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preaching article Video: The Exodus, Deliverance, and the Meaning of Baptism

Video: The Exodus, Deliverance, and the Meaning of Baptism

based on 5 ratings
Oct 8, 2011

This five-minute video from Granger Community Church unpacks the history and the meaning of baptism--connecting our new life in Christ to Israel's passing through the Red Sea.

"Baptism gives us a new identity of freedom in Christ. Your sins may seem to pursue you but they've been drowned in the blood of Christ shed at the cross."

Practical Idea: Email this video to those who are thinking about getting baptized or still have questions about what baptism is all about. You might even play this video at the beginning of your next baptism service as a practical teaching moment. 



In November, 1986 Mark Beeson and his wife, Sheila, moved, against all popular advice and counsel, to Granger, Indiana with their young children. They didn’t have extended family or friends waiting for them, just a vision to start a different kind of church that related to people on their terms. They didn’t have all the answers to the questions people were asking. Nobody had ever done church like this before. What they did know, however, was enough to keep them going and enough to sacrifice an easy road for the cause—“helping people take their next step toward Christ…together.” They started in their living room with 10 people and 25 years later, Granger Community Church has attendees in the US, India, Singapore, the Philippines, Canada and the UK.

Talk about it...

Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
the idea that i got in watching the video is that all baptisms in the bible always involve water. but according to my simple/layman's reading of the bible, there are baptisms that do not involve water. example: Mat. 3:11 - "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 1Cor. 12:13 says that the Holy Spirit baptizes us into the body of Christ. this baptism does not involve water at all and the baptizer is tha Holy Spirit and not just any man or pastor. after this baptism by the Holy Spirit we become members of the body of Christ apart from the ritual of the water baptism. please enlighten me on this.
John Gerlach avatar
John Gerlach
0 days ago
Joe - I think the point is water baptism involves water. There is tremendous symbolism in that. This does not negate baptism of the Holy Spirit. I appreciated the video. Let's find out what's good in what our brothers and sisters are sharing... Just a thought.
Keith  B avatar
Keith B
0 days ago
Why are we listening to anything Granger says? By their own standard of church growth, they are a failure.
Thomas Cash avatar
Thomas Cash
0 days ago
In 1999 I toured the Holy Land. We were shown an number of ancient mikvahs, pools used for ceremonial washing and and preparation for worship. Devout Jews were immersing themselves long before John the Baptist ever stepped foot in the Jordan River. In today's orthodox Jewish communites, mikvahs are still used. Jesus submitted Himself to baptism and commanded His followers to do the same. Mark Beeson does a good job explaining the significance of baptism.
George Lewis avatar
George Lewis
0 days ago
Though fairly well done, the video didn't work for me. The metaphor fell apart and left me thinking that the Egyptians who followed and were covered in the midst of the sea where the only ones BAPTIZED in water...not the Israelites. They remained dry! In most churches the doctrine of water baptism is horribly misunderstood.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
yes John...no doubt water baptism involves water. but i just cannot seem to reconcile the idea of symbolizing with physical water the act of the Holy Spirit who truly/really baptizes/identifies us into the body of Christ. this baptism performed by the Holy Spirit is the real, true baptism that baptizes/identifies us into Christ apart from the ritual of water baptism. why would one need any symbols when we have the real thing? just asking......For George - i truly agree with you -"In most churches the doctrine of water baptism is horribly misunderstood."
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
I appreciate these thoughts very much. Here is a short article on academia that supports the video http://collegemhc.academia.edu/DanielKeeran/Papers/1021548/The_Mystery_of_Baptism_Rediscovered
Michael  Hall avatar
Michael Hall
0 days ago
I think this video is pretty except when he says the water "symbolizes." Baptism is no symbol I don't know how so much of the church has got this idea that it doesn't do anything or that baptism can't be for a tiny child when God says so many good things come in and through baptism. In Romans 6 Paul says Baptism unites us to Christ's death and resurrection, Peter goes so far as to say it saves, and even Jesus himself says that being born again comes through water and the Spirit. I think the best part of this video is that he talks about still struggling post baptism. We all do, we all have sin as 1 John says, but the good news for us is that this God of grace has united us to Jesus in that water. When we doubt, when we sin, we look to HIS work of uniting us and even putting his name on us of Father, Son and Holy Spirit in that water.
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
I fully agree that baptism is not a symbol. It is a conscious pledge to give up sin in 1 Peter 3:21. It is a death and resurrection like that of Christ, in Rom 6. When they heard Philip, they were baptized, both men and women(Acts 8:12). If baptism is about obeying from the heart in Rom.6, how can infants receive it?
