Bible Discussion Thread

  • Tdianne - 1 month ago
    Is the sprinkling of water a true baptism?
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hi Tdianne,

    As to your question you have received several answers, my understanding in the Bible baptism is done only by immersion as the word means. As Jesse said sprinkling did not start until the 1300s and it was for the reason it was so inconvenient. So, this was done just because of convenience's sake, nothing Biblical about it. I agree with Giannis, and we must believe as Jesus said in Mark 16:16.

    All we do is to be done in our Lord Jesus's name, Colossians 3:16-17. Many use Matthew 28:19 but we also see in the rest of Scripture that a person who is baptized in Jesus' name is someone who believes in Jesus as Savior, the Messiah, the Son of God who for us died, was buried, and was resurrected we acknowledge this by being baptized in His name, Acts 2:38 Acts 8:12 Acts 8:16 Acts 10:48 Acts 19:5 Acts 22:16 Romans 6:3 Galatians 3:27 Colossians 2:12 Ephesians 4:5.

    Paul shows the importance of being baptized in the name of Jesus, Acts 19:1-6. God has placed Jesus and His name above all that is in heaven and earth, Matthew 28:18 Philippians 2:9-11. Salvation only comes in His name Acts 4:12 Romans 10:13. The name of Jesus is the source of power and authority for healing, miracles, and deliverance, Mark 16:17 Luke 10:17 Acts 4:7 Acts 4:30 Acts 16:18.

    We are to give thanks in Jesus's name, Ephesians 5:20. Our faith is through Him and in His name, Acts 3:16. We must believe in Jesus, John 3:16 John 6:47 Acts 16:31 1 John 3:23 1 John 5:13. Whatever we ask for we are to ask in His name, John 14:13-14. We are to pray to the Father in His name, James 5:14. Jesus is our priest and the only mediator between God and men, 1 Timothy 2:5.

    God bless,

  • Tdn2272 - In Reply - 1 month ago
    I believe that when we are born, we are born from the womb which is full of water. We are born into sin, because of Adam and Eve sinning. Being Baptised is being reborn into the Glory of God. So, total submersion would be a cleansing of the whole body under water just as we were born into the world through total immersion. Total submersion is being completely reborn in Christ, and is also a public proclamation to the world that we are being born a Child of God cleansed throughly of our sins through total submersion. Again, this is just my belief but to me it makes sense
  • Jesse - In Reply - 1 month ago

    (Part 3):

    The Jews had no idea why they immersed 3 times for their baptism. But after Messiah came, and when Messiah gave the believing Jews the commission to go out and preach the gospel to the Gentiles, He said, baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, three times for the Trinity. Very interesting background!

    By now, you might be thinking I really haven't answered your question. Well, when I think of true baptism, I think of the ministry of Jesus Christ. According to scripture, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is the Lord's ministry. Baptism means two things, cleansing and identification.

    When Christ comes into my life, I am cleansed because He sends His Spirit into my life. Jesus' ministry was to baptize people with the Holy Spirit, not water baptism. The qualification for belonging to Christ isn't what I experience in the past, nor what my decision in the past was, but rather it is based on the presence of Christ in me.

    God's Spirit in me is the guarantee that I belong to the Lord. Water baptism comes after salvation. True baptism is when Jesus baptizes us with His Spirit. Is there a right way and wrong way to be water baptized. That's something each individual should decide for themselves. It's between them and the Lord. I say full immersion because that's the way the early church did it!

    Blessings to you!
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Jesse, well said, it is the Spirit that baptizes us and indwells us.

    One thing, the Lutherans do not sprinkle-they pour water over the head of the one being baptized three times saying the words "I baptize you in the name of the Father (pour water) and the Son (pour water) and of the Holy spirit (pour water). I think this is the way that Episcopalians baptize, Catholics, and other "non-immersers" I don't know who sprinkles.

    But in any case, our baptism is our testament of what God has done in us through His

    Spirit to unify us with Christ and the church.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 1 month ago

    Sorry, I should have asked in my other reply to you. Is what you're telling me, is this the way the Lutherans baptize today? What I was told, and what I shared with Tdianne was how they baptized around the year 1600. If you have different information on how they did it back then, can you share that with me? Thanks, off to bed now. I am two hours later than where you're at!

    God bless!!!
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hello Jesse,

    It is the practice of the Lutherans today to pour water over the head of the over the one being baptized. I do not know how they did in the 1500's when Lutheranism began.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 1 month ago

    Thanks for sharing that info on Lutheran baptism. I never actually witnessed how the Lutherans performed their baptisms. What I shared was something that was passed on to me years ago.

