No Longer a Slave

Exploring the eternal importance and meaning of Christian baptism.

Matt Stokes
Sep 13, 2020    35m
What does the Bible say about the eternal importance and meaning of Christian baptism? By exploring scriptures from the Book of Romans, we get a detailed look at water baptism and how it changes the life of a believer. Video recorded at Ocean City, New Jersey.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Matt Stokes: 00:00 Good morning everyone, my name's Matt Stokes. I'm the lead pastor here at coastal, and it's great to see you because today is a really special day being that it's baptism Sunday. I am hoping that we're going to see all of you at four o'clock, 59th street beach.

Matt Stokes: 00:15 So I was ready to finish the book of Romans, and just felt pressed in my heart to just give a message on baptism, because it's amazing to see how many people will rise up sometimes on a baptism Sunday, and just feel pressed as well to make a decision to go public with their faith. So right now we are at 40 people, which is pretty exciting. Yes, it's something that really gets thrilled about in the midst of a pandemic that we would still have 40 people getting baptized, because that also tells you something about how many people are coming to Christ, even in the midst of this as well. Whether it's people that have been online, or people here in the gatherings, even Thursday night, we had people making decisions to surrender their lives to Christ, which is just amazing just last Thursday night.

Matt Stokes: 01:00 So let's get excited about that, and open your Bibles to Romans chapter 6, if you will. I want to say hello to all of you who are watching online, thank you so much for tuning in, logging on wherever you are. You can open your app as well, there's study questions there. You can follow along with me, I'm going to read Romans chapter 6, just the first five verses of what we're going to cover. And you're going to see, I believe, a significance when it comes to the concept of baptism.

Matt Stokes: 01:30 So if I have your attention, let me start with these first words. God bless the reading of your Word. Romans chapter 6, starting with the very first words, "Know ye not." Now you can stop right there just for a moment, and look at this, he puts it in what's called the reverse emphatic negative. In other words, he makes a really strong emphasis by actually the construction of the syntax of the sentence. In other words, what he's saying in modern day language is, don't you know this? Do you see that, it's strong? "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." The word for is there, for means with a view to, or with the substantiation of that truth. "For..." Watch this now, "For if we have been planted..." Right? This is a powerful word, and I wish we had the time to spend on it. In the Greek, this word planted here, it actually refers to two trees that are planted together and their roots are, are intermingled. Listen to this, their roots are so integrated in such a way that then this grows up together to become one tree out of the two trees that were planted. That's the word being used here to describe you and Jesus, that's pretty cool, it's also very powerful. "For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection." Hey, don't you know this? That's what Paul is saying, don't you know this? You've been, if you've been baptized with Christ, you're baptized into his death. And if you're baptized into his death, as he rose, so shall you rise.

Matt Stokes: 03:37 John chapter 13, one of my favorite verses in scripture, and one of the shortest. Jesus says this, "As I live, so shall ye live." "As I live, so shall ye live." Here again as I live, so shall ye live. So again, here's one of the most important concepts connected to baptism. Perhaps you've heard it before, the word baptism actually comes from the Greek word bapto. Bapto means to dip, to submerge, or immerse. By the way, if you're here and you want to be sprinkled today, instead of immersed, there's a word for that theologically, they call it effusion. Maybe if you're familiar with that from other churches where they actually sprinkle you like this, there is nothing unbiblical about that. In Hebrews chapter 10, it talks about having our hearts sprinkled to have a clear conscience from guilt. In First Peter, it talks about being chosen by the foreknowledge of God, and sanctified by the Spirit by the sprinkling of his blood. And so there are some, in certain denominations, that see that. Also it's a very common Old Testament ritual that when they would cleanse something, they would actually take the blood of an innocent sacrifice, and they would dip it in hyssop branch. Which is sort of like a cypress branch, if you're familiar with your bushes. And it would actually catch the blood, and then they would sprinkle it, and that would be a symbolic of a cleansing, if you will. So here in the same situation, effusion, whether you're sprinkled or whether you're dunked, let the symbolism is there. There are some of us here that have a sickness, or our immune system, of course, may be compromised. We're talking about that so much today in our communities. Goodness, if that's your preference and you can't be submerged, believe me, we do both. The idea is that you're coming into the water to proclaim your faith, and God's got that. But the word bapto, where we get baptized, literally means to dip, or to immerse, or to submerge.

