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What We Believe… About Baptism

What Does The Bible Say About Baptism?

Below you will see a list of passages from the New Testament that speak about baptism.  With each of these passages, we must ask ourselves what is God saying?  Not, what do my parents think or say?  Or, what does my church teach?  Or, how does my church tradition explain the Bible?

Nope.

Ultimately, we will all stand before God and one question He might ask is, “What did you do with what I gave you?”

Consider: Luke 12:48b (NLT) ~ “(48) When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.”

God has given us His Word.  The Bible is our standard and guide and we must measure everything up to it.

 

Matthew 28:18-20 ~ ”(18) Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  (19) Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (20) and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.  And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

An interesting note about the word “baptizing” in this passage; the Greek word is “baptizō” which means:
1. to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
2. to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one’s self, bathe
3. to overwhelm

Check out this concordance entry from Blue Letter Bible (which includes a great pickle reference!): http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G907&t=NIV

Romans 6:3-11 ~ ”(3) Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  (4) We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.  (5) If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection.  (6) For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin – (7) because anyone who has died has been freed from sin.  (8) Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.  (9) For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.  (10) The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.  (11) In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

Acts 2:36-38 ~ ”(36) ‘Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.’  (37) When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, ‘Brothers, what shall we do?’  (38) Peter replied, ‘Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.  And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’”

Colossians 2:9-12 ~ ”(9) For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, (10) and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority.  (11) In him you were also circumcised, in the putting off of the sinful nature, not with a circumcision done by the hands of men but with the circumcision done by Christ, (12) having been buried with him in baptism and raised with him through your faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead.”

Mark 16:14-16 ~ ”(14) Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.  (15) He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.  (16) Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.’”

1 Peter 3:18-22 ~ ”(18) For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.  He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, (19) through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison (20) who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.  In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, (21) and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God.  It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, (22) who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.”

Acts 22:12-16 ~ ”(12) ‘A man named Ananias came to see me. He was a devout observer of the law and highly respected by all the Jews living there.  (13) He stood beside me and said, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight!’  And at that very moment I was able to see him.  (14) ‘Then he said: ‘The God of our fathers has chosen you to know his will and to see the Righteous One and to hear words from his mouth.  (15) You will be his witness to all men of what you have seen and heard.  (16) And now what are you waiting for?  Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.’”

Acts 8:35-39 (NASB) ~ “(35) Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him.  (36) As they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?”  (37) [ And Philip said, "If you believe with all your heart, you may."  And he answered and said, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God."]  (38) And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him.  (39) When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; and the eunuch no longer saw him, but went on his way rejoicing.”

Acts 2:41 ~ ”(41) Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.”

Acts 8:12 ~ “(12) But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.”

Acts 16:29-34 ~ “(29) The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas.  (30) He then brought them out and asked, ‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’  (31) They replied, ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.’  (32) Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house.  (33) At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptized.  (34) The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole family.”

1 Corinthians 12:12-13 ~ ”(12) The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body.  So it is with Christ.  (13) For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.”

Ephesians 4:4-6 ~ “(4) There is one body and one Spirit–just as you were called to one hope when you were called– (5) one Lord, one faith, one baptism; (6) one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

Galatians 3:26-27 ~ ”(26) You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, (27) for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”

Titus 3:4-7 ~ ”(4) But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, (5) he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.  He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, (6) whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, (7) so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”

John 3:3-5 ~ “(3) In reply Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.’  (4) ’How can a man be born when he is old?’ Nicodemus asked.  ‘Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!’  (5) Jesus answered, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.’”

Acts 19:1-6 ~ “(1) While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus.  There he found some disciples (2) and asked them, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?’  They answered, ‘No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.’  (3) So Paul asked, ‘Then what baptism did you receive?’  ‘John’s baptism,’ they replied.  (4) Paul said, ‘John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance.  He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.’  (5) On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus.  (6) When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.”

Acts 10:44-48 ~ “(44) While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message.  (45) The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.  (46) For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.  Then Peter said, (47) ‘Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water?  They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.’  (48) So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.  Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.”

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