Baptism And A Vision
So Joshua went over to the dead girl and said, "Don't worry! I'm Joshua!" But the girl didn't move.
Then he touched her with his S.W and said, "In Jesus's name!" The girl opened her eyes and looked at him. She was in his SFC class. Her name was Leah. She was the one that the Devilists made fun of because she was very short.
Then he put his arms around her and said, "Don't be afraid. I'm Joshua. Are you all right?"
Slowly, she sat up. Then she put her arms around him and started crying. "Thank you! Thank you! You saved me!"
"It was the Lord Jesus who saved you," replied Joshua, sounding relieved that she was still alive. "Come on! Let's get out of here!"
As they were leaving, a man ran toward them. Then they realized that he was the new leader of the Devilist Community of this building. His name was Mr. Molech.
"Follow me!" he yelled at them.
So they followed him with fear. Were they in trouble? Finally, he stopped at a door.
He pointed at Leah and said, "You may go."
"No!" she shouted at him. "I'm willing to die with Joshua! He saved me!"
The man smiled nastily and replied, "Well he's not going to die, silly girl! Leave at once!!" And she left.
Joshua sat in front of the man. His whole body was shaking with fear. Being in the presence of a Devilist wasn't fun at all.
"So tell me," began the man. "How many demons have you destroyed? Why did you destroy them? You'll have to pay for this! You've destroyed our best friends!"
"Aren't humans more precious than demons?" asked Joshua.
Just then, Brother Noah and Brother Paul had entered the room.
"What happened, Joshua?" said Brother Noah in a worried voice.
"So you don't care for our demons?" yelled the man at Brother Noah. "This boy has destroyed 22 of our best demons!"
Brother Noah shouted, "Joshua will not be punished for destroying demons! And demons can't die, because they're immortal." Then he opened the door and said, "Come with me, Joshua!"
"He'll have to pay for this!" yelled the Devilist leader.
So Joshua followed Brother Noah and Brother Paul back to the Christian sections. Then they went to Brother Noah's office.
"I want you to tell me the whole story," said Brother Noah.
Then Joshua told him everything. He told him about how he had saved Leah.
"You saved my daughter?" asked Brother Paul, hugging Joshua very tightly. "Thank you! May the Lord bless you always! Didn't I tell you that you would be the best soldier?"
"So they want to punish you for saving people?" laughed Brother Noah. "Joshua you've done something very good today! How could anyone punish you for saving Brother Paul's daughter?"
Joshua returned to his section and told his friends everything that had happened. Next, he turned to John and asked, "How did you do?"
"Very bad," snickered John. "I was almost killed by some ugly demons. But the Spiritual Soldiers came to save me just in time."
"So will I have to do the same thing next year?" Emily asked in a worried voice.
"Yep!" shouted John excitedly. "And I guarantee you that you won't survive. They're very powerful, you know."
The rest of January went very well. Then, on the first day of February, Brother James, the teacher of Basic Beliefs and Teachings of Christianity, said, "Well after a person opens his or her heart to the Lord, that person must be baptized. Baptism is an act of immersing people in the water. This represents our death, burial and resurrection with the Lord Jesus. Baptism is also a witness that we have decided to dedicate our lives to the Lord.
This year, baptism will take place on February the 11th."
Joshua had his hand up. So he asked, "And where are we going to do it?"
"Nice question!" replied Brother James. "Well there's a river very close to this building. After we're done baptizing, we'll be going to the church area. There we'll have a very big celebration."
"Well I haven't been baptized yet," said John. "Even Emily hasn't. So I'm going to get baptized this year!"
"And we'll be doing it together," Joshua finished his speech for him.
After the school was over, Joshua told Emily that he and John were going to be baptized.
"Great!" she replied. Her voice was back to normal again. "But I can't do it yet, because a person must be twelve years or older to get baptized. So my turn is next year."
That night, everyone was called to the church area. They were celebrating the baptism of Jesus by John the baptizer.
"Welcome to the church area, everyone!" began Pastor Moses. "Today, we're celebrating the baptism of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. He didn't need to be baptized, but he wanted to show us how humble he was. Let's read from Matthew chapter three, verses thirteen to the end of the chapter:
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him.