Thomas Cash avatar
Thomas Cash
0 days ago
Michael, I believe Mark Beeson's reference to how the "water symbolizes" baptism comes directly from the passage you referred to in 1 Peter 3:21: "and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you." Tying that to Annaias' command to Saul, "And now what are your waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name" (Acts 22:16) affirm the importance of baptism to the first century church.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Romans 6:3 Or do you not know that as many of us as WERE BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST JESUS WERE BAPTIZED INTO HIS DEATH? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through BAPTISM INTO DEATH, that just as Christ was raised 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 united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, The phrase "BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST JESUS" in Rom. 6:3 coincides perfectly with 1Cor. 12:13 -For by one Spirit we were all "BAPTIZED INTO ONE BODY......." That is the body of Christ and therefore "INTO CHRIST JESUS". This baptism can be performed/done only by the Holy Spirit baptizing/identifying/uniting us into "one body" - the body of Christ. There is no water involved in this baptism. And this baptism is impossible for any minister to perform because this is only in the domain of God the Holy Spirit. Just a thought---Although the word baptism is found in Rom. 6:3 but the baptism here does not refer to water. it refers to the baptizing/identifying/uniting act of the Holy Spirit uniting/identifying us into Christ in His death and resurrection. I agree with what you said that "In Romans 6 Paul says Baptism unites us to Christ's death and resurrection..." but no water is involved in this baptism. It is all the work of the Holy Spirit. Again, why go to water when the real thing is already done by God uniting us to Christ through "the baptism by the Holy Spirit (1Cor. 12:13)?
Jeff Strite avatar
Jeff Strite
0 days ago
Very interesting take. But there are many different images presented in Jesus' baptism. Perhaps one of the most intriguing for me is that Jesus' ministry began immediately after his baptism (Luke 3:23 NIV). In the Old Testament, one of the first things a High Priest did before being installed in his post was to be washed with water (Leviticus 8:6)
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
All Israel was to be baptized but some rejected Gods instructions. This handout may be helpful for further study....use freely http://www.counsellorpublishing.com/images/Baptism.pdf
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brother Joseph: as the Church continues to wrestle with the issues surrounding immersion, the ONE overarching reason, the One reason that outweighs all our attempts to reason and rationalize and understand is that Jesus commanded it. He "suffered it to be so" for Himself and He commanded His Apostles to do it for the disciples they would make. Does it impart something, does it testify to something, does it initiate something? Some find clear answers in Scripture and others don't. Since Jesus said that disciples were to be immersed and taught to observe/keep/obey all He commanded, immersion should be a given. One might ask, as you have, about water immersion and immersion in the Holy Spirit, but it is clear that even after the Spirit was poured out at Pentecost and believers continued to be filled with/receive the Spirit, the earliest believers continued to immerse new believers in water as Jesus commanded.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Brother Prescott, surely Jesus said that disciples were to be "immersed" and taught to observe/keep/obey all He commanded. Please allow me to throw some comments and questions. You seem to zero in right away on the procedure of immersion. Why not establish first the purpose of water baptism? the bible says the purposes are: 1. for salvation (Mark 16:16) 2. for forgiveness of sins (Mark 1:4, Luke 3:3, Acts 2:38) 3. to wash away sins (Acts 22:16). if you happened to teach and observe these as the purposes of water baptism how would you reconcile these purposes with the blood of Christ which does the following purposes also. 1. Propitiation through His blood (Rom. 3:25) 2 Redemption/forgiveness through His blood (Eph. 1:7, Col. 1:14) 3. Without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness (Heb. 9:22) 4. Blood cleanses (1John 1:7). if our salvation and forgiveness of sins simply rest on the blood of Christ, what is water baptism immersion for? these are only my wild thoughts....I would like your brotherly reaction on these wild thoughts.
Derrick Tuper avatar
Derrick Tuper
0 days ago
Regarding Matt. 3:11: John's baptism was in recognition for one's need to repent. But When Jesus ascended and sent the Holy Spirit at Pentacost, now there could be a "full" baptism, as Peter stated in Acts 2:38, "Repent and be baptized...for the forgiveness of sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Eph. 4:5 says there is ONE baptism (not two-water and Spirit). To be clear this baptism is a water baptism we recall Philip and the Ethiopian where in Acts 8:36 the Ethiopian said to Philip, "Look, here is water. Why shouldn't I be baptized?" When Jesus was baptized what happened? The Holy Spirit descended upon him. This was to symbolize what would take place at the believer's baptism in the name of Christ (Acts 2:38). However, this baptism isn't salvation in and of itself. I can't just simply be baptized and be saved. There needs to be faith and repentance. Or, as Peter refers to it in 1st Peter 3:21 the "pledge of a good conscience toward God". Hope this helps.
