Why Be Baptized?

The Pirate Gospel: Mark 1:9-13

At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. (Mark 1:9)

Skipper’s Son grew up in a region always on edge. Centuries of conflict between one sect and ah nudder, between different beliefs, diverse backgrounds and races and loyalties left folks distrustful of one ah nudder. Bandits roamed about. Zealots terrorized folks. Rome ruled, but due ter its distance from seats of power, much of Galilee remained under the control of whatever local militia might ‘ave the most power. Bribes be expected and beatings the punishment fer them who refused. This be the neighborhood the Son come from.

So it whar a fair question fer Nathanael ter ask, “Can any good thing come from Nazareth?” (John 1:46). It be like asking if anything good kin come from the slums of Bristol.

‘Bout that same time, at age thirty, the son of a carpenter set out from Nazareth with no influence, no followers, and no formal rabbinic teaching. Also, ’em who grew up with him held no expectations that he would amount ter anything.

Only a few know him ter be Skipper’s Son, fathered as it whar by the Holy Spirit, and most dared not speak of it.

Down ter the Jordan River the Son walked. Thar he found his cousin, John the Baptizer, calling folks ter repent, and be washed clean of thar sins. Now the Son didn’ ‘ave ah thing ter be washed clean of. He ne’re committed an infraction. But other folks didn’t’ know this. They seen him as jest another chap clamoring ter fall in step with John the Baptizer.

In order ter set things right from the start, the Son waded in ter the Jordan ter show that being washed clean of our filthy living be the first step towards turning ter Skipper and following him, his commands, and his character.

Why Be Baptized?

Ter day ah good many folks ‘ill make all manner and excuses fer why they don’ need ter be baptized. Folks bathe. Folks shower. Folks frolic in ponds, lakes, rivers, streams, and sea. But they won’ take a dip fer Skip.

Some claim they had water sprinkled on thar head when they was a tiny tot. Only as a tot we kin not recall such an event. The tiny brain of a tot be not large enough ter hold such memories.

Others claim they whar baptized as a youth, but kin not recall how and whar.

Even more claim being baptized be an out-dated way of showing you be a follower of the Son. That such a public showing be of no real benefit ter thar faith.

Only think on this a wee little bit. Doctor Luke writes:

Because they had been baptized by John, all the people, even the tax collectors, when they heard Jesus’ words, acknowledged that God’s way was right.

But because they had not been baptized by John, the Pharisees and the experts in the law rejected God’s purpose for themselves. (Luke 7:29-30)

Why Whar the Son Baptized?

The Son knows Skipper’s ways be right, just, and lead ter life. Though it be a mysterious matter, when we be baptized by water, our spirit aligns with Skipper’s Holy Spirit and in doing so we also align with Skip’s ways.

If the Son, Skipper’s only boy, the one fathered by the Holy Spirit thought it worth his time ter take a dip, could it not be a thing we ought ter do as well? The Son humbled himself like the common folks gathered on the banks of Jordan. Doth we think ourselves more high and mighty than the Son?

What Benefits Be Thar from Baptism?

The Son seen the heavens opening. Now that be an odd thing ter see in it self, but right after the heaven’s split, Skipper’s Holy Spirit of Truth descended upon Son in the way a dove might come ter alight on a branch.

A voice came from the heavens: “You are My beloved Son. In You I am well pleased.”

Would you like ter see inter heaven? Catch a glimpse of the heavenly realm? ‘Ave Skipper’s Holy Spirit of Truth come upon you in such a clear and obvious manner that thar ne’er be any doubt you ‘ave been washed clean of yer sins? Would you like ter receive Skipper’s purpose fer yer life and know his ways?

Would you like ter hear Skipper say ’bout ya, “You are My beloved one. In You I am well pleased.”

Repent and Be Baptized

‘Ave you done the first things first? Or did you head off on yer walk with the Son without taking the steps he took at the start?

We be called ter follow the Son, not get ahead of him. If you wish ter walk with the Son start at the start with repentance and baptism in water and Spirit. Start now from whatever hood you come from. And should ah feller or lass ever say, “you ‘ill ne’er amount ter anything. Yer jest a nobody.” don’ you believe it fer a second. Once you be in the family of Skipper you be his beloved one and always under his care and protection.

