WHAT IS THE CORRECT WATER BAPTISM? IS IT MATTHEW 28:19-20,…
WHAT IS THE CORRECT WATER BAPTISM? IS IT MATTHEW 28:19-20, ACTS 2:38 OR 1 CORINTHIANS 15:29???
In the Christian world, three kinds of water baptism are being used by believers in the bible. The first one is the baptism that used the words like “I baptized you in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” The second one is the baptism that used the words like “I baptized you in the name of Jesus.” And the third one is baptizing people for the dead.
Of course everytime, these words are used, the subject (person) is being immersed totally in water, and it is the belief, that after the immersion in water, the subject is now a new person. Now, it seems, that there are now three kinds of baptism, which one is right, is it the first one, or the second, or the third? Are all of them correct? Let us try to analyze this problem, and let us resort to biblical verses to find out, which one is really right.
In MATTHEW 28:19-20, it states = “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, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” = Now, we know, that the one talking here was Jesus Christ, and Jesus was directing this instruction to the remaining 11 disciples, and that includes Peter. The 11 disciples are expected to obey this command of Jesus, and not even Peter could change this command of Jesus. Believers should be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. This command was given by Jesus to His disciples before His ascension to heaven. Naturally, the person being baptized will be immersed totally in water, while proclaiming these words of baptism.
In ACTS 2:38-39, it states, == “Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of yours sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.” == In this verse, it was Peter talking to the people who are going to be baptized, and Peter was instructing them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ not in the name of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. It seems, that Peter was directly disobeying the command of Jesus Christ, since Christ said, that believers should be baptized in the name of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit, not in the name of Jesus Christ only. Now, which is which? Did Peter really meant, that when believers were immersed in water, the words that were uttered were “I baptized you in the name of Jesus Christ”? Did Peter really do this? Were believers during those times really baptized in the name of Jesus Christ? Did this kind of baptism really happened? Please continue reading, to find out what really happened.
In 1 CORINTHIANS 15:29, Apostle Paul was saying that ”why are they then baptized for the dead?” Paul was referring these words to the Gentiles not the Christians, because Paul used the word ”they”. Paul could have used the word ”we” if he was referring to the Christians.
Automatically, this kind of baptism is out of the list, since baptism has to be accepted personally. Just to cite an example, supposing your loved one died without receiving baptism, you who are still alive can be baptized in your loved one’s behalf. There are some churches that are using this kind of baptism.
Now, that only leaves two kinds of baptism. The one in Matthew 28:19-20 and Acts 2:38.
In EPHESIANS 4:4-6, it states, = “There is one body and one Spirit – just as you were called to one hope when you were called – one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” == In this verse it states, that there is only ONE baptism, one faith, and one Lord. Now, the problem is, two baptisms were mentioned in the bible, the one mentioned in MATTHEW 28:19-20, and in ACTS 2:38-39. Which of these baptisms is the correct baptism? Please take note, that the bible says, there is only one baptism, now let us try to find out which one is really correct.
In 2nd CORINTHIANS 13:14, it states, = “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” == As you would notice, during this benediction, the name of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, were used. Not only the name of Jesus Christ.
In MARK 10:39, it states, = “We can”, they answered. Jesus said to them, “You will drink the cup I drink with and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with . . .” == Definitely, in this verse, He told his disciples, that they should be baptized with the baptism that Jesus had been baptized with. The bible did not state what kind of words were used during the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist, but definitely, the words “I baptized you in the name of Jesus Christ” was not
definitely used. How can John the Baptist baptized Jesus in Jesus’s own name, it would not seem logical anymore. Though it was not mentioned in the bible, there is a great possibility that John the Baptist had baptized Jesus using the words “I baptized you in the name of God the Father”, since John the Baptist was not yet aware of the teachings of Jesus Christ. As you would notice, during those times, John the Baptist was still following the “Law of Moses”.
