BAPTISM

BAPTISM

The use of the word, “baptism”

“BAPTISM” is a Greek word meaning “immersion.”
“TO BAPTIZE” can be translated as, to immerse, to merge, to add, to join, to unite, etc.

In any verse, “TO BAPTIZE” can be replaced with to immerse, to merge, to add, to join or to unite, without altering the meaning of the sentence, as given in the following examples.

EXAMPLES

(Examples of the use of the word “baptism”)

1

Acts 2:47 …And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved …And the Lord baptized into the church daily those who were being saved

2

1Cor.12:13 …For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body… …For by one Spirit we were all joined together as one body…

3

Rom.6:5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be (united together) in the likeness of His resurrection For if we have been baptized in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be (baptized) in the likeness of His resurrection

4

Matt.3:16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water… When He had been immersed (into the water), Jesus came up immediately from the water…

5

Acts 8:38 So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he immersed him

 

From the above examples, we should understand that wherever the word “baptism” appears it does not always mean “witnessing in the waters of baptism.” Whenever we come across the word “baptism”, we can easily understand from the context, whether it means “witnessing in the waters of baptism” or the “merging” or “uniting” work of the Holy Spirit.

Outwardly testifying that which has been accomplished inwardly

When we “witness in the waters of baptism” we outwardly testify what has already been accomplished inwardly by the Holy Spirit. We can witness in the waters of baptism, only AFTER we are saved; first salvation and after that baptism. Here, we are speaking about the first aspect of salvation, which is sometimes called, ‘to be saved’ or ‘to be born-again.’  Before a person is born-again, he is spiritually dead and is separated from God and so he cannot hear God or obey God (Eph.2:1, 5; 1Cor.2:14). As soon as you are saved, you must understand God’s love and love Him with your whole heart. That is, you must start obeying Him (John 14:15, 21, 23), everything you do should be pleasing to the Lord (1Cor.6:19, 20). Through our continuous obedience, the second aspect of salvation (salvation of the soul) is accomplished in us. As soon as we are saved by grace through faith, the most simple and first command to us, is to obey in baptism (Matt.28:19, 20). The Father is well pleased with us when we start obeying.

BAPTISM TEACHINGS

  • Why should we witness in the waters of baptism?

  1. The Lord Jesus commanded Matt.28:19
  2. The Lord Jesus obeyed and set an example for us to follow Matt.3:13-16; 5-6? Heb.2:17
  3. Disciples preached & practiced it Rom.6:3-5; Acts 8:12, 36-40; 16:30-34; 18:8
  • Who can be baptized?

  1. Only those who have believed – saved by grace through faith Acts 8:37
  2. Repented Matt.3:7, 8, life is being changed and also started to bring forth fruit worthy of repentance

i.      Luke 15:21 Prodigal son – came to himself, rose up and returned to his father, Luke 19:8 Zacchaeus – he was greedy, but became generous, Acts 19:18, 19 Ephesians – not only confessed, but also burned all their books

ii.      Fruit of the spirit Gal.5:22, 23

iii.      Bearing fruits Matt.7:15, 16; 21:43 – the fragrance & sweet savor of Christ

    1. Answer of a good conscience 1Pet.3:21
    2. A good testimony before men
  • What is the meaning of baptism?

Baptism means, immersion/adding/uniting/merging/etc. We are saved by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 16:30, 31; John 3:16; John 1:12; Eph.2:8, 9). By putting simple faith on the Lord Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross, we identify ourselves with Christ and we become one with Him, in His death, burial and resurrection

  1. Died – Gal.2:20 (Acts 9); Rom.6:6
  2. Buried – Rom.6:4; Col.2:12; (out of sight Gen.23:4); Heb.8:12
  3. Raised – Rom.6:5; Gal.2:20; Rom.6:4, 7, 14; Eph.2:4-6 – walk in newness and in the joy of victorious life

Through baptism, we witness OUTWARDLY, whatever has been accomplished INWARDLY when we were saved by grace through faith

  • Sealed and Indwelt by the Holy Spirit

As soon as we put simple faith on the Lord Jesus Christ, we are saved and also sealed and indwelt by the Holy Spirit (Eph.1:13, 14; 2Cor.1:22; Eph.4:30)

  • Baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit

According to the Lord’s command, we must be baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit Matt.28:19

The meaning of Acts 2:38 and other such passages in Acts should be properly understood. Whatever happened during the days of Acts, is a final attempt made by God to save the Nation of the Jews (Acts 11:19; 13:46; 18:5, 6; 28:28, 29). God had the plan to first save the Jews and then bless all other nations through them (Gen.12:1-3; Exo.19:5, 6). They had to be baptized (joined) in the name of Jesus, because they refused to submit to the authority of Jesus, their Messiah. They had to obtain the forgiveness of their sin of unbelief and disobedience and their sin of killing all the prophets and also their Messiah Matt.23:34, 35, Acts 2:22, 23, 36; 3:13; 4:10, etc. After the period of the time of Acts, God has set aside the Nation of Israel and has started working in the church, which consists mainly of people saved from among the Gentiles. These teachings, found in the Book of Acts, which were earlier directed toward the Jews, should not be made doctrines in the church.

  • Understanding Baptism

Baptism is also a witnessing of being SEPARATED from among the unsaved and being ADDED to them who are saved – Acts 2:40, 41
Joined to ONE Church – Matt.16:18; Acts 2:47
It is ONE Body – Eph.1:22, 23; Col.1:18; S of S 6:10
Witnessing that we are also joined to the local Church – believers of a locality

  1. Need of one another 1Cor.12; Heb.10:24, 25; James 5:16; Col.3:13
  2. Use of gifts Eph.4:11, 15, 16; 1Tim.4:14; 2Tim.1:6
  3. Being built up together/growing together