Be baptized in ter the Son and you ‘ill become Skipper’s child. If you ne’re do anything else, that right thar be a right fair accomplishment. Take a dip fer Skip. Then sail on, brothers and sisters and tell others ’bout the Son and Skipper.

Parroting the Prayers of Skip’s CrewParroting the Prayers of Skip’s Crew

Lord, with humility, teach me to walk in your authority. (Psalm 8:1)

Pirate Fact

“Keelhauling” be a form of punishment whar by a length of rope would be tied ’round and under the ship’s hull. The law breaker of the ship’s rules then be tied ter the rope and tossed in ter the sea. Back and forth, up and down the feller goes ’till he be drowned dead or cut ter shreds by barnacles. Even pirates know thar be punishment fer breaking the captain’s code of conduct and yet a good many think nothing of breaking Skippers Code of Conduct.

Our baptism be a symbolic way of acknowledging we deserved ter be keelhauled fer our offenses—killed fer breaking Skippers Code of Conduct. The Good News is, once we be baptized (keelhauled), we ne’er need fear the sting of death, fer in the Son we ‘ave life and ‘ave it ter the full.

In Tha Same Way Tha Son Warms Ya With His Mercy, Warm Others With Mercy — Jude 21-25

UMC Split

Lubber OpinionLubber Opinion

The views and opinions expressed by this lubber do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of the crew. Reader discretion be advised. – Staff

Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. – Jude 21

Dear mates, build yerself up in yer most holy faith and pray in tha Holy Ghost of Truth at all times. Keep yerself in Skipper’s love. If ya committed a grievous offense, turn towards tha Son, confess what ya done, ask fer his fergivness and wait fer tha mercy of tha Son ter wrap itself around ya like a heavy wool coat.

In tha same way tha Son warms ya with his mercy, warm others with mercy—especially them with doubt. If they doubt tha Son ever was: show mercy. If they doubt Skipper be real: show mercy. If they doubt Skipper’s Code of Conduct be his commands fer how ter carry yerself as one in his crew: show mercy.

By showing mercy towards them who doubt, ya may snatch a feller or two from that eternal fire than never ends. Thank on it this way: mercy be a long, sturdy rope ya kin toss ter a body that be floundering in tha sea. Tha more mercy ropes ya kin toss, tha better odds a feller might have ter grab a holt and be saved.

But when ya tossing them ropes of mercy ter them floundering about, do so with fear so as not ter slip and fall overboard yerself. Many a crew member has jumped in ter tha sea ter save a mate only ter get swept away by currents of sin.

Skipper be able ter keep ya from falling, only it be on ya ter be alert and watch yer stance and steps.

To tha only Skipper thar be and ter tha Son, tha only Savior thar ever ‘ill be, a hearty salute. As crew and mates we give all respect, honor, and praise, ‘cause Skip and his Son be full of all glory majesty, authority, and power. 

In Tha Last Days Thar ‘ill Be Scoffers and Mockers—Jude 11-19

UMC Split

Lubber OpinionLubber Opinion

The views and opinions expressed by this lubber do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of the crew. Reader discretion be advised. – Staff

“In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” – Jude 18

In tha last days, them last times, thar ‘ill be scoffers. Fellers filled with lust ‘ill follow thar own ungodly, selfish desires. Simon Peter warned ‘bout such mockers when he wrote: “In the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires.” So it not just be tha earthly brother of tha Son, Jude, who says such things, but them who walked and talked and learned from tha Son while he be on earth.

Such false teachers pervert tha grace of Skipper.

Fellers like these be selfish and follow tha way of Cain and look out fer thar own self, giving no thought ter how thar egregious  behavior corrupts others.

They be lovers of money and follow tha way and teachings of Balaam, tempting others ter commit sexual sin. Tha Son said as much when he wrote to some leaders of a church and warned: “I hold this against you. You hold to the teachings of Balaam and entice others to commit sexual immorality and eat food sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation of Christ 2:14)

Moses himself warned ‘bout such reprobates: “These women were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and were the means of turning the Israelites away from the Lord. ” (Numbers 31:16)

Them be harsh words, but Skipper takes a tough stand on sexual sin.