Matt Stokes: 05:37 Again, a piece of the back history, and the reason that it says that, that this is the term that's used. Is they would take a garment back in ancient times, and they would take that garment and they would dip it into a dye. And when they would dip it, it went down into that VAT. When they would bring it up, they would hold it up, it would be purple now, or over here they would dip it and it would be blue now. And it would come out, and that garment, listen, this is really important concept, that garment would be identified with the color into which it was dipped. In fact, the garment was now identified with the color and that process was called bapto. And what happened over time is the word baptism, this is fascinating, the word baptism becomes synonymous with the word identification. That's so important to understand when you want to understand the significance of baptism, it means to identify. Do you remember when James and John asked Jesus, can we sit on your left and on your right? And he said, you don't know what you're asking? Are you ready? Are you prepared to be baptized with the baptism, with which I shall be baptized? Watch this, let's tweak it a little bit and say, do you know what you're asking? Are you prepared to identify with the identification, which I'm about to be identified? Do you see this?

Matt Stokes: 06:57 So watch, as I read again this piece from Romans, and what he's saying is don't, you know, as many are as identified with Christ, they'll also be identified with his death as well. That's what it says here in verse 3, identification, that's what it means. As Christ was crucified, and died, and was buried, so we too are identifying with that burial. That is one of the essentials of New Testament water baptism. One of the essentials of New Testament water baptism, is this concept of identifying with his death. And as you go into that water and you go under that water, what do you do when you're under that water? Absolutely nothing, you're not breathing, you're dead. That's the symbolism, you can't do anything. The identification is that you are now lifeless, in that moment you died, and that's what you're identifying with in the death of Jesus Christ. Now, when you come out of that water, it's also symbolic. It's symbolic that you have died, and now you have newness of life when you come forth from that water. So the explanation is this, just as Christ went into the grave and he rose to newness of life and the resurrection. So to, I am proclaiming that in this world, I have a death to this world. I'm dying to this lower, I'm dying to this linear, I'm dying to this natural world. And now I'm becoming alive in Christ, alive through Christ, alive by Christ. That is the second essential of New Testament water baptism. one that you have died with him under that water, and two that you are now raised, as it says here in Romans chapter 6, "You're raised to newness..." Listen to this expression, like who doesn't want this, "Newness of life."

Matt Stokes: 08:57 So in light of that, that's what baptism is. I want to ask the question to you, as I'm asking to myself and need to ask myself every day, what are you doing? What are you doing to show the world that I'm dying to an old life, and I'm becoming now alive in Christ, and I'm living a new life? You know, again, coming from the Catholic church, they call this living out your baptism. If you don't know what the confirmation is, some of you have been confirmed. In fact, some of you have been confirmed, and you had a confirmation, and you don't even know what confirmation is. Confirmation is, in the Catholic theology, is that when you were baptized as a baby, you didn't know you were being baptized because you baby. But your confirmation is, I want to confirm that what happened when I was a little baby, you know, by the priest, and they usually sprinkle, I want to confirm that that's real, I want to confirm that by living it out in my life. And so when we go through confirmation classes and courses, it's really a pathway, it's a vehicle that the Catholic church uses to try to have a young man or woman grow up and become a person who lives out their infant baptism. I've talked about infant baptism before, and we can talk about it again some other time.

Matt Stokes: 10:13 But right now, I'm just trying to get you to answer the question, as much as I'm asking myself, what are you doing to show the world that I died to my old life and I'm alive in Christ? Someone might say, well, I got confirmed, you know, when I was 13. Okay, how about today? How about tomorrow? How about every single day of our lives? What are we doing to communicate, to proclaim, to declare, to confirm, I've died to myself and I'm alive in Christ? As Paul says, "I've been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the life that I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and died for me."

Matt Stokes: 10:53 Now, track me now on this, baptism is an expression of faith. Baptism is an expression of faith, in the same way, baptism is an expression of faith in the same way, that a word expresses an idea. What do you mean? I have an idea right now, but there's no words. There's no words, but normally, typically, ideally ideas are expressed in some form of words. Whether the idea is spoken, or the idea is written. I can have an idea, but really it's not expressed until words come out of my mouth, typically. And so it is the same with baptism. If you've got a pen, write it down. Baptism is an outward expression of an inward transformation. An outward expression of an inward transformation. It's a declaration of something that's taken place in my heart. I can believe, see what I'm saying, I can believe in the truth of baptism. The two essentials, the death of Christ and the resurrection of Christ. I can believe in the truths of baptism, but I have not expressed them until I go into that water and come out again, expressing what happened in my heart, in my soul, in my mind, in my spirit. When a person trusts Christ, he or she is incorporated with Christ, they are united with Christ, they are connected by Jesus Christ to something called newness of life.