    Blessings to you and congrats on your new addition to the family. Grandchildren are such a blessing. I have two, a grandson and granddaughter.
  • Tdn2272 - In Reply - 1 month ago
    I hope i am not interfering when i post my beliefs on baptism, but i believe baptism is of a great importance in our Christian Walk. As i understand it it is as such. When we are born, we are submersed in water in our mothers womb. Now, since man and woman sinned in the garden of eden, when we are born, we are born into sin. I understand about reaching the age of accountability and all of that, but here is my two cents worth. Because we are born on this earth of woman we are born into sin. When we are baptised we are again submersed into water completely, to be born again into fellowship with Christ. Thus acknowledging to the world that we are no longer of this world, we are just in this world. Our submersion into the water allows us to be born again into Christ. Baptism is also a way of telling and showing the world that we are Children of Christ, and baptism is proof of that. Baptism washes away our sins and we begin a new life with Christ as a baby and learn as a baby growing continually in the knowledge and Glory of Christ. I pray each of you grow continually in Christ as i am attempting to so Christ can receive the Glory. Amen
  • Jesse - In Reply - 1 month ago

    (Part 2):

    Now, when we get into the New Testament, we learn about the ministry of John the Baptist known as Yochanan ha Matbil, John the baptizer. The immerser is the literal translation from the Greek.

    Also, John's baptism is different from Christian baptism. John's baptism only had to do with the Hebrew or Jewish people. They had to come down and be baptized by John to show their repentance in order to receive the Messiah. Baptism amongst the Jewish people meant change. Anything that was a major change in their life, they had a baptism for it.

    Also, something very interesting about Jewish baptism is that the Jews, they immerse. It wasn't until around 1300 A.D. that the Catholic Church began sprinkling. Around 1600 is when the Lutheran group, who eventually became the Lutherans, began to use sprinkling. The Jews used immersion. Everything had to be immersed and you had to be immersed three times. Even to this day the Jews immerse three times in their baptism.

    Today, the reason why many immerse once is because Constantine decided around 313 AD to change it from three times to one. He hated the Jews, so whatever the Jews did, he changed it. He did this just to get back at the Jews. So, Constantine says the Jews dunk three times, so we are going to dunk once! And that is where we got our baptism today.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hello Tdianne,

    (Part 1):

    I would like to share my thoughts concerning your question. You ask about a true baptism. What is a true baptism? What does that even mean? If we are only speaking of water baptism, there are so many different beliefs on water baptism in the church today. Some sprinkle, some immerse, some dunk once, and some dunk three times. Some baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and some say the only valid baptism is in "Jesus' name only." So, where does that leave us? It leaves us "scratching our heads" and asking ourselves which one is the correct way?

    Before I go any further, I just want to say that whatever way a person chooses to be water baptized is up to them and the Lord. I myself believe it should be by full immersion as it was in the early church. But this is just my belief and please allow me to explain why I believe this way.

    If I go all the way back to the book of Exodus, I see that baptism began with Moses. Now the person who was doing the baptizing, he wouldn't touch anybody. He's just the witness. Baptizing in those days was that you go under yourself and come up yourself. The witness is just there to say you didn't make it because some part of your body didn't go completely under the water. It could have been a person's ear or maybe their hair was not under the water. The witness would be there to make sure they went all the way under the water. If not, they had to do it all over.
  • Giannis - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hello Tdianne

    My belief differs from GiGi's as I believe that a person has to be immersed in water during the water baptism.

    In Colossians 2:11-12 it says

    "11. In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

    12. Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead."

    In Romans 6:3:7 it says:

    "3. Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

    4. 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.

    5. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

    6. 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.

    7.For he that is dead is freed from sin.".

    So the baptism in water signifies the burial of the old sinful man and the raise of the new man. The baptism is actually the burial of the old dead sinful man. To be buried with Christ into His death one has to be fully immersed in His death/grave/water.

    Sorry but sprinkling with water, in my opinion, means nothing. On top of that the word baptism which originates from greek means immersion/going under. In the Book of Acts (9:26-40) we can read the story with Philipp and that eunuch. Another story is John's baptism. In the NT we don't see anybody to be water baptized by sprinkling. GBU
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago

    part 2.

    Just to finish up my thought. If someone who was baptized as an infant grows up believing in Jesus and knows the truth about how they are saved through Him, as I was the case for me, do not need to be rebaptized, but can if they wish. Someone who was baptized as an infant who grew up in faith and departs from the faith, they may wish to be re-baptized when they return to the Lord. It isn't baptism that is the heart of the matter, but regeneration and confession of one's faith in Jesus as Savior that is most important. How God brings that about in each person may differ in areas of: age at which one consciously believes the gospel, church practices chosen by one's parents when one was an infant or a child, etc,

    I am glad I was baptized as an infant by parents who believed that God does work in and through baptism of their children, because whatever is not of faith is not valid. God honors the concern for their childrens' salvation and intention to bring them up in the faith. The Holy Spirit works in the lives of children baptized young to keep them growing in faith He provides.

    Salvation is all of God and not of man, so we should have peace about the means of baptism, trusting God loves all He draws to Him whether from infancy and chlldhood or later as teens or adults. We can acknowledge that God is working out His will in the lives of such and know that He continues His work of shaping believers over time.
  • Giannis - In Reply - 1 month ago
    GiGi, 2/2

    The other thing often people say is that it is not important to be water baptized, it is the baptism in the Spirit that matters. Well, no. Those are two completely different things. Doing the first does not exlude us from the second and vise versa. Water baptism is something we have to do and the Spirit baptism is something that God has to do. We obey to God and God sends His grace to us. This is how this relationship works. It is a covenant, which means that both parts have to do their obligations so that that agreement is valid. Anyway, I know you agree to most I have written and if there are some things we are not in agreement it doesn't relly matter, we are still brother and sister and we are both going to Heaven. When I go up there one of the first things I will do is asking the Lord all my questions. GBU
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago

    I agree with all you have written here.