Fellers like these be blemishes when tha crew gathers fer instruction, fellership, and fer singings songs and praising Skipper. They feed themselves first and last. Like a rabid dog, they foam at the mouth. Thar words be muddy muck and tha blackest darkness be reserved fer such rascals.

Fellers like these be ungodly good-fer-nothing scoundrels, who commit ungodly acts in ungodly ways and use harsh words against them who stand with Skipper and his words of instruction. Fellers like these be ungodly sinners who speak vile words against Skipper.

Fellers like these be grumblers, finding fault with ever thing and ever one who sticks ter Skippers Code of Conduct. Instead of following tha Son, as they claim they be doing, they set a course fer their own evil desires. They boast ‘bout themselves.

Fellers like these flatter others fer thar own advantage, but they do not stick ter Skipper’s Code of Conduct and they don’ ‘ave Skipper’s Holy Ghost of Truth in ’em, ya may lay ter that.

Give a wide berth ter such rogues in tha same way ya might when rounding a headland, else ya may wreck yer faith on thar reefs of treachery.

Beginning of the Good News

The Pirate Gospel: Mark 1:1-8

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)

Because Skip’s words go forth and bring life we find at the beginning of John Mark’s tale that all folks whar flocking ter a strange prophet who whar telling folks ter repent, be baptized, and come inter the kingdom of heaven.

All the country of Judea was going out to John the Baptist, and all the people of Jerusalem. (Mark 1:5)

John Mark appears ter ‘ave spent a goodly amount of time listening ter the preaching of Simon Peter and making notes. Fer a time John Mark ministered with Saul Paul and Barnabas, but then the lad got a bad case of homesickness and jumped ship.

Though at first Saul Paul refused ter take John Mark back, at the end of his life Saul Paul pleads with Timothy ter come quickly and bring Saul Paul’s cloak, parchments (perhaps so Saul Paul could pen more letters), and scrolls (so as ter read more of Skipper’s words) and John Mark, fer he whar helpful in Paul’s ministry.

It might be said of John Mark that he learned under a pair of Skip’s greatest Good Spiel messengers—Old Pete and Saul Paul.

When we read John Mark’s words it be as if through the Holy Spirit of Truth we be transported back ter the first century and enjoy a front row seat of the Son’s travels, actions, and words.

The Beginning of the Good News

The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God. (Mark 1:1)

After reading short passages of John Mark’s tale, close yer eyes. Feel the dust on the tops of yer feet, the caked mud ‘tween yer toes. Taste the salt of sweat in yer mouth whilst the sun bakes down on you. Hear the murmuring of others whilst the Son’s words echo off buildings. Inhale the odor of sheep and cattle being led ter stalls near the perimeter of Jerusalem.

How Will We Respond to this Good News?

If this whar yer first time hearing, how would you respond ter the Son’s words? This be our challenge: ter hear afresh these loving and hope-filled words of Skipper spoken about his boy.

The Message of John the Baptizer

John the Baptizer appeared preaching a baptism of repentance fer the forgiveness of sins. As folks whar confessing their sins, they whar baptized. While all of ’em in Judea and all the people of Jerusalem whar traipsing out ter hear John, he let ’em know though baptized with water, but the one coming after him would baptize with the Holy Spirit of Truth. The prophet Malachi had promised:

“I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way.” (Malachi 3:1)

The prophet Isaiah called folks ter cut a straight path fer the Lord ter come.

“Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.” (Isaiah 40:3)

Our Response ter This Good News

This be our challenge from John: that we be washed clean in waters of baptism as ah testimony of our filthy spirit—that we repent, and prepare to meet the one Skipper ‘ill send ter take away all our sins.

John preached of how all the wrong we done kin be cleared off Skipper’s ledger when we come in ter the Son. No matter how bad ah thing you think you done, the Son kin wash away all filth if only we ‘ill come ter him, confess, and be saved by his nail-scarred hand.

Repentance be our deliberate act of turning away from sin and turning towards Skipper’s righteousness.  Skipper always grants fergiveness when thar be true repentance.

