Faithlife Sermons

The Doctrine of Baptism

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The act and role of baptism are critical steps in the discipleship of the believer.

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The Beginning of Baptism

Initiatory rite in Judaism for proselytes
Jewish purification rituals
Mark 1:1–8 NASB95
The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. As it is written in Isaiah the prophet: Behold, I send My messenger ahead of You, Who will prepare Your way; The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ready the way of the Lord, Make His paths straight.’ ” John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. And all the country of Judea was going out to him, and all the people of Jerusalem; and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins. John was clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist, and his diet was locusts and wild honey. And he was preaching, and saying, “After me One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to stoop down and untie the thong of His sandals. I baptized you with water; but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
Mark 1:1-8
No information on the when John received the instruction to baptize.

This was a radical departure from the contemporary practice of Judaism.

One word regarding the process of baptism, it is clear from this and other passages that the method of baptism was by immersion.

The Basis of Baptism

Romans 6:3–11 NASB95
Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Romans 6:3-11

Union with Christ

Notice all of the times that we see the phrases with Christ, in Christ, in Him, with Him.

The Barrier to Baptism

Acts 8:35–38 NASB95
Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him. As they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 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.” 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.

“If you believe with all your heart”

This was a belief that expressed a choice to embrace what was true of Jesus

Jesus is the Son of God.

Jesus is the promised Messiah.

Jesus is the source of forgiveness, new life and eternal fellowship with the Father in Heaven.

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