The Doctrine of Baptisms

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, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
Hebrews 6:1-2

The doctrine of baptisms has caused much confusion within the church. In this study, we will look at everywhere the word baptism is used in the New Testament, then categorize those verses into similar subtopics on baptism. We want to always make sure we never interpret the difficult verses in any way that would contradict the clear and simple verses.

The word baptism is from the Greek word "baptizo" (Strong's number 907), which means:

  1. to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
  2. to cleanse by dipping or submergin, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one's self, bathe
  3. to overwhelm
reference TDNT - 1:529,92

Although baptizo is translated as baptism 80 times in the New Testament, we will only consider those verses of where the actual baptism is performed. These verses are divided into the following categories:

Types of baptisms in New Testament

  • Water baptism - see verses below
  • Spirit baptism - see verses below
  • John's baptism - see verses below
  • Jesus' baptism - Matthew 3:13-17.
    Comment: Jesus' was baptized to fulfill all righteousness, but this is not the same reason we are baptized.
  • Moses' baptism - 1 Corinthians 10:2.
    We don't know much about the baptism of Moses.
  • the Comment: baptism of fire - Matthew 3:12
  • baptism of suffering - Matthew 20:22-23 (parallel text also at Mark 10:38), Luke 12:50
  • baptism for the dead - 1 Corinthians 15:29

We will just now look at where the verses are used most. That is: water baptism, Spirit baptism, and John's baptism.

Believer's Baptism

  • Matthew 28:19-20. Jesus' command. What did Jesus mean by "baptizing them"
  • Acts 2:41 "...they that gladly received his word were baptized..."
  • Acts 8:12 "...when they believed...they were baptized..."
  • Acts 8:36-37. Ethiopian eunuch. "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God...and he (Philip) baptized him."
  • Acts 9:18. Paul's baptism. "...and he received sight...and was baptized."
  • Acts 10:47-48. Cornelius' household. "Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized?
  • Acts 16:14-15. Lydia's baptism. "...whose heart the Lord opened...she was baptized..."
  • Acts 16:33. Philippian jailer. "...they spake unto him the word of the Lord...and...he...was baptized..."
  • Acts 18:8. Crispus and company. "And Crispus...believed...and many...were baptized."
  • Acts 19:5. Disciples at Ephesus. "...they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus..."
  • 1 Corinthians 1:13-17. Paul's exhortation. "For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel..."
  • 1 Corinthians 15:29 "...baptism for the dead..."

Holy Spirit Baptism

  • Matthew 3:11 (parallel text in John 1:33). "...he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost..."
  • Acts 1:5. "...ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost..."
  • Acts 11:16. "...ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost."
  • Romans 6:3-4. "...we are buried with him by baptism...that...we also should walk in newness of life."
  • 1 Corinthians 12:13. "...by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body...". Comment: Spirit baptism unites all believers.
  • Galatians 3:27-28. "...baptized into Christ... there is neither bond nor free...". same context as 1 Corinthians 12:13.
  • Ephesians 4:5. "One Lord, one faith, one baptism."
  • Colossians 2:12. "Buried with him in baptism...".
    This verse what many have used to justify infant baptism, because the previous verse speaks of spiritual circumcision. This is a far stretch from this one verse. There is no scriptural justification for infant baptism.
  • 1 Peter 3:21. "...baptism doth also now save us...the answer of a good conscience toward God..."

John's Baptism

  • John 1:26,28,31,33
  • John 3:23,26
  • John 3:7
  • John 21:25
  • Mark 1:4
  • Mark 11:30
  • Luke 3:8
  • Luke 7:29
  • Luke 20:4
  • Acts 1:5, 1:22
  • Acts 10:33
  • Acts 11:16
  • Acts 13:24
  • Acts 18:25
  • Acts 19:3-4
  • Matthew 3:4
  • John 4:1-2

Homework

Review all scriptures given here, and determine what you see that the Bible says about the doctrine of baptisms.


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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,
and of laying on of hands,
and of resurrection of the dead,
and of eternal judgment.
Hebrews 6:1-2

Know the Truth