    Although I was also baptized as an infant, when I was in college I did choose to be baptized by immersion as I wanted to make that choice to obey what the Lord said, to believe, repent and be baptized. Doing so did not invalidate my infant baptized, yea, it affirmed it as my parents presenting me to God to work His grace in me. And that did happen. But as an adult, I wished to obey Jesus' command for myself.

    Some churches refuse to re-baptize one who was baptized as an infant, believing that speaks against the efficacy of the former baptism. I do not think like this. The Bible does not say anything about this matter, neither recommending or forbidding.

    One thing we do not know about the NT church is whether infants and children were baptized when a whole family is said to have been baptized. So, we cannot really say that it was or was not practiced. Jesus did say to not hinder the children/infants to come to Him, so that is one indication that we are to present our children to Him to be baptized and be initiated into the body of Christ.

    When my sons were born, we did not baptize them as we wished for them to be baptized when they understood and believed the gospel and desired to be baptized. That never happened for them. But I do pray persistently for God to return them to faith and trust in Him.

    Also, I have seen many people who were baptized as infants/children who have walked away from the Lord. I do believe that God will draw them back to Him at some point, but in the mean time, parents should pray persistently for their children to come to Jesus as adults.

    So, which is the better route for Christian parents to take? I am not sure. In my life, being baptized as an infant showed its fruits from a young age as I have always known that God loves me and that Jesus died for my sins to save me. He has worked in my life from the start and kept me in the true faith. He provided His grace and mercy to me.
  • Giannis - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hi GiG,i 1/2

    I know that the churches eventually departed from the practices of the early church but this is why we read the scriptures, to go back to the practices and beliefs of that ancient church, isn't it? Otherwise why reading the Bible? So when we see that we do something wrong then we must correct ourselves, as individuals and also as a whole church. If we think like, it doesn't matter this, it doesn't matter that, it doesn't matter the other and the other, then we end up at something completely different. If you draw two lines that are not precisely parallel, in the begining we can't see any difference, but after a distance one goes to the US and the other goes to Greece. I believe you understand what I am saying. And most of the todays churches have gone thousand miles away from that early church.

    I agree with the anabaptists at this point. A valid baptism is through the fully immersion in water. Infant baptism? In my church it also isn't considered valid. I was baptized as an infant in the Greek Orthodox church but when I was born again at the age of 34 I had to bury that old Giannis in the grave which is represented by water and raise up to walk a new life. Anyway.

    The other question that often people ask is "do I have to be baptized to be saved"? And the answers are sometimes like " God saves and not my effords/works", which for me is something misleading. Why? Because it gives the impression to people that they can disobey God's commandements and still get away with it. Doesn't the Bible command us to be baptized? Yes, it does. So why do we still talk about it and not just do it straightaway. Isn't disobedience to God considered a sin? Yes it is. So if I don't repent and do the right thing, am I still eligible for His Kingdom? ie if God tells me not to steal and I ignore Him and keep stealing and don't repent, am I still going to Heaven? I doubt that.

    See part 2
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hello Giannis, I do agree with you that baptism should be by immersion most of the time, But in the years following the apostles in the early second century, there were allowances made for baptizing people when deeper water was not available. Unfortunately, over the centuries, baptism by full immersion was slowly fazed out to the point that sprinkling became the norm over immersion. The Greek word for baptism, as you said does mean to immerse. During the reformation years, the anabaptists began to reinstitute full immersion for baptism. The problem arose in their declaring that only those fully immersed in "believer's baptism" were truly baptized validly. Therefore meaning that all who had been baptized by sprinkling and/or as infants and children were not validly baptized and so needed to be rebaptized. This stance cause a great deal of division within the reformation church.

    I wish that in today's churches that baptism by immersion was the norm, but this is not the case and I am not one to demand as being invalid any of the baptisms that occurred in ways that differ from the anabaptists then and of today. The normal ways that the apostles baptized and celebrated the Lord's Supper have slowly changed over the early centuries to the point that we do not know how they really performed these ordinances. So, I think the important thing is that after one is converted that they should seek to be baptized as a profession and witness to the saving work of the Holy Spirt inn regeneration and of Jesus on the cross, and of the Father who draws us to Christ. Anyone who is old enough to be aware of their conversion to Christ can make the choice to be baptized. But many people die after conversion and before they were baptized and that does not exclude them from the kingdom of God. Also, those who were baptized as infants and come to understand their conversion do not need to be re-baptized as the anabaptists insist. They can if they wish. see part 2
  • GiGi - In Reply - 1 month ago

    If you were baptized into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, AND you believe in Jesus as Lord and Savior, the baptism is valid, whether by immersion or sprinkling.

Do you have a Bible comment or question?

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