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Sacred ordinance of water baptism

October 26, 2013
By Pastor Stephen W. Pyle, - Elkins Church of God of Prophecy , The Inter-Mountain

KJV: Matthew 3:13-17: "Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbid him saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him.

"And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying This is my beloved Son, in whom 'I am' well pleased." Reference also: Mark 1:8-11; Luke 3:21-22; and John 1:24-34.

Mark 16:16: "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned." Acts 1:5: "For John truly baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence."

Acts 2:38: "Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ (or 'through' His name) for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." Acts 2:41: "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls."

Acts 8:12: Philip preached God's kingdom and Jesus Christ. Both men and women believed and were baptized. Acts 8:13: Simon Magnus is baptized. Acts 8:36-39: The eunuch is baptized. Acts 10:44-48: Cornelius and his household receive salvation, sanctification, the baptism of the Holy Spirit with tongues, and water baptism. "For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God."

"Then answered Peter. Can any forbid water that these should be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded them to be 'baptized' in (through) the name of the Lord" (see Acts 11:16).

Acts 16:14-15: Lydia and family were water baptized. In Acts 16:29-33: The jailor and all in his house were born again and water baptized.

Acts 18:8: "And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized." (see also Acts 19:4-5). 1st Corinthians 1:12-16, Verses 13-15: "Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius. Lest any should say that I had baptized in my own name."

Dear hearts, we shouldn't live in sin after completely praying through, and are water baptized! Christ tells the backslider in Revelation 2:4 and in verse 5, "Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and to the first works (including water baptism); or I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent."

Romans 6:1-14 describes that we are dead to sin, and buried with Him by baptism unto death and should no longer live in sin. "Therefore we are buried with him by baptism unto death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of is death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection" (verses 4-5).

Clergymen bring a "living" and "breathing" blood bought, born again in Christ, baptismal candidate into the water, stand them upright, and they cross their arms. We then declare the candidate has received Christ's salvation and in His likeness is freed from past sin. With arms crossed, and the baptismal candidate holding their nostrils closed, we lower them into the water, backwards, completely immersed and declaring, "We baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." We then resurface.

The crossing of the arms represents the death of Christ, or as we see a person's arms crossed in the casket. The lowering backwards represents the burial with Christ, and the resurfacing upward from under the water, represents the resurrection of Christ. In other words, you are baptized into the Death, Burial and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The false, biblically erroneous, ancient and modern teaching and practice of "Baptism For The Dead," is only mentioned in 1st Corinthians 15:29.

"Else what shall they do which are baptized for dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are we then baptized for the dead ?" Without Christ's resurrection we're still dead in sin without redemption, eternally lost, without hope. If the dead rise not, why baptize with water?

Today's Dictionary Of The Bible is quoted: "Some also regard the statement here as an allusion to the strange practice which began as it is said to prevail at Corinth, in which a person was baptized in the place of others; who had died before being baptized. To him it was hoped some of the benefits of that rite would be extended. This they think may have been one of the erroneous customs which Paul went to Corinth to set in order."

To water baptize in proxy for any deceased person serves no eternal purpose. "It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27). A brief conclusion to this false practice can be observed in the complete context of the 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians which deals only with faith or unbelief in the resurrection of Christ.

Verses 20-22: "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept. For since by man came death (1st Adam), by man came also the resurrection of the dead (last Adam, Christ). For in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall be made alive." Paul remarks in verse 31: "I die daily." We are crucified with Christ, and cease from sin. Our will must die daily. We carry our cross, and follow Jesus.

The Anabaptists, or "re-Baptists," as well as most reforming, evangelical, Wesley holiness, and Pentecostal groups negate 'innocent infant' baptism. Christ was circumcised on the eighth day. Later, he was taken in Simeon's arms (not sprinkled) and presented to the Lord (see Luke 2:25-35). He was baptized only as an adult, by John in Jordan around the age of 30!

The symbols of fire (burning bush, Moses); water (Jesus, the living water, John 4); and wind (at Pentecost); all represent Jehovah God the Father, God the Son Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Spirit. In Earth, The Spirit, the water, and the blood agree.

By faith, Noah believed and obeyed God when he was told to build the ark. The flood waters were connected with the salvation of his family. 1st Peter 3:21-22; "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us, (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ."

Only Christ's blood cleanses us from all sin. Water is involved in demonstrating our faith in Jesus Christ. If you are not "born again" by the blood of Jesus Christ, being water baptized does not save you. While Noah and his family were on board the ark, he sent out a dove thrice; finding no rest the first time; bringing an olive branch (peace) on the second return; then never returning again to Noah, whose name means "rest and comfort."

We understand the Holy Spirit's landing in the form of a dove on Jesus. Here in a symbol of the dove from Noah's ark, has returned in metaphor. The ark also represents the Church and it's founder: Jesus Christ, who is our eternal rest and comfort. Matthew 28:18-20: "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

"Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the ends of the world. Amen."

All parts of the triune Godhead are represented at Christ's water baptism in Jordan. The Father, Almighty Jehovah God, speaks. The Holy Spirit lights as a dove' and the visible eternal, living Christ, are all at once manifested. "For there are three that bear record in heaven, The Father, The Word (Christ), and the Holy Ghost, and these three are one" (1st John 5:7).

We, therefore, must water baptize (immersion) by declaration: "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost (or Spirit)." And it is all accomplished through God's eternal Son, Jesus Christ, who is working our eternal salvation. Amen.



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