But John would have hindered him, saying, 'I need to be baptized by you, and you come to me?'
But Jesus, answering, said to him, 'Allow it now, for this is the fitting way for us to fulfill all righteousness.' Then he allowed him. Jesus, when he was baptized, went up directly from the water: and behold, the heavens were opened to him. He saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming on him. Behold, a voice out of the heavens said, 'This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.' Jesus was baptized at the age of thirty, because according to the Jewish custom, when a man is about thirty years of age, he is able to become a priest. Our Saviour was baptized at the Jordan River. That's where our students will be baptized this year!"
So they spent the rest of the week talking about baptism. Both Joshua and John were very excited. Emily and Sarah, however, had to wait for the next year, because only grade seven students and higher were allowed to be baptized.
On February the tenth, Brother Abraham and Sister Sarah had arrived at the Holy Community to celebrate Joshua's and John's baptisms.
"We're here to celebrate your baptism," said Brother Abraham, shaking Joshua's hand. "We're very excited about it too."
When Sister Sarah saw Joshua, she hugged him very tightly and kissed him. He almost felt that she was his mother. So he started crying, saying, "You're like a mother to me!"
She started crying as well.
"And you're like a son to me," she said.
It was now the night of February the tenth. All those who were going to be baptized the next day were very excited. Joshua and John were very excited as well. Even Leah was going to be baptized, because she was the same age that they were.
Emily and Sarah, however, had to wait for the next year, because baptism is done only for those who are twelve or over.
Joshua was the first to wake up that morning. So he went to the main room of section 1994. There was no one there. So he opened a computer and started to memorize the verse that he would be saying at baptism. It was taken from Matthew 28:19. It said, "Go then, and make disciples of all the nations, giving them baptism in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
"Good morning, brother!" said John as he entered the room. "How are you this morning?"
"Very happy," replied Joshua.
Then they went to the restaurant to eat breakfast. Emily came and sat beside Joshua, as she always liked to do.
After breakfast, Brother Abraham took Joshua aside, and whispered to him, "Are you in love with my daughter Emily?"
Joshua felt very nervous now. But he said, "Yes, sir."
"You don't need to worry," smiled Brother Abraham. "It's great honour for us to give her to you."
"And she loves me too," said Joshua truthfully.
"Great!" shouted Brother Abraham. Then they went back into the restaurant again.
"What did dad want from you?" asked Emily, as Joshua sat back in his chair.
Then he explained everything to her.
"Wonderful!" she said happily. "So are we going to get married when we're ready?"
"The Lord willing," replied Joshua.
She got closer to him and said, "I really do love you. Yes, I want to marry you."
"I love you too, dear," he said, crying.
Talking about love always made him want to cry, because love is so powerful. It can change your feelings completely.
Then they left the building and went to a place where there was water. It was in a river.
"This is the Jordan River," explained Pastor Moses. "Just like in the Bible. Jesus was baptized at the Jordan River."
"So Jesus was baptized in here?" asked John.
"Well not here," laughed Pastor Moses. "But this river has the same name as the one in the Bible."
"Even the Devilists call it 'The Jordan River?'" asked Samuel, who had just joined in the conversation.
"Nope," answered Pastor Moses. "They call it 'Blood River.'"
After everyone had gathered around him, Pastor Moses began: "So today we'll be baptizing some of our brothers and sisters in Christ. I hope that you'll enjoy the celebration.
Baptism means that we've been crucified, entombed and resurrected with the Lord Jesus Christ. It doesn't mean that people actually die, but it is just a symbol of Christ's death on the cross for our sins.
Baptism is also a proof that we've decided to follow the Lord Jesus Christ. So before we decide to be baptized, we must be living according to the word of God.
Now I just want to remind you that baptism does not save you from your sins, but it just means that you're now a follower of Christ."
Joshua was very nervous. He didn't know if he were going to survive being in the water or not.
So Pastor Moses began baptizing them one by one. Some of them looked very happy but others looked nervous.
When it was Joshua's turn to be baptized, he went and stood in front of Pastor Moses.
Then Pastor Moses started asking him questions:
"Do you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ?"
"Yes," replied Joshua.
"Did you open your heart to him?"
"Yes," answered Joshua.