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
Joseph Please tell me you do not really believe the stuff you are typing and you are turning the coversation around to make your point here. Paul claims that the crossing of the Red Sea is a Baptism of Moses. This act was a Hebrew Old Testament Type or Shadow of things to come. John the Baptist Baptized for forgiveness and Jesus never sinned why then did he need forgiveness? There are 5 new testament Baptisms, 1. Baptism of the Holy Spirit that only happened 2 times, Pentecost and teh house of Cornelious, 2. John's Baptism no Holy Spirit until Jesus' Baptism, 3. Baptism of Fire, this is judgment, 4. Baptism of Suffering, Jesus lived this one along with several who suffered and dies for the Lord's Gospel, Finally there is the Christian Baptism, element was alway water by immersion and can not be disputed by any historian, this was for the forgiveness of sin and the gift of the Holy Spirit,
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
Joseph Please tell me you do not really believe the stuff you are typing and you are turning the coversation around to make your point here. Paul claims that the crossing of the Red Sea is a Baptism of Moses. This act was a Hebrew Old Testament Type or Shadow of things to come. John the Baptist Baptized for forgiveness and Jesus never sinned why then did he need forgiveness? There are 5 new testament Baptisms, 1. Baptism of the Holy Spirit that only happened 2 times, Pentecost and teh house of Cornelious, 2. John's Baptism no Holy Spirit until Jesus' Baptism, 3. Baptism of Fire, this is judgment, 4. Baptism of Suffering, Jesus lived this one along with several who suffered and dies for the Lord's Gospel, Finally there is the Christian Baptism, element was alway water by immersion and can not be disputed by any historian, this was for the forgiveness of sin and the gift of the Holy Spirit,
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
Joseph Please tell me you do not really believe the stuff you are typing and you are turning the coversation around to make your point here. Paul claims that the crossing of the Red Sea is a Baptism of Moses. This act was a Hebrew Old Testament Type or Shadow of things to come. John the Baptist Baptized for forgiveness and Jesus never sinned why then did he need forgiveness? There are 5 new testament Baptisms, 1. Baptism of the Holy Spirit that only happened 2 times, Pentecost and teh house of Cornelious, 2. John's Baptism no Holy Spirit until Jesus' Baptism, 3. Baptism of Fire, this is judgment, 4. Baptism of Suffering, Jesus lived this one along with several who suffered and dies for the Lord's Gospel, Finally there is the Christian Baptism, element was alway water by immersion and can not be disputed by any historian, this was for the forgiveness of sin and the gift of the Holy Spirit,
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
sorry got locked up for a moment, as for the Gift of the Holy Spirit this is when you take on the Blood of Christ as your Circumsision that establishes you as an Heir to the Promise of Abraham, (Collosians) Jesus said you must be Baptized in water and the Spirit this is the Gift of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:38, 1 Peter states that Noah's flood was a type of Baptism in which 8 passed thru the water therefore Baptism "NOW SAVES YOU" Paul never wrote that Baptism any other way than the word reveals as to dip, to dunk or to immerse Baptizo in Greek. Do not place your personal BIAS into the conversation. Confess Jesus as Lord and you will be saved, Repent, be baptized and be saved, John 3:16 is even a Baptism scripture, eternal life is the Gift of the Holy Spirit, Believe is the full act of Faith including Baptism by water Acts 2:38. Rev 2:10 Live the life to the end get a crown of life it is all there Brother
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
John the Baptist did not wish to Baptize Jesus, and jesus stated that This is how we fulfill all righteousness, This was how God chose to mark His chosen people for the end times that began on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus didn't need forgiveness but He was our example and He was given over to the Father that Glorious day at the shore of a dirty river.
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
As to Rom 6, the death burial and resurrection is the type of Baptism, as you come to the water you are in sin, you go down into the water as the Isrealites did and rise from the water clean of sin to rise and walk in newness of life as a new creature or creation in Christ. The Tabernacle is called a type by the author of Hebrews, Jesus is the BETTER TABERNACLE, the sacrifice brought to the altar was bled out and the blood taken to the laver and the priest would wash and could not enter the Holy Place until he was clean. then he could enter and participate in the table of Shew Bread, Altar of incense and the Oil in the lamp is the light of the world that is the Holy Spirit, you could not go here unless you are a priest. Peter tells us in his epistle that we are a royal and Holy Priesthood who have been in Christ ie Baptised. we can now take communion, ShewBread, Have our prayer heard and be partakers of the Light of the Holy Spirit ie the Gift of the Holy Spirit. hope it helps
Donald Butters avatar
Donald Butters
0 days ago
George, Paul states that the walls of water on the sides and the cloud covered them above represented the water covering, the army of egypt represented the sin that held the people in bondage as sin holds us in bondage before our forgiveness at out WATER CHRISTIAN BAPTISM. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not applicable to any other than the people at Pentecost and the home of Cornelious. Nowhere else do we have this outpouring this was the begining of the covenant and the reading of the will of Christ as given in Exodus by Moses when 3000 died, our Better Covenant saved 3000 that day and the Gentile church established the second time. Bible Bible Bible don't add or take away from the Words of truth folks.
Don Partain avatar
Don Partain
0 days ago
As Joseph pointed out, we should first recognize the purpose Scripture gives for baptism in the name of Jesus Christ: forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38), to be saved (Mark 16:16), to have our sins washed away (Acts 22:16), to be in Christ (Rom.6:3), to be united with His death, burial, and resurrection (Rom.6:4), to be saved ( I Pet.3:21). Which baptism--Holy Spirit or water? Actual examples say, it's water (Acts 8). The Holy Spirit baptizes us into Christ's body (I Cor.12:13) as He instructs us to be baptized; He then begins to live within us (Acts 2:38). I Pet.3:21's NIV rendering, "pledge" is a poor translation; the literal Greek rendering is "intense asking" of God for a good conscience--i.e., for forgiveness of sins. In other words, baptism is the true "sinner's prayer." But this doesn't pit water baptism against the blood of Christ; to the contrary, baptism is an expression of our faith--just as repentance and confession are. Baptism is not in addition to our faith--it's an integral part of saving faith.