In ACTS 9:15, it states, = “But the Lord said to Ananias, ”Go! This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.” == Take note of the words used, ‘to carry my name’. It was Jesus speaking here, and Paul was being instructed to carry the name of Jesus to the Gentiles and to the people of Israel. When Jesus told Paul to carry his name, what does Jesus mean? Does it mean that Paul has to tell the Gentiles about Jesus only? NO! When Jesus said ‘to carry my name’ Jesus was instructing Paul to teach the Gentiles all the teachings and commandments of Jesus Christ, not only of Jesus Christ, but also everything about God the Father, the Holy Spirit, and everything about salvation. So, when we say, in the name of Jesus Christ, it refers to the teachings of Christ and His commandments. When Peter said in ACTS 2:38-39, be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, Peter did not mean that believers will be immersed in water and at the same time uttering the words, ‘I baptized you in the name of Jesus Christ.’ What Peter meant when he said be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, he means be baptized in the teachings and commandments of Jesus Christ. And if we are going to ask Jesus Christ about his teachings in baptism, definitely, Jesus Christ will answer us by saying, be baptized in ‘the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit’. So, there it is, the baptism of immersing believers in water, and uttering the words, ‘I baptized you in the name of Jesus Christ, actually did not take place. This verse was mistakenly interpreted by some religions and congregations. There is only one baptism, and that baptism is MATTHEW 28:19-20. Definitely, Peter, one of the disciples of Jesus Christ, will not disobey Jesus especially in the matter of baptism, Peter will not invent his own way of baptism. Peter will definitely used MATTHEW 28:19-20 when it comes to baptizing believers.
In COLLOSIANS 2:2-3, it states, == “My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know, the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” == In this verse, it states, that in Christ is hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. So when we say in the name of Jesus Christ, we are referring to the wisdom and knowledge of Jesus Christ. When Peter said, be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, Peter was referring to the wisdom and knowledge that is hidden in Christ.
In EPHESIANS 3:14-15, it states, = “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.” == This verse states, that all names in heaven or on earth came from the Father, even the name of Jesus Christ. So, everything came from God the Father, it would be unwise not to include the name of God the Father especially when performing baptism. To make our baptism complete, we have to use the words, ‘I baptized you in the name of God the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.’ In this manner, we are not denying the Father, or the Son, or the Holy Spirit.
In 1st JOHN 2:22-23, it states, = “Who is the liar? It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a man is the antichrist – he denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father, whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.” == Nobody wants to be an anti-Christ, isn’t it? To be an anti-Christ, definitely, your salvation is at risk. If it is really true, that the baptism using the words ‘ I baptized you in name of Jesus Christ’ really existed, then those believers who were baptized only in the name of Jesus Christ are anti-Christ. Why? Because in this kind of baptism, God the Father is being denied here. To deny God the Father, makes you an anti-Christ.
In paragraph numbered as 1, the verse that was used was MATTHEW 28: 19-20, in which it was stated that Jesus Christ was the one talking, giving the instruction that people have to be baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Perhaps, you will agree with me, that Jesus Christ is a God. Since Jesus Christ is a God, therefore, the one giving the instruction about this kind of baptism is a God. And when Jesus Christ as a God gave this instruction to the apostles, Peter was one of the apostles who were there receiving the instruction.
In paragraph numbered as 2, the verse that was used was ACTS 2: 38-39, in which it was stated that it was Peter this time who was giving the instruction to the people, that they should be baptized in the name of Jesus. Perhaps, you will agree with me that Peter was just a man, not a God.
Now, let us try to explain this issue by means of logic. Jesus Christ is a God, Peter is a man. Let me ask you this question. In obeying the doctrine about baptism, who are you going to obey? Jesus Christ who is a God, or Peter who is a man? The answer is quite simple. Of course, we are going to obey Jesus Christ because he is a God, not Peter, the man, isn’t it? If you obey Peter with regards to baptism, then it is like slapping Jesus Christ on the face, because you are giving more importance to a man. Therefore, the correct baptism then, is Matthew 28: 19-20, in which believers in God have to be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
There are some followers of Peter when it comes to baptism, that they will insist that the baptism Peter introduced is the correct baptism. They insisted that when this kind of baptism was performed, it was with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Now, is this correct, I don’t think so. I will agree on the point that it was with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and secondly, I would say, that the Holy Spirit will not do anything in contrary to the teachings of God. First of all, let us agree, that there are three of them, the God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. If you are going to read my tract entitled, ‘The Godhead (One God in 3 manifestations, One God in 3 persons)’, it was stated there, as proven by JOHN 14:28, that the God the Father is greater than all, greater than the Son, and greater than the Holy Spirit. Therefore, whatever the God the Father will say, the Son and the Holy Spirit are obliged to obey it. Let me support this by means of bible verses.