Then Pastor Moses took him into a room and said, "The first part of baptism is called 'Baptism by the blood.' So you'll have to change your clothes for this part. We have special clothes for this occasion. So then, you'll take one of the bottles that are full of blood and you'll sprinkle it on your whole body. This represents the blood of Christ. It does not save you. It's only a representation of the blood of the Lord, which washes away all our sins."
Many people donated the blood. But the baptizers would also add lots of water to it, because they didn't want to use too much blood. The water looked red just like the blood.
The baptizers would also add tomato juice to it, so that there will be more red water.
So Joshua took his clothes off and went to the bathtub. Then, Pastor Moses sprinkled the blood on him, because he didn't know how to do it on his own. His whole body was wet with blood. He also sprinkled the blood on his forehead, eyes and nose.
After that, Joshua left the bathtub and put a new set of clothes on, because he was wet with blood. This kind of clothes was used for this event.
Pastor Moses took him outside again. Everyone was staring at him.
Then Pastor Moses explained, "The second part of baptism is called 'The Baptism By Water.' This will wash you from the blood."
Then he shouted, "I baptize you in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen!" and Joshua was immersed in the water.
"Congratulations!" said Pastor Moses as Joshua came out of the water. "May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you always!"
Then Pastor Moses took him to a very hot room and said, "You have to stay here until you're all dried up. This represents baptism by fire. And that's the final part of baptism. Congratulations!"
After ten minutes, Pastor Moses returned to Joshua, anointed him with oil, and took him outside. Anointing with oil is a representation of becoming a member of God's family. It also means that he was chosen to serve the Lord his whole life.
Then many people were coming to hug him. Emily ran very fast to him and kissed him.
"You're very special now!" she shouted. "So your responsibility is to serve the Lord your whole life. Congratulations, dear!"
Finally, it was John's turn to be baptized. He chose to be the last one, because he was very nervous. Pastor Moses did to him as he had done to Joshua.
After he had come out of the water, he was shaking from cold, because it was freezing that day. So Pastor Moses took him into the hot room just like Joshua.
So Joshua shook his hand and said, "Well done, brother!"
After that, they decided to go back into the building and to the church area. Pastor Moses was the organizer of the worship service that day.
So they started the worship service with hymns and songs of praise. Then Pastor Moses gave a very long sermon on baptism.
Everybody enjoyed the worship service. They all said that they felt God's presence.
In the end of the worship service, Joshua asked Pastor Moses, "I'm really enjoying God's presence here. So can I stay a little longer please?"
He thought that Pastor Moses would not let him stay in the church area after everyone had left. But Pastor Moses smiled and said, "Anyone is welcomed in God's house. You may stay as long as you like. It's not my house, but it belongs to the Lord. So don't ask me to stay."
He smiled again and continued, "I would like to share something with you first. In this area, we have many very small rooms. People can come into these rooms and enjoy God's presence. Sometimes, they say that they see visions in these rooms, because they're so full of God's presence.
Enjoy!" and he left.
Joshua looked around but there was no one left. So he decided to enter into one of the small rooms.
He opened the door and entered. There were no lights. Instead, there were three candles burning. The only light in the room came from the candles. These candles represented the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, who make up the Holy Trinity.
There was also a strong smell of incense. It filled the room.
Joshua sat on the floor, because he didn't want to look important in the house of God. He thought that Jesus was the head of the Church. That's why he didn't sit on a chair.
There was also a small table where the candles were burning. On that table was a writer, a little device that contains books, articles and other types of writing. When Joshua saw it, he took it and sat on the floor again.
He opened the first page, which said: "The book of prayers and hymns for anyone who wants to worship the Lord in the church area.
This book contains thousands of prayers and hymns for different situations that you want to pray about. If you want the Lord to answer your prayer, come to one of these rooms and take one of these books and look for your situation."
The next page gave a list of subjects used in this book and where to find prayers or hymns on a particular subject.
The subject that most interested Joshua was called "Prayers to receive Heavenly visions."
So he started reading the prayers and the hymns. But his whole heart and feelings were completely focused on the Lord. He meant every word that he read. His heart was filling with an unspeakable joy.
