that we cannot be disciples, build community, or even "do life" on our own- we need to be in relationship with others- John 5:19&20
- The Gospel is the Center of our Identity: The Scriptures show Jesus as only being baptized once, as a follower of God. Likewise, the Gospels and the book of Acts record Jesus and His disciples baptizing believers, and commanding us to do the same. Here's how that Gospel Identity is "pictured" in baptism...
We begin our journey of discipleship (represented by a "spiritual house"), by highlighting these truths:
Gospel Identity: Children of the Father- Father with Children
During our baptism in water as believers, we are given our identity as Children of the Father ("I baptize you in the Name of the Father..."). Being baptized in the Name of the Father identifies us as God's children/family. Our Father God lavishes us with His love, and calls us His children (see 1 John 3:1). What an identity!
GOSPEL IDENTITY: Servants of the Servant King- The Crown
Additionally, during our baptism in water as believers, we are given our identity as Servants of the King ("I baptize you in the Name of the Father, and of the Son..."). Baptism in Jesus' Name identifies us with Jesus, The Servant King, and includes us as Servants of the King. We serve His Bride as His hands and feet, we serve His creation, and we serve His purposes on the earth. In that process of service, He shares His heart with us, and calls us His friend (see John 15:15).
Gospel Identity: Spirit-filled AMBASSADORS- DOVE OF PEACE
Finally, during our baptism in water as believers, we are given our identity as Ambassadors of Peace ("I baptize you in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit..."). Being baptized in the name of the Holy Spirit identifies us as an Ambassador sent to represent God’s kingdom, particularly to those who are "lost". As Paul writes in 2 Cor 5:20 "So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!”" What a rich identity we have- we get to speak for the Creator of the Universe and invite His lost children to come back home to relationship with Him!
the 3 circles- The Centrality of the Gospel, and our identity
You will learn about the "3 Circles", and actually have many opportunities to draw it out yourself during each of our weekly meet ups. It's vital to understand how The Gospel (represented by these 3 Circles) is at the center of all we know about God, all we do on behalf of God, and all we look forward to seeing completed in God's timing for the whole world (see John 3:16).
The 3 Circles– God's Perfect Design (circle 1, upper left) was corrupted by sin (the arrow between Circles 1&2), which led to brokenness (Circle 2, upper right). To break out of the cycle of Sin and brokenness, we must Repent and Believe (the 2nd arrow, connecting Circle 2 with Circle 3) that Jesus came down from heaven, died on a cross, and rose again (Circle 3, bottom center), enabling us to grow in our understanding of God's Perfect Design and continue to pursue it (arrow 3, connecting Circle 3 with Circle 1) to bring us back to God's Perfect Design, and share that sense of liberty with others. Ask- “Where are you in these circles?”