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· The Scriptural baptism of Jesus is a commandment not a ‘covenant,’ (Mt. 28:19-20)
· Scriptural water baptism is the will or “counsel” of God, (Luke 7:29-30)
· Scriptural water baptism is a symbolic funeral of ‘the old sin nature’ and the resurrection in a new life, (Rom. 6:1–14)
· Scriptural water baptism is also the Holy Spirit’s circumcision of the ‘old man;’ the “cutting away of the body of sin” from the born again human spirit of the believer during water baptism by submersion, (Col. 2:11-15)
· Baptism in the Name of Jesus, or in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?
· Should we be dunked three times or only once?
WHAT ARE THE MAIN REASONS WHY BABIES CANNOT BE BAPTIZED?
The footnote, 1991 Spirit Filled Life Bible, clearly explained, “It is the personal response of faith on the occasion of baptism that saves… Water baptism is closely linked to the initial confession of faith. [Sadly,] this is not usually the case today, [even by those who really profess Jesus.]”
· Babies or young children cannot understand the Gospel, personally believe in Jesus, confess their sin, or take the responsibility of being His disciples, (Jn. 1:12-13; Col. 1:13-14; Eph. 1:12-14; 1 Pt. 2:9-10.) Therefore, a baby and other church conformers, who do not understand the true Gospel of Christ,] are unbelievers. They can never be baptized Scripturally as Jesus Himself commanded, and as His true disciples practiced baptism in the Bible and through the ages. Besides this important truth, the baby christening is nowhere to be found in the truth of Scripture.
· Nevertheless, baby-sprinkling adherents still choose to challenge God’s truth and ask sarcastically, “When we eat holy communion, (sincere believers eat The Lord’s Supper, (1 Cor. 11:23-32.) So, why would you submerge yourself in water if baptism is a symbol of salvation, and a sprinkling does the job just fine?”
As said, human opinion does not impress God. Jesus Himself never demonstrated nor commanded us to eat a whole bread and drink a whole bottle of wine at the Lord’s Supper, (1 Cor. 11:23-32.) In fact, He forbade His believers to “get drunk from wine” or anything else. But He did demonstrate and command total submersion into water for His sincerely believing disciples!
The Greek word baptismos, from which the word ‘baptism’ was derived, will always mean ‘submerge,’ or ‘wash,’ [N.T. Greek Dictionary; Strong’s Concordance.] Thus, the word ‘bapto,’ as used everywhere in New Testament Scripture, always means ‘to submerge.” ‘Baptizo’ means, “I baptize” or “I submerge.”
Throughout Scripture and even practically, ‘bapto’ can never be interpreted as sprinkling, (rantizo or raino in Greek,) or pouring, (cheno in Greek) – except in false doctrines, which deliberately twist Scripture, add to God’s Word, or subtract from the contextual truth of the Bible.
It is important to baptize believers by submersion, as “bapto” signifies the spiritual “clothing [or submersing of the sincere believer] with Christ,” (Gal. 3:26-29.) Hence, Jesus Who demonstrated this baptism by His own example and all His truly believing disciples, were submerged in water to signify their allegiance to the New Testament Covenant and the God and Christ of this Covenant, Jesus Himself.
As we have seen, Jesus and all His true disciples preached exactly the same Scriptural baptism, which Jesus Himself illustrated in Matthew 3:13-17, and also commanded in Matthew 28:19-20.
This is Jesus’ True Gospel, which governs the course of the entire New Testament era; stripped of all church doctrines.
It is a Gospel so uncomplicated a child can understand every word.
Why did so many segments of Christianity replace Jesus’ commandment with so many complicated church doctrines and so-called ‘saving’ church rituals or sacraments, instead of believing and obeying Jesus as sincerely “as a little child?” Because Christianity has always used the water baptism in one way or another as a political and religious tool to multiply members for their church systems in Christian countries, instead of making real, believing disciples for the Spiritual Kingdom of God. (Again: ‘christening’ means, ‘to make babies into church Christians through the baby ‘baptism.’)