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
Water baptism is our pledge to keep a good conscience toward God, our promise to give up sin as God forgives our sins through baptism into the death of Christ as we are crucified with Him.
Don Partain avatar
Don Partain
0 days ago
Daniel, in I Pet.3:21, "pledge" is a mistranslation of eperotema, formed by erotao (ask) plus the intensifier "epi." The same word is used in Matt.16:1 where the Pharisees "asked" for (or demanded) a sign from Jesus. This is why Kittel renders I Pet.3:21 as "not the putting away of outward filth, but prayer to God for a good conscience." They continue, "Thus the request for a good conscience is to be construed as a prayer for the remission of sins."
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
So baptism is a prayer to God for forgiveness? Baptism as a prayer may be in Acts 22:16. In Romans 6, baptism is about giving up sin (keeping a clear conscience?) "11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires." In 1 Peter 3:21 eperotema is "answer to the question." What is the question? Do you promise to give up sin and cling only to God. Baptism is this conscious pledge in which one says, "I do."
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brother Joseph: My answer was in response to your question, "after this baptism by the Holy Spirit we become members of the body of Christ apart from the ritual of the water baptism... why go to water...?" The answer is clear, "Because Jesus commanded it." The Bible does not make clear why Jesus submitted to water baptism, but He did, and He commanded it for disciples. It seems you are resistant to observe/keep/obey Jesus' simple command. In light of all your reasoning and rationalizing against it, it seems appropriate to ask of you a question similar to what Jesus asked Saul of Tarsus: "ti soi pros kentra lakizein" ("Why do you kick against the goads?" para. "Why do you fight against My will?"). Why are you so resistant to submitting to the Lord through water baptism?
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Whatever else one may say about what water baptism is or is not, it is clear that submitting to water baptism is an act of obedience to our Lord, as well as an act of faith.
Don Partain avatar
Don Partain
0 days ago
I think we'd agree that Jesus' baptism by John was for a fundamentally different reason from our baptism. We know this because we are baptized in order to be forgiven of our sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16), while Jesus had no sins to be forgiven. Jesus Himself said He was baptized "to fulfill all righteousness"--i.e., to carry out the Father's will for Him (Matt.3:15). John 1:32,33 explains that John came baptizing Jesus in order to "manifest" Jesus to Israel--which occurred as the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus in the form of a dove, which was divine testimony to John that Jesus was and is the Son of God--testimony, of course, that occurred the moment John baptized Jesus.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Sorry Bros., I have been away for a while. May I first comment on the comment and question of Bro. Prescott in reaction also to my previous comment and question to him. "after this baptism by the Holy Spirit we become members of the body of Christ apart from the ritual of the water baptism... why go to water...?" The answer is clear, "Because Jesus commanded it.? I fully agree with you that water baptism was commanded by Jesus in Mat. 28: 19 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them ?? 20 "teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you??? Verse 19 does not tell us clearly the purpose/reason. You have to go somewhere and the nearest and clearest purpose is Mark 16:16 "He who believes and is baptized will be saved;?.? Also verse 20 demands full teaching and observance of all that Jesus commanded. Do we teach and observe today that water baptism is for salvation? If we do, then what happens to the blood of Christ? Eph. 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins,?.. Does it mean that water and the blood of Christ are for our salvation altogether? Would it not appear that the blood of Christ is not enough, we have to seek help from water baptism?
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Going back to verse 20, may I ask, do we truly teach and observe all that Jesus ever commanded? Do we teach and observe today that we have power to forgive or retain sins? Surely this was commanded y Jesus in John 20: 21 So Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you." 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 "If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." John 20:21-23 was used by Peter in Acts 5: 1-11 with authority. There are so many commands of Jesus in the bible that we just choose to ignore completely. John 20:21-23 is only one example. How about this command of Jesus? Mat 23: 1 Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, 2 saying: "The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. 3 "Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.? Jesus commanded here to obey the scribes and the Pharisees because they have the authority of Moses. Do we teach and observe this command of Jesus today? So is it safe to say that Jesus commanded it and we have to obey it? May I suggest that the commandments of God must be ascertained first if they have not been changed? Example: the commands on food; 1. Adam?s time ? pure vegetarian (Gen. 2:16-17); 2. Noah?s time ? vegetable all meat (Gen 9:3); 3. Moses? time ? vegetable meat but some meat are forbidden (Lev. 11). Therefore , to safely obey the commands of God, ascertain whether that command still stands or it may have been revised somewhere in the bible.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Bro. Derrick, I fully agree when you say that ?Eph. 4:5 says there is ONE baptism (not two-water and Spirit). To be clear this baptism is a water baptism?.? May I ask how certain are you that this refers to water baptism? Why not the ?baptized by the Holy Spirit? of 1Cor. 12:13? May I suggest that we refer again to Eph. 4:3-6 where there are seven ?ones? listed? Verse 3 says ?endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.? Perhaps this is our hint that all the seven ?ones? should have ?unity of the Spirit?. If all the seven ?ones? are spiritual, then the ?one baptism? here should be spiritual to keep the unity of the Spirit. But since you say that ?To be clear this baptism is a water baptism?? then among the seven ?ones? this is the only one that is physical. May I request that you try to re-analyze Eph. 4:3-6.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brothers, you?re making this WAY too complex. There?s no Bible code to crack, no secret revelation to be received, no mysterious knowledge to be acquired; God has made it clear. This reminds me a bit of Romans 1. A natural, plain, straightforward reading of Scripture shows the Apostles' understanding and practice RE: baptism, as does an elementary knowledge of the earliest church practices (see the Didache, etc.). In order to support an aberrant understanding, the plain truth must be suppressed. In your futile speculations and attempts to be wise, there is the danger of your heart being darkened becoming foolish. Following the author of Hebrews, one might say that concerning baptism, there is much to say, but it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles/utterances/words of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil. Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. We SHOULD seek to understand more fully the depth and meaning of baptism, BUT let us press on from futile speculation about whether water baptism may be, at best, useless or, at worst, unbiblical. These matters may have the appearance of wisdom, but they are of little value. Instead, we need to keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God and set our minds on the things above, not on the things that are on earth, for we have died and our life is hidden with Christ in God.
