Hebrews 6:1-2 “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms…”
Baptism = G907/G908 – Immersion, submersion.
✦ After professing our belief in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, we then obey Jesus’s command that all who believe and are baptized shall be saved (Mark 16:16). Baptism demonstrates our identification with Christ’s death through symbolic death to our old selves going down into the water (as Christ into the grave) and being raised to newness of life (as Christ was resurrected).
✚ Rom 6:1-4 “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 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.”
✦ Jesus demonstrated His own faith when being baptized by John, saying that it becomes us (i.e. is appropriate, suitable) to “fulfill all righteousness…”
✚ Matt 3:13-17 “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. 16 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: 17 and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
✦ We are not baptized into a denomination or specific church but into Christ.
✚ 1 Cor 1:12-13 “Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?”
✚ Gal 3:26-27 “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”
✦ Peter declares the act of baptism when the people ask “What must we do?” after being convicted of their sin.
✚ Acts 2:37-41 “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. 40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. 41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”
✦ Paul confirms the same thing.
✚ Acts 19:2-6: “…he said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. 3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. 4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. 5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.”
✦ Phillip and the Eunuch share the same understanding of the need for baptism.
✚ Acts 8:36-38: “And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? 37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. 38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.”
✦ The recurring command throughout the New Testament is to be baptized in the name of Jesus.
✚ Acts 2:37-38 “ Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
✚ Acts 8:16 “(for as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)”
✚ Acts 19:5 “When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.”
✚ See also: Acts 22:16; 1 Cor 1:15; Col 3:17
✦ Paul’s Baptism: Acts 9:17-18
✦ All new believers were baptized: Acts 2:41; Acts 8:12; Acts 8:38; Acts 10:47-48; Acts 16:15; Acts 16:33; Acts 18:8; Acts 19:5; Acts 22:16
✦ Being baptized in the Spirit of God is the “born-again” experience.
✚ John 3:5-6 “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
✦ Without the Spirit of God indwelling us, we are not “sons.” (Read whole of Rom ch 8)
✚ Rom 8:9 “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”
✚ John 1:12-13 “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
✚ Rom 8:14 “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”
✦ Evidence of being filled with the Spirit
✚ Misconception: That we must speak in tongues to prove that we are filled with the Spirit of God. This is a gift – one gift – and not a firm evidence that we’ve been born again.
✦ Power to be witnesses of Christ.
✚ Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
✦ Evidence of the fruit of the Spirit.
✚ Matt 7:17-20 “Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”
✚ Gal 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
✦ Power to live holy.
✚ Eph 5:8-10 “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.”
✚ 1 Thess 4:7-8 “For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.”
✦ Holy Spirit seals us unto the Lord.
✚ Eph 4:30 “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”
✚ 2 Cor 1:21-22 “Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.”
✚ Eph 1:12-14 “That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.”
✘ Earnest = Pledge or promise (i.e. down payment) given in advance as a guarantee of the remainder to come.
This is part 3 of the Foundational Principles series.