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Baptisms and Transfers -- 19 Dec 2021

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On 19 Dec 2021, we had the great joy to witness and celebrate the baptism of five new members and welcome eight via transfer of membership. We thank God for each and everyone of them, praising Him for how He has pursued and called them to Him and giving them the desire and obedience to proclaim their faith and commit their lives to Christ. 

Prior to the baptisms, Ps Eugene explained that baptism is a sign of our union with Christ through faith in Him. He clarified that baptism does not save as we are saved through faith alone, in Christ alone and by His grace alone. Thus, baptism itself is a picture of the conversion that God has effected. By going under the water, these five precious ones identified with Christ in His death; when they were brought up out of the water, it signified that they were raised with Christ in the power of His resurrection; and by the work of His Spirit are now able to walk in the newness of life. These individuals are precious to God, they have been redeemed and purchased to belong to God by the precious blood of His Son, Jesus Christ. 

Baptisms

Below are snippets of the testimonies of the five baptised members, and you can read their full testimonies here

Caroline Faizah

Caroline shared how a friend introduced John's Gospel to her which led her to know who God is. She shared in her written testimony,

After I finished John’s Gospel, the God whom I thought my family knew suddenly became foreign. The God whom I found now love me even though I am not perfect. John 3:16-17: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” How amazing is that? We do not need to earn His favour because we already have His favour when He sends His son to us. 

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Joel Neo

Joel encouraged us with how faithful God has been in pursuing him and drawing him near, 

Looking back, I realise that God has never stopped pursuing me as I moved on to later phases in life and continually came into contact with Christianity; by attending math tuition organised by a church when I was 14 and an evangelical event by chance in university. Even as I unknowingly lived my life free from God, He never stopped loving me and drawing me to Him. 

The turning point for me came in December 2020 when I was invited to attend an event at a friend’s church on “Finding Hope”. I was not in a good place at that time, but somehow felt led to attend. That day, the message delivered about the hope that Christians have in Christ resonated with me deeply. The pastor talked about how those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint (Isa 40:31). 

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Kelvin Lum

Kelvin shared how his wife, Rebecca (who joined us via transfer of membership), invited him to GBC and through the sermons, he began to learn more about Christ and his need for a Saviour,

As Rebecca urged me to join her for Sunday service, I came to learn more about Christ. At the same time, I began to realise that I am a sinner even if my actions do not seem so. My heart’s desires were not pleasing to God. Before, I always saw myself as a good person who has not done bad things. I never thought of myself as a sinner. However, as I came to know more about Jesus, to know what He has done for us, I recognised that I am a sinner and that I should trust Him, receive His forgiveness, listen to His Word, follow Him, and grow to be more like Him.

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Martin Tan

Martin shared how he struggled with knowing Christ as a "second-generation Christian" but God through His Word, revealed Himself to him, 

For me, the journey to discovering my faith was through understanding the story of the Bible. God created the world, and created Man, and it was wholly good. But Man decided to rebel against God, and we rejected God as King of our lives...

However, we have a merciful and patient God. He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to be a propitiation for our sin – that Jesus could be sin for us. Jesus came down to earth, and God turned his face away. Jesus, wholly God and wholly man, was tormented for our sins although he committed no sin! He died, and on the third day He rose again. It is amazing to me, that if we choose to believe in this loving God, and through our belief have a heart of repentance for our sin, that God will see us as sinless. Our sins can be washed away through Jesus, if we believe in his resurrection. This means that we recognise him as Lord and Saviour of our lives. This is a choice, of course, for us to make. I choose to follow Jesus and recognise him as Saviour of my life, in fellowship with His people, the church.

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Mercia Tan

Mercia grew up in a Christian family and attended church since she was young. She shared how God constantly pursued her as she struggled with her faith, 

Even though I was not aware of it, God constantly pursued me. Going to church often felt like a part of the schedule and it was tough to consistently attend Bible studies during my earlier teenage years due to the distractions of life but still, God was faithfully working through it all. He kept bringing me close to Him and the church so that I was able to learn more about His loving character. Even while I was disappointed at my mundane spiritual life and doubtful of my faith, God continued to use His Word through His people, the older Christians at church, to encourage and remind me of the gift that Jesus gave when He took the heavy blame for my sins and died on the cross for me despite being the perfect and blameless Son of God. I don’t think that I can pinpoint an exact moment when that truly hit me but I believe that God was working in my heart over the entire period. Eventually, after many earnest prayers and Bible studies, God helped me to internalise and recognise His love for me and my need for repentance and salvation through Jesus Christ.

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Heaven rejoiced as (below, L-R) Kelvin, Martin, Mercia, Caroline and Joel confessed their faith and committed to follow Christ all the days of their lives! You can read their full testimonies here.

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Transfers 

In addition to the baptised members, we also welcomed eight new members via transfer of membership. We are so encouraged by how God has been working in them and how He has brought them to GBC. You can read their testimonies here

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We warmly welcomed (L-R) Robert Yap, Anna Yap, Tabitha Yeong, Brandon Loke, Rebecca Tan, Kimberly Siew, Jolene Fong and Alan Kuei (not in photo).

At the end of the service, Ps Eugene introduced and welcomed these 13 new members into our midst: 

We praised God for being the source and giver of life. We thanked Him for entrusting to us these precious treasures whom He has so generously added to the GBC family, through no work of our own but solely by His grace and His work through the gospel.  We prayed that as His people, we would stregnthen one another, love one another and continually point one another to Christ. We prayed that God would enable us to unite around Christ and His Gospel and continually build one another up for the sake of His name. 

We are so encouraged by these 13 new members' stories of faith and God's grace in their lives. Their testimonies are available here. Do also drop them a note of encouragement to welcome them and to get to know one another better!