We are excited that you have chosen to take the step of obedience in water baptism. This step was so significant that many in the early Church paid for this obedience to God’s will with their lives. Here is a brief summary of what this step means in the life of a Christian believer.
1. BAPTISM IS A STEP OF OBEDIENCE
Mat 28:19-20 (KJV) 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 end of the world. Amen.
- Following Jesus is not optional
- Outward sign of an inward work
- Something already happened; they are merely testifying to that reality
- It is not salvation – there’s more
2. BAPTISM INVOLVES IDENTIFICATION
Rom 6:1-3 (KJV) What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
- Our baptism identifies us with the one the world hates, and crucified!
- If you’re doing it right, you’re gonna make some enemies!
- But don’t unnecessarily offend (Mat 18.7)
3. BAPTISM MEANS WE LOSE SOME THINGS
- We are to lose our lives (our self-will) in Christ:
Phil 3:8-10 (KJV) Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
- We lose our “need” to sin:
Rom 6:6-7 (KJV) Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.
- We lose our attachment to our old lives:
Rom 6:21-22 (KJV) What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.
Whatever you take in the water you can leave there at the bottom!
4. BAPTISM MEANS WE GAIN SOME THINGS!
Rom 6:4 (KJV) Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into 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.
- New Life is only available in Christ!
- God is the god of many chances – He does not give up on us, even when we give up on one another – or ourselves!
- God never has to pretend
- When we forgive, we bear a loss, and can’t fix the wrong, especially if it’s serious
- Repeated forgiveness makes us lose respect for the one forgiven;
- God has no such burden, because he has the power to change us!
- When He deals with us, it’s on the basis of His son’s perfect work – and when everything goes wrong: He can raise the dead!
5. BAPTISM INVOLVES TRANSFORMATION
1 Cor 6:11 (KJV) And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
We are baptized in the Lord Jesus’ Name:
Acts 8:16 …they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
And To be baptized “in the name of the Lord Jesus” means to:
Mat 28:19 Go therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit
…be baptized “in the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit.” This is clarification, not contradiction. One is the what; the other how.
BAPTIZED IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT
I. We are baptized in the Name of the FATHER.
This means we are sons of God the Eternal Father, with all the privileges that come with a relationship of such a person as the Father-God.
As sons it is our natural portion that we mature into all that the Father’s image has intended for us.
This means that we have died to all our previous relationships and confidence. From now on our life is dependent upon Him as our source, our supply, and our provision.
All that His Name stands for before the Father belongs to the believer.
We are baptized in the legal right to use the Name, into the legal privileges of that Name, and into all the responsibility of a son, vested with the prerogatives of that mighty Name.
II. We are baptized in the Name of the SON; The Lord Jesus Christ. [as BRETHREN]
When I am baptized in Christ, I “put on Christ.” I am now legally before the world, and before heaven, a Christian.
In this sense, baptism is equivalent to marriage. When a wife puts on marriage, she takes her husband’s name and enters into her husband’s possessions and has legal rights in her husband’s home.
Similarly, when a believer is baptized into the Name of Christ, he puts on all that is in Christ. He not only puts on the Name, but takes his legal rights and privileges in Christ as well.
When a wife is married into the name of the husband, she is married into his wealth, honor, and glory and becomes identified with him all that he was or ever will be.
So, when we are baptized into the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we are baptized into all that Name stands for: all the wealth, honor, power, and all the past, present, and future glory.
All that Name stands for in heaven is ours; all the mighty victories He won in His death, suffering, and conquest in hell and His resurrection are ours.
He won no victory, He won no triumph in his substitutionary work that was not for the benefit of those united to Him in baptism.
When He said, “All authority is given unto Me in heaven and in earth,” and “I send you out as heralds” then that authority He had is ours.
We stand as His representatives; we go out into this world bearing His Name.
Now, to use this Name does not require any special or unusual faith because it is ours.
As believers, all the riches and grace are ours.
No special additional action on the part of God is required; no special act of preparation on our part is necessary when some great crisis arises.
That Name is ours, given legally to us to use against the host of God’s enemies, and we stand clothed in the rights, privileges, and powers of the sons of God.
We do not have to exercise any conscious faith.
Our role is to obediently identify with His Name.
III. We are baptized in the Name of the HOLY SPIRIT. [as SAINTS]
This means we are saints, with all the resources that belong to those who walk after the Spirit.
We rely on the same source of divine supply that the Lord Jesus Christ Himself relied upon.
- His wisdom is to take the place of my ignorance;
- His strength is to take the place of my weakness;
- His goodness is to take the place of my failures.
In other words, I am so fully identified and completely at one with Him that I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.
We are baptized into
- His righteousness,
- His resurrection,
- His power,
- His glory.
- Now, His righteousness is ours;
- His grace is ours;
- His love is ours;
- His power is ours;
- He Himself is ours.
- How rich he has made us!
We bear His Name, and His Name bears us!
Matthew 28:19-20(RSV) “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.”
There are three baptisms mentioned in scripture: body, Spirit, water.
In each baptism, there are three components to consider: the agent baptizing; the person being baptized; the element into which the person is being baptized. Each is unique, but the common thread in each case is that the believer is being “placed” into something.
Q: Why do you “place” things into containers?
- Distinction; separation
- Safe-keeping; care
1. BAPTISM INTO THE BODY OF CHRIST
1 Cor. 12:13 “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”
Baptism into the Body takes place at the salvation of every believer.
At the moment a person is saved, God the Holy Spirit takes the believer and baptizes them into the Body of Christ.
This happens whether one is aware of it or not, because the Lord declares that if we are not baptized into him we “don’t really belong to Him” (Romans 8.9)
- Agent: the Holy Spirit
- Person: the Believer
- Element: the Body of Christ
2. BAPTISM INTO (called “with”) THE HOLY SPIRIT
John 1:33 “And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom you shall see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizes with the Holy Ghost.”
This was unavailable in the Old Covenant; only NT – a privilege.
While the Spirit would come upon Old Testament believers, it was only for service for a short period of time.
No other religion’s god had ever so committed himself to man on such a level; the Lord desires to be present within His people:
2 Corinthians 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
- Agent: Jesus
- Person: the Believer
- Element: the Holy Spirit
3. BAPTISM INTO WATER
Matthew 28:19 “Go therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:”
We are instructed to “disciple-ize” all nations, and the process of discipleship should include water baptism. Any believer can baptize another believer, and may do so at any time after first believing. There is no requirement of time, age , or other artificial qualification; believers may baptize believers.
1 With regard to children, at Lighthouse out of respect for the parent(s) we have adopted a policy of requesting the blessing of the parent of youth between the ages of 12 to 18. Or, if the approval may not be obtained, then we will seek at least the permission of the parent. In the case that parent will not give approval or permission, we will still baptize a young person who has reached 12 years of age and inform the parent of our spiritual intentions.
It is in the interest of the greater good of peace with and respect for the parents, we have made the decision not to baptize a child under 12 whose parent(s) do not grant their permission.