In JOHN 12: 49-50, it states = “For I have not spoken of myself, but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting; whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.”
In JOHN 14: 10, it states = “Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I speak unto you, I speak not of myself, but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.”
In JOHN 7: 16, it states = “Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine but his that sent me.”
In HEBREWS 1: 1-2, it states = “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds.”
In DEUTERONOMY 18: 18, it states = “I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.”
In paragraphs numbered, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, it is then understood that whatever Jesus Christ teaches the people when it comes to spiritual salvation, are not his own teachings, but the teachings of God the Father. God the Father was using Christ to impart his teachings to the people. Therefore, when Christ instructed the apostles to baptize believers in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, this teaching is not the words of Christ but the words of God the Father. Now, since Jesus Christ and the
Holy Spirit are under the power of God the Father, then Christ and the Holy Spirit are obliged to obey what God the Father had ordered. Therefore, it was true that the Holy Spirit was with the apostles, when they said that believers must be baptized in Jesus name. But the Holy Spirit will insists that the baptism to be used had to be MATTHEW 28: 19-20, not ACTS 2: 38-39.
In paragraph numbered 6, it is then clear, that the baptism in Jesus name did not actually transpired, but instead, Peter was referring to Matthew 28: 19-20. Please read this paragraph 6, to understand it more fully.
There are some spiritual congregations that would say that baptism is not important for our spiritual salvation, that believers are not obliged to undergo through this process. And they will say, that it depends upon the believers if they wanted to be baptized or not. If believers do not want to be baptized, then it is okay, if they want to be baptized, then it is also okay. Now, is this doctrine biblical? I don’t think so. Please read the following verses.
In JOHN 3: 3-5, it states = “In reply Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” “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!” Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.” = These verses strictly state, that unless you are baptized in water and spirit, then you will never enter the kingdom of God. That makes the baptism in water obligatory for believers. Of course, this baptism in water is only obligatory during the Christian dispensation, because this law is part of the Law of Christ. This baptism in water does not cover the believers during the Old Testament.
Others believed that baptism in water is not important, nor obligatory, because they will argue that the thief hanging on the cross with Jesus Christ, was not baptized in water, yet Jesus Christ had promised him that he will be with Christ in heaven. To get a clearer picture of this incident, let us read the following verses.
In LUKE 23: 42-43, it states = “Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ Jesus answered him, ‘I tell you the truth today, you will be with me in paradise.” = The story goes that there were two thieves hanging on the cross with Jesus, one on the left, and the other on the right. At the beginning these two thieves were mocking Jesus, but the other thief before he died, had developed his faith in Jesus, and requested Jesus to bring him also to heaven. Jesus complied with this thief’s request, and promised the thief that he will inherit heaven. Now, some believers will say, “Look Brother Bert, that thief was brought to heaven, without being baptized in water, therefore, we could enter heaven without being baptized in water. My brothers and sisters in Christ, we have to consider the situation. The thief was hanging on the cross, almost dead, will Christ tell him to get down from the cross, then be baptized in water, then go back hanging on the cross again? That would seem to be out of logic, isn’t it? We, as Christians, we are not hanging on the cross with Christ, we have all the time in the world to be baptized, nothing is preventing us not to be baptized, therefore, be baptized by all means!
In ACTS 22: 16, it states = “And now, what are you waiting for? Get up and be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.” = There are some Christians that do not believe, that God will forgive your sins during baptism. Oh, well, this verse contradicts that belief. Baptism will wash your sins away, therefore, go ahead and be baptized.
In GALATIANS 3: 26-27, it states = “You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” = This is one more verse, that will prove that baptism is very important. For us to be accepted by Christ, we have to cloth ourselves with Christ, and in order to do that, we have to undergo the ritual of baptism.
Now, who are the people that are supposed to be baptized? As long as that person is at the age of reason, or as long as that person already knows what is right and what is wrong, and as long as that person knows how to repent of his wrongdoings, then he could be baptized. A small child as some religions are doing, are not supposed to be baptized, since that child does not even know how to repent, and that child does not even know what faith in God means. To be baptized, that person must know what he is entering into. He had repented of his sins, and he must have faith in God. Baptism is very important in the life of a Christian. There are still so many biblical verses that would support the claim, that the right baptism is MATTHEW 28: 19-20, and that baptism is needed if you want to inherit the kingdom of God. But for the meantime, these verses will suffice.