Reverend Kara Louise Smith avatar
Reverend Kara Louise Smith
0 days ago
I enjoyed this video VER much! I am a new minister in training and I am having so much fun finding out that I have ALWAYS been saved regardless of my short commings and down falls... THANK YOU so much for this BEAUTIFUL video, my Baptism was and is still today very REAL!!! It is commanded that we be BAPTISED... WHY QUESTION IT?
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
Where were the 3,000 people baptized on the day of Pentecost when the church first began? Where is the oldest known baptistery dating from the first century AD? What is that large oval hole in the floor of St. Peters basilica beneath the baptismal font? Why are the early baptismal basins so large? The biblical teaching is followed by the physical evidence of the places of baptism in the ancient and medieval world. http://www.amazon.com/Lost-Mystery-Baptism-Daniel-Keeran/dp/1442124660
John E Miller avatar
John E Miller
0 days ago
The video was clever, dramatic and emotionally charged. It was not faithful to the scriptural teaching of Christian baptism. The exodous of the children of Israel from the bondage of Egypt is based on two great events. Firstly, the sacrifice of the Passover which symbolises redemption by blood. Secondly, the crossing of the Red Sea which symbolises redemption by power. In that sense both speak of Christ's death for us. When we come to the crossing of the Jordan we find there a different picture entirely. There is no pressure from behind, no angry enemy attacking. The great incentive was the land of God's promise ahead. The people of God were lead through the Jordan by the Ark of God. The distance between the Ark and the Israelites was carefully stipulated. The teaching here is completely different. Christ has gone into death. His death was unique and stands supremely alone. He came out of death alone. In the type, we follow and the Jordan therefore typifies the acceptance in baptism of our death with Him in a world which refuses His authority. This is in clear contrast to the Red Sea aspect of the death of Christ which was His death for us.
Fernando Villegas avatar
Fernando Villegas
0 days ago
John E Miller, you bring up some interesting points. I've been thinking it over, but I want to make sure that I understand what you're trying to say, so please correct me if I'm wrong. You're saying that the crossing of the Red Sea by the Israelites was a type of Christ's death for us, while the crossing of the Jordan River by the next generation of Israelites was a type of our own death to the world as we follow Christ; so that the crossing of the Jordan, rather than of the Red Sea, is the more appropriate scriptural foundation for Christian baptism. Am I reading you correctly? If so, you make a very interesting argument. I don't think the differences between the two crossings are quite as great as you express them to be; and yet those differences ARE there, and I think it is well worth the effort to explore the implications of those differences. It's certainly something to chew on!
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
But, Brother John, a Jordan River analogy falls as short as does a Red Sea analogy. At least the Red Sea analogy to baptism -- albeit a baptism "unto Moses" -- is made in the Bible. There was water above the Israelites with the cloud and around them in the walls of water, but there?s no such description at the Jordan crossing. I'm not saying that there's NO validity to a Jordan River analogy, but there's not necessarily MORE validity in it. ALL analogies fall short, NO typology is perfect, NO parable holds up to this kind of hermeneutic. There's NO exact one-to-one correspondence. Paul says that by baptism we have been "clothed in Christ." How far should we take that? Elsewhere, he says that in baptism we've been buried with Christ in baptism and resurrected with Him (Peter makes that connection of baptism and resurrection). In Paul's same passage, he says that in baptism we've been crucified with Christ. How far should we take that? In the next chapter, Paul doesn't use the word for baptism, but uses the same words of comparison as the previous chapter, saying that in baptism believers are joined to Christ like a widow being married to a new husband. In another place, he connects it with circumcision. How do we deal with that? Should we combine these or were they meant to speak to different aspects or ways of understanding baptism? All through the NT, forms of baptw, baptizw, baptistes, baptisma, etc. are translated as washing or cleansing. And it's commonly held that in John's gospel Jesus made the analogy of baptism and new birth. It's not a matter of "either-or," but "both-and."