Matt Stokes: 12:31 And if you're here today and you don't know Jesus Christ, we want to give you the opportunity to do that. To connect to Christ, and receive forever forgiveness, receive the hope of heaven, to lay down your sin and believe that Christ died on the cross for your sins and in your place, and he rose again on that third day, to show you that every promise he ever made is real and true for you. And if today you decide to embrace repentance and then this faith in Christ, that's a miracle. We would love to see you make that decision right now by the end of this gathering, and then see you in the waters of baptism. There's nothing more beautiful, and wonderful, and miraculous, than someone who's actually...I can see a friend of mine right here that made that decision, right, Bobby. He came, he prayed one day to ask Christ to be a savior. We locked arms, he prayed, Christ came into his life, and then moments later, he's on the beach in the water. Can you guys just celebrate my friend Bobby right here? I love you, and you're an inspiration to me. What does that include? First, it includes being united in his death, and his death becomes our death, His death becomes our death. And what happens is in baptism, that is a very bold, and a very vivid picture of that death.

Matt Stokes: 13:54 And then second, the apostle Paul goes on to say, the believers identification with Christ is also identified, also identified. Number two, here's the two points I'm making today, so let me drive them home. Number two is not only in his death, but logically, biblically, what follows is the believer also identifies with Jesus resurrection, with Jesus' life. Having died and then rose again with Christ, the believer should live a life that's new. It says that we raised to newness of life. Okay, wow, newness of life. What does that include? First it includes being united with Jesus death, and then it includes his resurrection.

Matt Stokes: 14:41 Let me illustrate it with you, and tell you here's my concern for today, and my challenge for you. Okay, we have 40 people that are confirmed baptized today, there may be more by the end of this service if God presses in your heart to make that choice today. 40 people signed up, if you include the summer Lake baptism that we did earlier, okay, that puts us at almost 60 people for the year. Which is remarkable in the midst of a pandemic. We even had one named Jacob, who got baptized all by himself, out here in the Bay, because he was going back to the university and he didn't want to miss being baptized. So we surrounded him, and 30 people came and applauded one man going into the water because he wanted to proclaim his faith in Jesus Christ. Some of you, Jacob, if you're watching, we salute you.

Matt Stokes: 15:33 Some of you are here today, you're going to receive this invitation for the very first time to make this decision, to receive Jesus Christ, to surrender your life to Christ, and receive that newness of life, and we're going to see you out in the water. But here's the point I want to make now, come with me on this. How would you feel if when you came out into the water, we held you down under a long time, like really long. Like how about longer than it's funny, because sometimes it is funny. If we're not familiar with the person, a lot of times the elders will surround that person, and will ask them how they came to Christ. And in that moment, there are some things that people tell us and they can be some pretty spicy stories about their days before they came to Christ. So jokingly sometimes we'll say, well, we're going to have to hold you under a little longer. Ha-ha, okay. And then people chuckle, they wonder if we're kidding, and then we pray, and then they go under. Now what if, when you went under, you got held a little longer, and longer. And all of a sudden you opened your eyes, and you saw an elder shaking his head like this. And you said yourself, wait, wait, I thought we were kidding, I thought this was a joke, I thought it was funny. Bloop. And then it starts getting tragic.

Matt Stokes: 17:09 That's really weird, why are you even saying that? I'm saying that because that's how some of us are living. What? Because some of us are only living the first half of our baptism. It's as if we've gone under the water, but we haven't come back up. It's as if some of us are believers, and we're living somewhere between Good Friday over here, and Resurrection Sunday over here. Do you understand what I'm saying? Say, yes. Really? I'm saying it because what really you're declaring is, I'm saying I want to be cleansed by Christ, I want to be washed by his blood, the shed blood of Christ on the cross. His death is my death. There was an exchange that took place, and I laid down my sin and I said, please give me your sacrifice, please give me your sinless life. Do you know what that is? That's being set free from the penalty of sin, that's Romans chapter 5. A glorious chapter, a chapter that says, "Now therefore being justified by faith, we now have peace with God through Jesus Christ Our Lord." That's a verse worth celebrating, see that's Romans chapter 5.