Fact be, the Son fergave all who came ter him, even ’em who didn’ ask fer fergiveness. Like the free food he served up ter ’em who whar hungry, the Son doled out fergiveness ter all. Fergiveness be not conditional upon our response. Fergiveness simply be the character of Skipper and his Son. But livin’ as one fergiven and free from sin flows from a life marked by repentancebaptismand being led by the Holy Spirit of Truth.

This be the theme and message of this tale from John Mark: that we receive the love, grace, mercy and fergiveness of Skipper and his Son in order that we be counted as one of thar crew.

What says you? Will you cast yer lot with the Son and sail ter paradise aboard Skip’s good ship of fellership?

Parroting the Prayers of Skip’s CrewParroting the Prayers of Skip’s Crew

Lord, look with favor on me ’cause of yer loving-kindness. ‘Cause of yer great love take away my wrong-doing. Wash me clean of my sins. (Psalm 51:1-2)

Pirate Facts

Although technically not ah rank, Swab be ah sailor who mops the decks using the swab is called ah “swabbie.” The term has come to describe someone who is not held in high regard by the commanders and crew. Many of ’em who came ter hear John the Baptizer whar of the sort held in low regard by religious folk. Praise be Skip looks at our heart, not up our outward appearances.

Be on Yer Guard So That Ya May Not Be Carried Away by Tha Error of Tha Lawless Fellers

Finding Jesus

Be on Yer Guard So That Ya May Not Be Carried Away by Tha Error of Tha Lawless Fellers

Be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless. – 2 Peter 3:17 (2 Peter 3:14-18)

Since we be looking forward ter tha coming of tha Son with eagerness, make ever effort ter be found washed and cleaned and with garments that not be soiled. Make it yer mark ter be blameless and at peace with tha Son so he don’ ‘ave ter call ya out on account of some offenses ya committed. Tha Son’s patience means more time fer folks ter repent and be rescued.

Peter warns ’bout how tha Apostle Paul wrote ter folks ‘bout wicked behavior. Ter be sure, Peter admits, Paul’s letters contain some hard things ter understand and do. Because ignorant and unstable fellers distort Paul’s writings, as they do other parts of Skipper’s Code of Conduct, it ‘ill lead ter thar own destruction.

Be on guard against such fellers so that ya and yer youngins may not get carried away by this wicked pack of reprobates. Think on tha yarn below these words fer a bit.

In tha dark of early morning near the broad Matla River, villagers follow tiger tracks towards the forest. All be quiet. From within tha steaming mist shards of sunlight split tha blackness. Deer hiss and high-hop away. Monkeys scurry high up trees, their yips and hooting alerting tha posse ter tha presense ahead. Clearing a slight rise, fellers peer down onto the jungle floor. There tha tiger carries tha limp body of a child in its mouth. Jaws synched tight, fangs impaled in ter tha young child’s torso. Specs of blood marks tha beast’s early dawn trek away from tha village in in ter tha jungle. In this province tha tiger be protected. Tha tiger be sacred. Tha life of tha tiger be of more value than tha life of village children.

Like this yarn, Peter warns that sinful fellers may look harmless as a tiger cub, but when fully grown they ‘ill carry away our youth. Drag ‘em away from tha threshold of our homes and in ter tha jungle of darkness. Be on guard. Make it yer task not ter fall from yer position or be distracted from yer watch. Keep yer self, flock, family, and youngins away from tha jungle of sin whar tha devil prowls about seeking ter snatch away all he kin.

Grow in grace, yes. Give ever feller and lass tha opportunity ter repent, yes. Encourage folks in tha ways of Skipper.

But also take ter heart Skip’s warnings regarding tha lawless fellers who be roaming about and leading our youth ter thar death.

Submit Ter Wholesome Thinking and Ya ‘ill He His Glory Burst Forth, Ya May Lay Ter That

Finding Jesus

Submit Ter Wholesome Thinking and Ya 'ill He His Glory Burst Forth, Ya May Lay Ter That

I write in order to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and through your apostles. – 2 Peter 3:1-2 (2 Peter 3:1-10)

Some times a feller needs a letter from home, a word of encouragement from a feller mate who serves on another of Skip’s ships. This be what Peter did from time ter time: he scratched out a note, shoved it in a bottle, and send it floating on tha currents ter them far, far away.