John E Miller avatar
John E Miller
0 days ago
I would not use the word "analogy" myself, although I do not find fault with its use. Scripture speaks of Old Testament events being "a shadow of thing to come" .(Col.2:17) This fits in with the Lord's reference to "the mysteries of the kingdom of God" which suggests that there are things hidden from those who do not believe. The Lord in Mat.13:35 speaks of "things hidden from the foundation of the world" and Peter says of Jesus that "He was foreknown before the foundation of the world". If the Old Testament means anything it must have Christ as its greatest and most wonderful subject from start to finish. We must, with the instruction and help of the Holy Spirit of God seek to find out what He was telling us about this greatest of all subjects, which at the time they were written were even concealed from the vessels used to pen the words (Mat.13:17). Peter tells us that they are "thing into which angels desire to look". In Joshua ch.3:11 we read of the "Ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth" crossing over ahead of you into the Jordan". This surely refers to the glorious work of Christ in His atoning death at the cross. At this point there were no enemies pursuing the people and no danger threatening them. The enemies that remained lay ahead and Joshua reminded them of God's salvation that they had experienced at the Red Sea when He had removed the fear and power of death before their eyes. Now the test was, were they prepared to follow the Ark into the Jordan and as they passed through acknowledge and identify with it as it stood there in the in the middle of the Jordan on dry ground. Surely this is a clear shadow or type of our identification with Christ, in His death, now expressed in the sacrament of baptism. That is my understanding of the teaching of this wonderful passage of scripture. I believe that Romans 6:3-4, 6-11, Eph.2:5-6 and Col.3:1-3 are New Testament passages which help us in our understanding of this subject. I cannot add more.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Not everything or every event in the OT was a shadow of that which is to come: "...whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope" (Rom 15:4); "...these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come" (1Co 10:11). The passages in Romans, Ephesians, and Colossians appear to have NO connection and make no reference to crossing the Jordan with the Ark of the Covenant. When you say, "surely" this or "clearly" that or "certainly" the other, it isn't so sure, clear, or certain. It may possibly be, but it is a stretch. First, the Israelites were to consecrate themselves BEFORE crossing over. Second, they had to stay FAR AWAY from the Ark (2000 cubits distance is quite far). Third, "the waters which were flowing down from above stood and rose up in one heap, a great distance away... and those which were flowing down toward the sea... were completely cut off," unlike the waters at the Red Sea which stood in two walls on either side, while the cloud was overhead, so there's NO sense of immersion. There's really nothing in the Jordan crossing event that points toward baptism. At least at the Egypt/Red Sea event there's the blood of the lamb typifying Jesus blood, freedom from slavery typifying being freed from slavery to sin, and by the Bible's explicit testimony the crossing typifying a baptism -- theirs into Moses typifying ours into Christ Jesus. None of these elements are present at the Jordan. I realize this was Origen's position, but we know many of the early church fathers went way too far in spiritualizing and analogizing and typifying.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
I am now really intoxicated with the so many explanations/comments about this subject of ?water baptism? without any definite conclusion at all. As a layman let me just simply put these questions; why Paul, in all his letters, never requested/admonished/advised/charged/commanded/instructed/directed any of his audiences/co-workers to submit/do water baptism? Why would Paul confidently say in 1Cor. 1:17 that ?Christ did not send me to baptize?? From this simple statement, was he not deliberately disobeying Mat. 28:19 ?go??make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit?? Or was he only bluffing that ?Christ did not send me to baptize?? If he was not really sent to baptize but to preach the gospel only, then was he free to disobey Mat. 28:19? Moreover, of all the ministers of God, Paul is the only one who would daringly disobey Mat. 28:19 and would boldly say that ?Christ did not send me to baptize?. Would there be any minister of God today who can say fearlessly what Paul is saying here? Admittedly, Paul never also specifically requested/admonished/advised/charged/commanded/instructed/directed his audiences/co-workers not to submit/do water baptism. But, how come that Paul says in Eph. 4:5 that there is ?one baptism?. If this ?one baptism? is water baptism, how sure are we? Then what would happen to the ?baptism by the Holy Spirit? of 1Cor. 12:13? If water baptism and the ?baptism by the Holy Spirit? are all present together today, then the ?one baptism? mentioned by Paul in Eph. 4:5 is two not one? I think the Christian community should decide definitely once and for all what is this "one baptism". Is it water or Holy Spirit?I think these questions deserve a scriptural explanation.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Just some questions regarding the comment of Bro. Prescott on October 12/11. Bro., you quoted Heb. 5:11-14 to drive your point. And then you quoted Heb. 6:1-2 Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment.(NASB). The phrase "instruction about washings" in NASB is rendered "doctrine of BAPTISMS" in NKJV version. And Heb. 6:1 gives us the instruction that we should leave the elementary teaching of Christ and move on to maturity. Just asking Bro. Prescott, is not one of those elementary teachings listed in Heb. 6:1-2 to be left and move on to maturity "doctrine of BAPTISMS" (instruction about washings)? Then you quoted also Col, 3:2. May I ask again, is not water a thing of the earth? Should we seek it according to Col, 3:2? Are these right questions to ask, Bro? I am sorry, but I do need clear scriptural explanations.