Matt Stokes: 18:23 But there are some of us that never make it to Romans chapter 6, Romans chapter 6 says, "How can we, now being dead to sin, live any longer there in." He dealt with the penalty, but we're not living in the power. Let me say it again, he dealt with the penalty, but we're not living in the power. So we thank him for the forgiveness, but we're not experiencing the effectual active life of a spiritual, genuine, authentic believer. And we're living like we're really saying, I haven't been risen from the dead, there is no victorious spiritual life, there is no newness of life. The love of Christ is not flowing forth from my heart, I'm not experiencing the power of the Holy Spirit. I don't have the peace that passes all understanding. I don't have the joy that's unspeakable or inexpressible, I don't have that joy that Jesus said he wanted to give to his disciple. And look at my story, and you look at Christian culture today, and I'm saying, how many of us are saying, listen, how many of us are saying thanks for our salvation? And then we say, Hey God, I got it, I'm good from here. And you may come, and you may say a prayer and I hope you do pray a prayer of repentance and faith today, but I'm saying that's just getting started. Like some people think that that's the finish line, like that's the victory. It is the victory, okay, it is the victory in heaven. But as far as earth, you just started the battle, you just enlisted. I mean, the battle's already won in heaven, but you just enlisted in the army.

Matt Stokes: 20:03 How many of us are saying thank you for my salvation? And then, Hey God, I got it, I'm good from here. Instead of experiencing God's power and authority on my life, and in my life, I go on, I try just to...I call myself a Christian now, but I just go on living like I'm not, solving problems my own way. So I'm going to this psychiatrist, and I'm going to this psychologist, and I'm going to this psychoanalyst, and this psychotherapist, and this psycho killer, [inaudible]. And I go on to session after session, and I'm staring into space, and I'm listening to my meditations and my special music somewhere. Somewhere between my yoga positions, and my self-help books, I'm saying, God, I got this. Thanks for my salvation, I've got this. And I've got nothing against therapy, I endorse therapy. If you have a therapy session this week, keep it. Thank you. But if you want to know that you're significant, if you want to know that you have value and purpose and meaning, and that you have a destiny, if you want to know that you're special, you don't have to look any further than the cross of Jesus Christ.

Matt Stokes: 21:11 Paul says in second Corinthians, the reason that you can know that you have purpose and meaning, and that you have a destiny that you're special. The reason you're special is that Jesus loves you, and he died on the cross to save you, and bless you, and give you a life, a newness of life in him. He paid an infinite price, an infinite price to actually, are you ready, remake you, reconcile you, restore you, redeem you, remake you as a new creation so that old things can pass away. And behold, all things can become new. Philippians says, so that you can have the power to forget what's behind, and to reach forth for what's ahead. You've got the power. You've got the power and you have the authority in Christ, right now, to live a new life. Are you living it? Are you embracing it? You've got to know that right here, so do I. I'm saying praise God that he dealt with the penalty in Romans 5. But there comes a point in the life of a believer where you've got to get past the penalty in 5, as beautiful as that is, get out of the penalty and get into the power. Praise God, he dealt with the penalty, but you've got to accept the challenge to get past the penalty praise, and get into the power.