SCRIPTURAL WATER BAPTISM IS A COMMANDMENT (NOT A COVENANT) OF JESUS
Jesus’ baptism is a powerful symbol of the inward, spiritual rebirth of sincerely believing disciples of Christ. The Biblical water baptism of true disciples is a once-off declaration that the disciple has died to the world, sin, and self, (Gal. 2:20.) As said, it is an absolute turning point in the life of every sincere believer, which can never be repeated. Satan intensely hates the real water baptism because, as a commandment of Jesus Himself, it is compulsory for all personally born again believers. But because it is a personal choice to obey Jesus above all else, it is not humanly enforceable. Still, Jesus did not demonstrate the method of water baptism so that we can choose to ignore or replace His commandment with a meaningless church sacrament. Should we choose to disobey Jesus, He will surely hold us accountable for such disobedience, (Mt. 7:21-24.)
· There is no way we can mistake Jesus’ commandment, or believe that His own baptism was ‘changed,’ ‘replaced,’ or ‘annulled’ in some way, as this is not even suggested anywhere in Scripture.
Again I underscore the last commandment Jesus entrusted to His believing disciples in Matthew 28:18-20, “All authority was given to Me in heaven and on earth [and I give you all the authority necessary to obey and follow Me.] Go therefore, and make [believing, obedient] disciples from all the nations, baptizing [these believing disciples] in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, teaching [these disciples] to observe all things that I [Jesus and not church doctrines] have commanded you, and lo, I Am with you always, even to the end of this world.”
· Footnote, 1991 Spirit Filled Life Bible, “While Jesus’ ministry had been to Israel, [before the cross under the Old Testament Covenant, (see Mt. 10:5-6, Jn. 7:39,)] proclamation of, and adherence to His Lordship is here extended to all the nations. His disciples are to acknowledge openly their allegiance to Christ by water baptism, which is ministered under the authority of the [Scriptural] Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The content of the disciples’ future teaching would stem from what Jesus had commanded them. Jesus assured them of His constant presence as they go on their divinely commanded mission [to spread His true Spiritual Kingdom throughout the whole world exactly as He commanded.]”
SCRIPTURAL WATER BAPTISM IS THE WILL OR ‘COUNSEL’ OF GOD: Luke 7:29-30
Our obedience to Jesus’ commandment to baptizo [or submerge] ourselves in the water baptism according to His own example, “acknowledges the justice of God in calling us to repentance” from useless, traditional rituals and false interpretations of Scripture, (Lu. 7:29.)
Luke declared in Chapter 7:29-30, “When all the people heard [Jesus,] even the tax collectors, [who were perceived as the worst sinners of all,] justified God, being baptized with the baptism of [submersion into water, which signifies our immersion into Christ, as demonstrated by Jesus Himself.] But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, not being baptized…”
That is why we can directly relate Pharisaical disobedience to Jesus’ commandment to Scripturally baptize true believers, to His confrontational questions in Matthew. 21:24-25, “The baptism [which I command My disciples in Mt. 28:19,] where did it come from? From heaven or from the people? For if it came from heaven, why do you not believe Me and obey? And for how long will you reject the counsel of God, being not baptised?” – (Mt. 21:25-26; Lu. 7:29-30.)
SCRIPTURAL WATER BAPTISM IS A SYMBOLIC FUNERAL OF ‘THE OLD SIN NATURE’ AND THE RESURRECTION IN A NEW LIFE
Through the ages, Satan and his religious followers did everything in their power to keep sincere believers from the truth concerning Scriptural water baptism. Satan would not have gone to so much trouble if water baptism was ‘optional,’ or a so-called impersonal ‘saving’ church sacrament that your parents could do in your place.
In Romans 6:1-21, Paul explained this spiritual funeral where the believer is ‘buried’ or submerged into water baptism and ‘resurrected’ from water baptism or the symbolical grave, as an allegory of Jesus’ physical death, burial, and resurrection from the dead.
Firstly, This is so because we must die to sin, sinful desires, false beliefs, etcetera, so sin can have absolutely no hold on, or power over us, the truly born again disciples of Christ! Without decidedly and wholeheartedly repenting from, or ‘crucifying’ our sin-nature, (Rom. 5:12,) and sinful beliefs and thoughts, (2 Cor. 10:3-5,) none of Jesus’ disciples can live in Him! Paul wrote in Galatians 2:20-21 that he “died [spiritually and emotionally to the Old Testament, outward, ceremonial law, or to legalism and religiosity] to live in Christ.” At any given time, only one king can rule in the human temple.