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brother Joseph: Allow me to answer your first question regarding why Paul didn't write much about water baptism. Of course, you're engaged in what's called a "logical fallacy," making an argument based on silence. The truth is: he didn't HAVE to write much about it. If there were to be an argument made on silence, it actually displays that water baptism wasn't an issue. There were, in fact, people who went overboard, believing that one could be baptized even for the dead. In your quotation of Paul in 1 Corinthians 1, you leave out some important information, that he DID baptize Crispus and Gaius and also the household of Stephanas, and that he was glad that he hadn?t baptized more of them because of their factionalism (boasting to be "of Paul," or "of Apollos," or "of Cephas," or "of Christ"), so they couldn't say they were baptized in Paul's name. As for Paul himself, when the scales fell from his own eyes he immediately got up and was baptized. When Paul was at Philippi, Lydia responded to what he was saying and she and her household were baptized, then they he stayed at her house. After they were jailed in that same town, Paul and Silas spoke the Word of the Lord to the jailer and immediately he was baptized. When Paul first preached at Corinth, people were believing and being baptized. When Paul went to Ephesus and found the disciples of John the Baptist, he enquired about whether or not they had received the Holy Spirit. Since they knew nothing of receiving the Spirit, Paul instructed them, they were baptized, and then he laid hands on them for them to receive the Spirit. So, why did Paul say that Christ hadn't sent him to baptize? We have several clues. The first comes in Acts 18 when Paul, in Corinth, made a conscious decision about his own ministry: "when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul began devoting himself completely to the word." Also, Paul was not alone as he journeyed, so he had plenty help for baptizing. And 1 Corinthians 1 in context along with the discussion that carries over to chapter 3, we see that Paul understood his calling very well: he was to plant the seed through the Gospel and to lay the foundation of Christ, while others were to come after as co-laborers to do their part. If you've ever worked in agriculture, you know that when groups go out into the fields, they don't all do the same jobs even at harvest time. The first person does his or her part of the work, the next comes behind and takes it to the next step, and so on until completion. Or on an assembly line at a factory: no one person builds the entire thing (car, appliance, computer, etc.), but each station has its own part in it. Each understands what he or she is to do and what belongs to someone else and everyone is okay with it.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
As to your question RE the "one baptism" of Ephesians 4, really your whole discussion, yes, you are asking the wrong questions. The very one who wrote "one baptism" is the very one who -- at Ephesus -- preached the gospel of Jesus to John the Baptist's disciples and immediately they were baptized (water baptism) then Paul laid hands on them to receive the Holy Spirit (Spirit baptism). There's no contradiction; it's not an either-or proposition. Spirit baptism is something the Lord does for us; water baptism is something we do for the Lord. Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestants HAVE been broadly unified on this issue for a long time. Do we practice it differently? Yes. Do we have different ideas about what it means and what it does? Yes. But do we all use water? Yes. Do we all believe in the baptism of the Holy Spirit? Yes. From time-to-time, people try to introduce aberrant readings of Scripture and to make finer points of doctrine than need to be made, much as you're wrestling with here. Ephesians 4 passage in context we see that Paul was talking about preserving the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace and attaining to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God until we all reach maturity. Nearly 2,000 years later, believers should be mature enough not to have to be going over the elementary teachings about Christ like the doctrine of baptism. What's more elementary than the use of water? We should be able to leave behind the task of re-teaching and re-learning about such elementary things, but we can't because the past couple of generations haven't taught novice believers very well. In Paul's day, they all practiced the same baptism and they all received one Spirit and Paul urged them to be unified. In Ephesians 1-3, Paul wrote about all the heavenly blessing with which believers have been blessed in Christ, and in 4-6, he wrote about how believers should live because of the blessings. Regarding Colossians 3, of course water itself is a thing of the earth, but so is food. Do you think we're also supposed to stop eating food? That's not at all what Paul was referring to here. Baptism -- even in water -- is not a thing of the earth. The earthly find it foolish and can't understand it.
Daniel Keeran avatar
Daniel Keeran
0 days ago
I asked a friend who vehemently denied that baptism into Christ is for the forgiveness of sins. I said, "So if someone came to and said why don't you get baptized and wash away your sins, would you do it?" He said "absolutely not!" So I then said "turn to Acts 22:16 and read it." His mouth fell open. The next time I saw him, he told me he decided to be baptized for the forgiveness of his sins. He is now a gospel preacher.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
it seems to me that i am blocked from posting my questions and comments. is it because i ask the wrong questions, according to your own biased consideration, which you find annoying? where else would a seeker find answers to his questions about the things he finds puzzling in the bible? do i have to ask only the questions that you like? i thought i am with mature Christians who can provide answers from the bible. by blocking me, you are showing what truly Christianity is. i hope i am wrong. this is Christianity in action. this is the only post that you allow me right now. thank you brothers.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brother Joseph: I don't know that ANY of us posting on this discussion have the ability to block ANYONE else from posting. You might check with the moderators of churchleaders.com. I'm trying to provide biblical responses to your questions, but I believe when we ask the wrong questions we're bound to get the wrong answers. RE: the elementary things of Christ, the writer isn't saying that we're to leave them behind or to disregard them, but that we should know them so well that we don't have to keep going over them time-and-again. My son is taking calculus, trigonometry, and physics this year. How far would he progress, how well could he understand and use advanced mathematical principles and scientific processes if he found it necessary to constantly ask his teacher whether or not the "order of operations" in mathematics is still relevant? I suppose the real question for you is, "Are you really a seeker or an entrenched believer? Is your method of 'questioning' an effort to be instructed or a means to sway others to your position?" Are you teachable?