Then he started reading with a loud voice. He shouted, "O taste and experience how sweet Jesus is!"
Suddenly, he fell asleep. Few minutes later, however, he woke up to find the whole room full of an indescribable light. The three candles were still burning, but they couldn't make that much light.
Then he heard a voice say, "Joshua, the Lord has heard your prayer, asking for a Heavenly vision."
Within a second, a man and a woman had appeared in the room. Their bodies, however, were different from human bodies. They didn't touch any physical thing.
Then Joshua realized something.
"Yes, dear," they both answered.
Then the man smiled and said, "My son, you've chosen to follow the Lord Jesus Christ. That's the best choice that a person could ever make."
"But where did all this light come from?" asked Joshua, feeling happy and surprised. This was the best time in his whole life. He was talking to his parents.
"I am the light of the world," replied a voice from nowhere. "Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness."
Then Joshua realized that it was the Lord who appeared in a form of light. Therefore, there were three people talking with Joshua, and they were the Lord Jesus, Joseph and Mary, his parents.
Then Mary spoke and said, "My son, trust in the Lord and he will help you. Don't be afraid of evil. The Lord Jesus wasn't afraid of death, that's how he was able to defeat the devil. So courage brings victory."
Joshua didn't know what to say or think. However, he felt very happy that he was hearing the voices of his parents for the first time in his life. He also heard the voice of Jesus.
"Can you tell me anything about when I was only six months old?" he asked interestingly.
"Well…" began Joseph. "Brother Noah came to Canada, where I was born. He preached the Good News for me. Therefore, I decided to open my heart to the Lord. Next, he visited your mother and did the same thing. Your mother also opened her heart to the Lord. Then Brother Noah brought us to live in New Jerusalem, and specifically, in the Holy Community Building. So then, your mother and I got married. On August the twenty-ninth, 2200, you were born. Then on March the seventh of the next year, we were murdered. However, we didn't know what happened to you. The Lord told us that you are alive. That's why he sent us to speak with you. So tell us, what happened after we left your world?"
Joshua told them everything that had happened since they were murdered until this day. He told them about his life with the Bakers.
"Well I know that my sister hates me," said Mary. "But I love her, because our Lord taught us to love; even our enemies."
Then Joshua told them about the Abrahams.
"Yes," said Joseph, "We were like brothers and sisters. Even Brother Benjamin and Sister Bianca were in our group. We know that Brother Benjamin was kidnapped. So is he still in prison?"
"Yes he is," stated Joshua. "But his son, Samuel, is one of my best friends."
"How are the Abrahams?" asked Mary.
"Very good," smiled Joshua. "They treat me like one of their own children. I'm in love with their daughter, Emily, and she's in love with me as well."
"I encourage you to marry Emily when you're old enough," continued Mary. "We never saw her, because she was born after we left this world."
"So what happened to Beelzebub after he failed to murder you?" asked Joseph thoughtfully.
"He lost all his powers," Joshua told his father. "He's hiding somewhere, because he's afraid that someone might arrest him."
"So what's Heaven like?" asked Joshua, not knowing what to say.
"Very beautiful," replied Joseph. "But that's all I can tell you now. You'll know all about it one day."
"And why can't you tell me now?" asked Joshua.
Joseph and Mary suddenly disappeared. Joshua looked everywhere but they weren't found. However, the light was still there. Then Joshua realized that Jesus was still there.
Joshua looked up and said, "Lord Jesus?"
"Yes, my child," replied the Lord mercifully. "Many people call me 'Jesus' instead of 'Lord Jesus,' but you have respected my Holy Name. Therefore, people will respect your name one day."
Joshua said, "But Lord, I don't deserve all this. Why do you care about me so much?"
"Because I love you," replied the Lord. "I created you in my own image."
"But I'm a sinner," said Joshua, almost crying because of Jesus's love for him.
"I know you are," answered the Lord. "But sin did not come from you. It came from the devil. That's why I decided to redeem you, because I knew that it wasn't your fault.
Secondly, I don't remember your sins any longer, because they were all washed in my blood."
Joshua was crying very hard now. He did nothing to earn God's love.
"I'm a sinner!" he shouted. "I'm unclean! How could the holiest person in Heaven and on earth die for a person such as me?"