Matt Stokes: 22:39 Most of you know, I have orthopedic issues, two spinal procedures, double hip replacements. So I was required for several years to do Aqua therapy, and so I spent several weeks after one of my surgeries at the Ocean City Community Center, I was at 17th and Simpson. And if you've ever been to that pool, it's really nice. In fact, on the far side of the pool, there's this machine, this apparatus, this structure with a chair in the middle. And you don't have to be an engineer to realize what this is, it actually helps people that have experienced a crippling, whether from birth, or from illness, or something tragic, a tragic incident, it helps them get into the pool for therapy. And I'll never forget the first time I saw a man that was suffering from a crippling, from something. And coming to the pool, his wife obviously skilled, she knew what to do. She must have understood, or I knew this wasn't her first time. This man must have been in a wheelchair for a long time, because he had a very strong upper body, but obviously there was atrophy that set in. And I don't know if it was something tragic, but something crippled him in a particular way. And I watched her help him get out of that chair, and get into this other chair. And then the chair got maneuvered into a certain way in which she was able to get him into a position in that chair, and then she helped him with that mechanism and it lowered him down into the water. And so I'm doing my laps, but you know that scene where you're holding onto the wall and like out of my peripheral, I'm watching this. And maybe I shouldn't, maybe it's rude, maybe it's inappropriate, but I just couldn't look away. I had to see this. She lowered him into the water, and this is what I saw. As he came down into the water, this like enormous smile just rode right across his face. And as he started to go down further and further and was released from the chair, he started to laugh. As she lowered him down into that water, he started to laugh, and then he started to move around in that water from one side to the other. And then from that side and then back again, and he's holding onto the side, but he's walking and he's moving around and he's laughing and he's moving all around, walking around that water, smiling and laughing as if no one else was even there. It was almost as if there were only two objects that existed in the world at that moment, and that was that man and that water. Listen, please, because I believe in the core of my being, as someone needs to hear this today, Jesus Christ is that freedom water for the believer, for the genuine follower of Christ, for the person who calls himself a Christian. When you step into that water and you see, you experience, you know, and you start living like he did, he had a whole new life in that water. When he was in the context of being in that water, he had a whole new life, he was experiencing freedom, liberation. That's what you see, when you're in Christ, you're like that man in that water, you have a new capacity, you've got a new ability, you've got liberation, you've got emancipation from the slavery of whatever was crippling you. And if you agree with the proclamation in my illustration, say, amen.

Matt Stokes: 26:27 Let me tell you something I hope is equally as impacting, when you get out of that water, the crippling effects of reality return. And as I consider, and calculate, and contemplate, what it really means to live a life, live a life in victory, to live a life of strength, and determination, perseverance, and power in Christ, to live in newness of life. I'll ask you how well do you understand the new nature that you have in Christ? Please don't miss the question in a multitude of words. How well do you understand the new nature that you have in Christ? I have to look at my new nature that I have in Christ, and I need to spin to my sin, I need to spin to my sin nature and say, you are not my master. I need to turn, and so to you, turn to your sin nature and say, you are not my master. I can say that to my eyes when they're tempted to look at something I shouldn't and say, you are not my master. I can say that to my mouth when there's something that I want to say that I shouldn't say. Because my tendency in my humanity, if you're like me, because we're all made of the same stuff, I want to fight fire with fire. That's just who I am, that's me. Hopefully you don't see me, I'm hoping every day you see the Christ in me. But the part of me called me, called self, called the flesh wants to fight fire with fire. I've told you before, I'm from Philly. Man, you push me with your hand, I'm coming back with a baseball bat, or a shovel, depending on what someone has in their closest garage.

Matt Stokes: 28:20 My son, Jesse, he was born in Philly, we moved down here, he was just a boy. He was just a boy, not even in first grade, and I was a teacher at a school, not far from here, a school that most of us would know if I said the name of it. And I had school yard duty, and I was able to have the joy of watching my son in the school yard as they're all hanging out, and I had school yard duty. Now some kid pushed him in the little school yard section that's fenced in, and in my mind it took me right back to the alley behind my house, Oxford and Levick. And I'm wondering what's he going to do? Well, he pushed the kid back, and the other kid gets up and he gets into like, what I call, I don't know what you call it. He got into what I call push posture. As a parent, I'm watching this and he's ready to push him again. And I'm like, oh, what's my godly man going to do. And I watched him get pushed again, and he walked away and I said, thank you Lord. And he went and picked up a stick, and I'm telling you, it was like something out of a movie in slow motion. I'm like trying to get that kid gate lock thing open to get to him like, nooooo, and I'm running towards him. And he doesn't come over the top, he comes from the, he plays tennis, he came from the side, right? And like, I literally like reached out and grabbed his wrist, and I'm like, hey, little buddy, that's not what we're going to do. Don't be overcome with evil, overcome evil with good. And Jesse doesn't even look at me, he looks at the kid and says, I'm going to make you cry. And I'm thinking to myself, oh my gosh, it's in his DNA. Where did he learn this? So now when you realize your new nature, it gives you a boldness to look at your sin nature and say, you're not my master, I can make another choice. I'm a new creation, I have newness of life. I can say it to my heart when it's tempted to doubt, when it's tempted to be discouraged. Look, there's always going to be a continual wrestling for the believer, it's always going to be there. It starts at three, four, five years old, and then when you grow up, it never goes away. When you come to Christ, you have a new nature, you can make a new choice, but you're always going to struggle with it, that's what chapter 7 is about. Talk about it in Romans 5, and getting into 6. When you get into 7, you find Paul say, man, the things that I don't want to do, those are the things I do. And the things that I am doing, they're the things I wish I didn't do. I want to knock this guy's block off, oh God, I want to hug this guy. I mean, both things are there, I can't stand this guy, but Lord, I know you love this guy. Like there's a wrestling in those natures, it's all in there.