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Ok Bro. Prescott, thank you for sparing me your precious time giving me your best biblical explanations. The very reason that I posted those questions because there are verses that bother me and no one could explain to me. I was just quoting what the verse is saying to me. I did not mean that we will not study the subject matter, water baptism, anymore. What I thought was the idea that the verse is telling me to leave the practice of it because its purpose is now done or accomplished by the blood of Christ. That is why I asked the question because I thought the bible really says what it says and mean what it means; to leave the elementary teachings of Christ. How could the uninitiated know how to ask the right questions to get the right answers? I think it is for people like you to give the right answers even to wild questions so that the questioner will be guided accordingly. If those are the wrong questions how would I know? I hope I could still join the discussion in the future. God bless you.....
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
Brother Joseph: Asking questions is good. It's part of the Judeo-Christian heritage to learn by asking questions. But it's just as important to learn to ask the right questions, which requires more of the asker, because not every question is pertinent or relevant. For instance, in Mark 6, Jesus fed 5,000 people from a few loaves and fish. What one could ask about that event might include questions regarding the kind of bread or the kind of fish that was used and its significance, or any myriad of such things, none of which is really pertinent. The relevant questions have to do with Jesus' power and authority and person: "Who is this that has the power to transform so little food to feed so many?" But in Mark 7, the only question the Pharisees and Scribes were interested in was why Jesus' disciples didn?t wash their hands before they ate -- irrelevant. Regarding the Scriptures you've referred to, you wrote that you were just "quoting what the verse is saying to me." The right question is not "what is the verse saying to me," but simply "what does it mean;" we need to leave out the "to me" until we know what it meant to the original writer and recipients. Regarding that, you wrote, "I thought the Bible says what it says and means what it means." Yes, you're right, of course, it DOES mean what it means, but remember this: "the Bible can never mean what it never meant," (much to the chagrin of the reader-response folks). In other words, if it didn?t mean it then, it can?t mean it now. And also remember that what we're reading in English is translated from ancient Mediterranean and Middle Eastern languages and life situations, so what it appears to say may not be the fullness of what it really says. Our English wording doesn?t always capture the full meaning. Verses of Scripture need to be considered in the social and linguistic context as well as the context of what surrounds them in their paragraphs, their passages, their books, and the whole Bible. Your overall question here has been, "Why should we bother with water baptism at all? Hasn't it been superseded or replaced? Isn't it now irrelevant?" And you cite verses that lead you to believe so. As it turns out, that's not what those verses mean and you can see that by looking carefully at the concentric circles of context. Water baptism is one of the most basic, elementary teachings. We need to leave 2 2 and press on to our calculus. Not that 2 2 isn't true or relevant or doesn't need to be taught to novices, but mature mathematicians shouldn't be stuck on such elementary issues. It's milk not meat and just confuses the less mature. As mature Christians, we need to continue to teach novice believers about water baptism, but press on, ourselves, to meatier issues. "Leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ" means "not laying again a foundation" of several things, because the foundation has already been laid. Part of that foundation includes, among other things, "instruction about baptismwn" (washings). It's still foundational, but not what we need to be focused on or being confused about.
Prescott Jay Erwin avatar
Prescott Jay Erwin
0 days ago
That's part of what Hebrews 6 is about. The writer(s) was (were) convinced of better things for the Hebrews to whom the letter is written, but the evidence didn't seem to support their conviction. They were warned that "ground that drinks the rain which often falls on it and brings forth vegetation useful to those for whose sake it is also tilled, receives a blessing from God; but if it yields thorns and thistles, it is worthless and close to being cursed, and it ends up being burned." Convinced that such isn't true of these Hebrews, the writer's encouragement for them is that God remembers their continuing ministry to the saints and their love, and his exhortation to them is to be diligent to realize the fullness of their hope (which is an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast) and to be imitators of the faithful who went before them. Questions about disregarding and discarding water baptism are thorns and thistles. As mature believers, we need to press on to the fullness of our hope, not being fixated on or redefining foundational truths.
Joseph Adonis G. Portado avatar
Joseph Adonis G. Portado
0 days ago
Bro. Prescott, thank you for allocating me your time in explaining patiently what the bible really says and means. I may agree that there are things in the bible that need to be interpreted in the background of culture, language and life situation of bible times. But perhaps there are also statements in the bible that are so plain enough that there would be no other meaning but just what they simply say and mean in any language, time and culture. Going back to my basic search for conclusive explanation about water baptism, I am serious in this search because as I observe from the Christian community there is not one explanation that would go unchallenged by some other explanations. This is not like the well established principle that 1 1 = 2 which need not be discussed anymore. Sorry Bro. Prescott, that much as I would like to go on discussing with you bible truths but there seems to be a censor or a gag here on the kind of comments I make that the operator do not like. So may I suggest that we continue this discussion in my e-mail ad (jagportado@gmail.com) if you like. But if not, thank you so much anyway for the time you spent for me.

So, what did you think?


Thank you.