· Thus, Paul declared, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ Who lives in me. The life, which I now live in the flesh, [as a human on earth,] I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through [my futile human efforts to keep] the law, [or by keeping ritual ‘saving’ sacraments in church,] then Christ died in vain [for me.]”
Secondly, True believers do not have a “sinful nature” anymore! The “old man” or ‘sin nature’ that we inherited from Adam and Eve, (Rom. 5:12,) died when we were “transported from darkness into God’s Light” at our spiritual rebirth and so, it must be buried or we will stink up the whole world with perversions such as false dogma, (1 Pt. 2:9-10; Eph. 1:12-14; Col. 1:13-14.)
Paul explained in Romans 6:1-23, “…As many [believing disciples] who [spiritually] died [to their state of sin without Christ and to the lusts of the world] and were [water] baptized into Christ Jesus, were baptized into His death… so that the [former crucified ] body of sin, [the state of sin and/or ‘sin nature’ that we inherited from Adam and Eve,] might be done away with [or symbolically buried under water,] that we should no longer be slaves of sin…” (Rom. 6:1-6,12-13; 6:1-14.) We must bury the dead; (those who have sincerely accepted Christ but still have not obeyed Him to baptize themselves in water;) otherwise they drag their old, stinking corpses of sin with them wherever they go. Such undead “zombies” or unbaptized believers will infect everyone with [spiritual death or] sin. “So, reckon yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord… and present yourselves to God as alive from the dead…”
· Consequently, all those who truly surrendered to Christ can hardly wait to be water baptized as per Jesus’ own example! (Acts 8:34-39!) Only those who do not crucify the ‘old man of sin’ but instead choose to hold on to sin and sinful people in the world, are satisfied to continue believing in worthless religious doctrines and church sacraments such as the baby ‘baptism.’ Someone wisely said, “When we see the Light, we see the water [because we see Jesus and the truth of God’s Word!]” Without the True Light, people choose to ignore the water: the truth of God’s Word, and consequently, they think they can skip the water baptism of disciples, (1 Pt. 1:21; Eph. 5:25-26.) Sadly, pervertors of Jesus’ real baptism ridicule His sincere disciples as “crocodiles, dragging everyone to water…” May God forgive them and convict them of the truth of His Word; “for [it seems] they know not what they do.”
Thirdly, There must be a resurrection from this water ‘grave,’ followed by a brand new life[style] in Christ according to His full, contextual Word. Hence, “we [or rather, our old, crucified, “carnal nature of sin”] were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together [with Him] in the likeness of His death, certainly, we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection...” (Rom. 6:4-6.)
· Just as the Father blessed the completely human Man Jesus at His water baptism, Jesus’ baptism by submersion still carries the full sanction of God the Father on the new spiritual life of each of His sincerely believing disciples, (Mt. 3:13-17.) And so, Jesus’ example of the baptism was not merely commanded by Jesus, John the Baptist, Peter, Paul, all the other disciples, but it was also practiced by all Jesus’ true believers through the ages.
SCRIPTURAL WATER BAPTISM IS ALSO THE HOLY SPIRIT’S CIRCUMCISION OF THE ‘OLD MAN;’ THE “CUTTING AWAY” OF THE BODY OF SIN FROM THE BORN AGAIN HUMAN SPIRIT OF THE BELIEVER DURING WATER BAPTISM BY SUBMERSION, (Col. 2:11-15)
In reference to the discussion above of the baptism as “the funeral of the old sin nature,” (Romans 6:4-6,) Paul also taught in Colossians 2:11-15, “In Jesus you [born again believers] were also circumcised with the circumcision made without [human] hands, by putting off [or cutting away] the body of the sins of the flesh, [the old sinful nature, Rom. 5:12; 6:6-7!] by the circumcision of Christ, [at the moment you were] buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith in the working of God, Who raised Him from the dead, (Rom. 6:1-14.)
This too, proves the baptism of submersion is unadulterated Scriptural truth, as a corpse cannot be buried by sprinkling or pouring a little soil over it. Then, Paul continues in Colossians 2:11-15, “And you, [who were] dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, [the old body of sin that man inherited from the fall in Eden, which must be cut away by the Holy Spirit Himself in the true water baptism, Rom. 5:12,] He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements, [the sacramental or ritual temple law of the Old Testament,] that was against us…” This proves that Jesus completely and in full, ‘restored’ personally and sincerely born again believers on a spiritual level from the dreadful fall in the garden in Eden, when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and instantly died on a spiritual level.
