Matthew 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
It is water baptism
Matthew 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
Mark 1:5 And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins.
John 3:23 And John also was baptizing in AEnon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized.
Acts 8:36 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.
Acts 10:47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?
Do I have to be baptized to be saved?
No external act is necessary for salvation
It is faith alone so that none of us can brag about anything Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; 26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. 27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. 28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. 29 Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: 30 Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
He counts faith as righteousness, not something that we do Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
It is nothing that you can do in your body that gets you right with God Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
It is not of you Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Not my righteousness or goodness but His applied to my life Philippians 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
When Paul explained what the gospel is he didn’t even mention baptism I Corinthians 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
Paul said he didn’t even come to baptize but to preach the gospel I Corinthians 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
One of the proof verses that you must be baptized to be saved actually teaches the opposite Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
Why the confusion and argument about what baptism means?
The word baptism is the translation of a word that means to strictly dip, immerse in water
It has always meant the same thing
Early church fathers practiced only immersion for baptism
Calvin and Luther recognized this but decided that they could substitute a symbol for the symbol since it was a symbol
Who should be baptized?
There are no infants baptized any where in the New Testament
Every baptism in the New Testament is preceded by repentance and faith Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
Acts 16:30 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? 31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. 32 And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. 33 And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.
Acts 18:8 And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized.
Baptism is reserved solely for those people who have put their faith in Christ Galatians 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
What is baptism?
It is a symbol or picture of what God has done in your heart and life Romans 6:2 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.
You are now dead to sin Romans 6:2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
You are buried with Him Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
You are raised to walk in newness of life Romans 6:4 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.
Baptism is an outward revelation of an inward reality
Baptism is another way to publicly profess your faith in Christ Jesus Matthew 10:32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. 33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.
It is a testimony of your decision to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior
It is a testimony of your turning from your sin and that you acknowledge that you have been forgiven by the grace of God
It is a way of identifying ourselves with Jesus Christ, His church, and what He did on the cross of Calvary Romans 6:4 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.
It is a picture of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ I Corinthians 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
When should I get baptized?
We call it believer’s baptism, so when you believe you should be baptized. In the New Testament they believed and were baptized immediately
You only get baptized when you are old enough to make your own decision and you do so fully realizing what you are doing and why
You only get baptized when you realize that salvation is purely by grace and you receive no merit, no points, no good works for being baptized
You realize that baptism is not essential for salvation but it is essential for obedience
You get baptized after you fully realize that you are saved
You get baptized by immersion even if you were falsely baptized some other way
You get baptized when you realize that water does not wash away sin, put you in the covenant, get you closer to God but is simply a symbol of what has already happened in your heart
You get baptized to publicly say that you love Jesus and have given your life to Him
You get baptized when you want to say that you are leaving your old life and living a new life
Being baptized as an adult is humbling yourself and saying that what Jesus wants from you is more important than your pride!