One bit of advice Peter offered long ago remains as apt today as it did tha day he picked up tha quill. In tha last days — and we be in ‘em fer sure — scoffers ‘ill be about. They ‘ill follow thar own evil desires and resist tha idea of a time of judgement and a time fer being held ter account fer all tha evil done in tha body.  Such rascals like ter say, “So. . . whar be this Jesus ya keep spouting ‘bout? Whar be his coming that he promised?”

Fellers who say such rubbish ferget that long ago by Skipper’s word ever thing be made. Skipper be patient, even with scoffers such as these. Skipper would prefer that ever person come ter repentance and turn from thar wicked ways.

But no matter how many days and chances Skip gives ‘em, a good many ‘ill ne’er come about and sail straight with Skipper. They be off tha edge of the map whar thar be monsters and worse.

Them who mock Skipper’s words ne’er believe that tha Son ‘ill come in his full glory and with judgement like a thief stealing aboard in tha dead of night. Whilst tha crew slumbers and tha night watch sleeps at his post, tha Son ‘ill burst forth. Then it’ll be ter late ter change yer stripes.

That be how come we need ter abide by Skipper’s Code of Conduct and live in a manner that reflects his loving and holy character. We ought ter look forward ter tha day of tha Son’s appearing and speed his coming with our prayers. “Lord,” says we, “may yer kingdom come and soon.” ‘Till such time, let us be about tha business of eagerly looking fer that day and telling others of Skipper’s love and grace and tha sacrifice his Son made fer us.

Check ter see if ya ‘ave grown in grace and understanding of Skip’s Code. Doth ya have more insight of Skipper, more of tha Son’s character, than ya had last year this time? Last month? Last week?

Purity be tha result of continued spiritual living with Skipper. Our vision of what lies beyond tha horizon grows stronger when we become more like Skip and get his view of things. It be tha pure in heart who see Skipper. (Matthew 5:8) It be tha pure in heart who see Skip’s hand at work in tha heavens, on earth, and in thar life.

Skipper asks, “Shall I hide from him what I am doing?” (Genesis 18:17) “No!” says we. “Show us.”

Submit ter wholesome thinking and ya ‘ill see his glory burst forth, ya may lay ter that.

Bold and Arrogant Fellers Speak Irreverently About Skipper and His Words in Matters They Doth Not Understand

Finding Jesus

Bold and Arrogant Fellers Speak Irreverently About Skipper and His Words in Matters They Doth Not Understand

Bold and arrogant, these people blaspheme in matters they do not understand. – 2 Peter 2:10-12 (2 Peter 2:10-22)

Bold and arrogant fellers speak irreverently about Skipper and his words in matters they doth not understand. Such reprobates idear of a good time be ter get drunk in broad daylight. Thar eyes always be on tha lookout fer women they kin have relations with; if not in a bed, then in thar mind. Ever lass they see be a potential partner. They ne’er stop going about seducing tha unstable. Left tha straight way, they ‘ave, and wandered off ter follow tha ways of wickedness that leads ter destruction. They ‘ill be paid back fer tha harm they ‘ave done, ya may lay ter that.

These fellers spout empty, boastful words. By appealing ter tha lustful desires of sin-filled hearts, they bait folks who be jest escaping tha snares of tha devil and take ‘em captive again. Scoundrels of this sort promise freedom from Skipper’s moral code while they themselves be slaves ter depravity. Of this ya kin be sure: a feller be mastered by whatever bait he takes.

If such degenerates ‘ave escaped tha corruption of tha devil’s ways after knowing about Skipper and tha Son and now be entangled in all manner of detestable behavior a second time, they be worse off at tha end than at the beginning.

Better off fer them if they ne’er had known tha way of tha Son and his sacrifice than ter know of it and turn thar backs on Skipper’s sacred commands ter confess, repent, and be cleansed by tha blood of tha Son.

A lubber’s saying comes ter mind: “A mutt ‘ill return to its vomit; a hog that be once washed ‘ill wallow in tha mud, again.”

This be tha way of them who know of Skipper’s Code of Conduct — know ‘bout tha life of tha Son and all he suffered fer us, and still prefer ter revel in thar abominable acts.

#Bible #Jesus #God #Christian #dailydevotions #devotions #christianity #bibleverse #biblestudy