Hence, in the light of Real Scriptural Truth, however fiercely indoctrinated followers of the Baptism of Regeneration would like to defend their twisted doctrine, as long as they disobey the actual Word of God, they remain unbaptised; chained to their ‘body of sin,’ as they remain spiritually uncircumcised, (Rom. 5:12; Lu. 7:29-30.)
This is why Jesus’ water baptism is a crucial, life-changing moment in the innermost being and outward life of a real believer, which can never be repeated, because one can only be born again once into the spiritual Kingdom of Jesus — just like a baby can only be born once into this world, (1 Pt. 2:9-10.) Jesus’ water baptism is a conscious, participating, spiritual burial; a spiritual circumcision, and a resurrection in Christ for sincere believers only. So that none of Jesus’ genuine believers should continue in deliberate sin, the New Covenant circumcision, which the Holy Spirit Himself performs during water baptism, pertains directly to the blood-cleansed heart or human spirit of the person, (1 Ths. 5:23.)
· It is impossible to live a spiritual life that is pleasing to God, should one remain spiritually uncircumcised; not being baptised Jesus’ way as one of His truly committed disciple/followers. Paul said in Colossians 2:8-15, “See to it that no one carries you off as a spoil or makes you captive by his so-called philosophy and intellectualism, following human tradition, [deceitful church doctrines and ways,] of the material rather than the spirit world… disregarding the teachings of Christ…” Regardless of this stern warning, millions of church members have, and still are “disregarding the teachings of Christ” in favor of human church tradition.
BAPTISM “IN THE NAME OF JESUS,” OR “IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT?”
Jesus is God Himself Who became a human being. Therefore, He commanded His sincerely believing disciples to be baptized in “the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” which is also the Name of Jesus, The Godhead of the Bible. Paul explained in Colossians 2:9-10, “In Him [Jesus] dwells [present tense] all the fullness of The Godhead [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] bodily...” In the context of the whole New Testament, the Man Jesus Christ Himself is the embodiment of The Inseparable Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!
Hebrews 1:1-3 explains that during the Old Testament dispensation, God spoke to His physical nation Old Israel through human prophets like Moses and Elijah, but in New Testament/Covenant times, “God has spoken to us, [His spiritual nation of true believers] by His Son, [Who did not simply ‘speak’ God’s Word, but always was and will be God and God’s Word Himself,] Whom He appointed Heir and lawful Owner of all things… Being the brightness of God’s glory and the express Image of His Person, [when we look at the Man Jesus, we see The Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, or God “in the flesh” of a human being;] upholding all things by the Word of His power…” (Jn. 1:1-3; Heb 1:1-14.)
However, Modulist Oneness Pentecostals, (Jesus-Only teachers,) reject the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as One God. They say the Father is God, and Jesus and the Holy Spirit were only ‘attributes’ or visible signs of God like wind and fire. This is why they disobey Jesus’ commandment to baptize disciples in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Instead, they baptize in the “Name of Jesus Only.”
We can be certain that all the instances that are described in the Book of Acts, where believers were water baptized “in the Name of Jesus,” refer to Jesus’ commandment in Matthew 28:19-20. Hence, the early believers all baptized in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, which is ‘the Name of Jesus.’ Hebrews 7:3 testifies to the following immovable fact, “[Melchizedek, king of Salem or the One God, “The (Biblical) Godhead,]” is without father, mother, or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made [to look in a physical way,] like the Son of God [or the Man Jesus Christ…]”
SHOULD WE BE DUNKED THREE TIMES IN WATER BAPTISM OR ONLY ONCE?
Scriptural baptism occurs by one short submersion of the disciple into ordinary water, (a river, the sea, swimming pool, bath, etcetera,) and it occurs once in the context of the following words, “On your own confession of Jesus Christ as your personal God, Lord, Savior and Redeemer, and at your own request, I baptize you in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!” (Mt. 28:19-20.)
Jesus, the True God of the Bible, is One God: The Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. However, many Pentecostals baptize believing disciples by submerging them three times in water: once for the Father, once for the Son, and once for the Holy Spirit, as if the Godhead can be separated into three gods. Of course, that is impossible. Jesus is One God: the inseparable Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.