Matt Stokes: 31:21 But listen, here's the point, and I'm going to close with this. One of those natures, one of those propensities, one of those inclinations, is going to rule you. One of them, according to the scriptures, is going to reign over you. I'm saying, right here and right now, you've got to decide which one it's going to be. Is going to be the flesh, or is it going to be the spirit?. Is it going to be the old life, or the risen newness of life, Christ in you? One is dominating, sitting here right now, one of them is dominating you, you've got to decide which one is going to be from here forth. I'm going to challenge you this morning, I'm going to challenge you in this moment to consider which one it is, I'm going to dare you to make a choice to choose Christ.

Matt Stokes: 32:08 If you're here and you've never chosen Christ to be your savior, you've only got one nature, it's a sin nature, it's a carnal nature. And according to Romans, again, it says, "To be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace." Come to Christ today. The beautiful message of the gospel today is that you are more than forgiven, as beautiful as that is, he also gives you a brand new nature to live a new life. The beautiful message of the gospel is not only that you're forgiven, but you're no longer enslaved, you're no longer ensnared, you're no longer engulfed, you're no longer enveloped in your own fear, in your insecurity, in your bitterness, in your lust, in your anger, in your past, if you have Christ, if you don't, you're lost. This message is either meaningless to you, or it's the most meaningful message you've ever heard enter into your ears. That you can be forgiven of all your sin and make one right choice to choose Christ and receive that new nature, when you repent of all of that sin, and you move towards him in faith.

Matt Stokes: 33:21 And look, I'm not naive, I know that's easier for some people than it is for others. You might be looking at me right now, and I don't know in the course of these three gatherings and this message is going to be spoke, people are going to say, you don't know my life, you don't know my situation, you don't know what I'm about, you don't know the pain I've been through, you don't even know. No, I don't know. My heart goes out to some of you with sympathy and empathy because I don't know why God has taken some of you down such boulevards of brokenness, physically, relationally, emotionally, maritally financially, I don't know. But I know this, there are a lot of things I don't know, there are things that I do know. And I lean on the things I do know, I want to encourage you to do the same. I know this, there needs to be an experience in every one of our lives, where we come to the place where we get out of 5 and we get into 6. Where we say, this is the truth that I know in my mind. I know this truth, but now I'm going to start believing it, and I'm going to start living it, and I'm going to start demonstrating it, and proclaiming it. Not just to myself, not just to God, but to the world around me as well. I'm going to yield to the truth, the truth that sets me free. And if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed, you will be emancipated, you will be liberated, you will be set free.

Matt Stokes: 34:39 So let me close by saying this, come face to face with the fact that we've all sinned. Don't try to overlook it, don't try to push it aside, don't try and give it a new name, it's called sin. We're all sinners. No, one's immune to the struggle with sin. But when you know the truth, the truth will set you free. And if the Son sets you free by his cross, by his shed blood, and by his empty tomb, you will be free indeed. Here's the truth, the truth is Romans 5 and Romans 6, "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." It's hard to know where to go after you've been enslaved for so long, maybe that's you and you're here today. But in Christ you find victory, in Christ you rise you rise out of the rut, in Christ you rise out of your circumstances, in Christ you can overcome, in Christ you can be sustained, in Christ you can be set free, in Christ you can be liberated, in Christ you can be emancipated, in Christ you can be set free from death to life. Because you have the power to live a new life, because he rose from the grave from death to life. Hear his voice from Jesus Christ, say to you today, "As I live, so shall ye live." And with that, amen.

Recorded in Ocean City, New Jersey.
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Coastal Christian Ocean City
300 E 8th Street
Ocean City, New Jersey 08226