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Basic Bible Doctrine (Part 13) - Baptism (Part 2)

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vi. What about "household baptisms" in the Bible?
a. Let's examine each of the five "household baptisms" in the Bible.
b. Cornelius' house (Act 10:47-48).
1) It is true that more than Cornelius was baptized by Peter.
2) Cornelius had invited his kinsmen and near friends to hear Peter (Act 10:24).
3) The members of Cornelius' house were all old enough to fear God, since he feared God with ALL his house, which could not include infants as they are too young to fear God (Act 10:2).
4) The same people that Peter baptized were the same people who the Holy Ghost fell on and spoke with tongues (Act 10:44-48).
5) There were obviously no infants there since they all heard the word and spoke with tongues (Act 10:44-46).
c. Lydia's house (Act 16:14-15).
1) Lydia was baptized after she attended to the things spoken by Paul (Act 16:14-15).
2) Lydia's household was also baptized (Act 16:15).
A. The text says nothing about there being infants in her household, let alone that any were baptized.
B. It is pure speculation to surmise that there were infants in her household.
C. There is no basis in scripture for the conclusion that there were infants in Lydia's house who were baptized since there is not one explicit example of such a thing in scripture.
D. Furthermore, such a speculation is contrary to other scripture that requires belief and repentance to be baptized (Act 8:37; Act 2:38).
d. The Philippian jailor's house (Act 16:33).
1) The Philippian jailor and all his house were baptized (Act 16:32-33).
2) All his house believed with him too (Act 16:34).
3) Infants can't believe, and since all his house believed, therefore there were no infants in his house, and therefore no infants were baptized.
e. Crispus' house (Act 18:8).
1) It is not specifically stated that Crispus' house were all baptized in Act 18:8, but at least Crispus was baptized (1Co 1:14).
2) If Crispus' house was baptized as the verse seems to imply, the entire house were believers with Crispus (Act 18:8).
3) Once again, there are no infants mentioned; and since infants can't believe, and "all his house" believed, there were no infants baptized in Crispus' house.
f. Stephanas' house (1Co 1:16).
1) Paul baptized the household of Stephanas (1Co 1:16).
2) These would have been some of the Corinthians of whom it was said "many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized" (Act 18:8).
3) Once again, no infants.
g. So out of five (5) household baptisms, four (4) were clearly households of believers, and the remaining one says nothing about infants.
D. A proper mode.
i. The proper mode of baptism is immersion in water.
ii. The word "baptize" is a transliteration (the English word was created from the Greek word) of the Greek word "baptizo".
a. Baptizo (G907) - From a derivative of G911; to make whelmed (that is, fully wet); used only (in the New Testament) of ceremonial ablution, especially (technically) of the ordinance of Christian baptism: - baptist, baptize, wash.
b. Bapto (G911) - A primary verb; to whelm, that is, cover wholly with a fluid; in the New Testament only in a qualified or specific sense, that is, (literally) to moisten (a part of one’s person), or (by implication) to stain (as with dye): - dip.
iii. The English "baptize" has the same meaning as the Greek word "baptizo" because it IS the same word.
a. Baptize - Etymology - [a. F. baptise-r, -izer (11th c.), ad. L. baptiza-re, ad. Gr. βaπτξειν ‘to immerse, bathe, wash, drench,’ in Christian use appropriated to the religious rite, f. βάπτειν to dip, plunge, bathe.]
1. trans. To immerse in water, or pour or sprinkle water upon, as a means of ceremonial purification, or in token of initiation into a religious society, especially into the Christian Church; to christen.
b. Immerse - 1. trans. To dip or plunge into a liquid; to put overhead in water, etc.; spec. to baptize by immersion.
c. Since the word "baptize" means to immerse, it stands to reason that the proper mode of immersion is immersion.
d. To immerse in any other mode than immersion is not immersion.
e. To immerse by sprinkling or pouring water on someone's forehead is asinine doublespeak.
iv. Baptize carries with it a meaning of more than just immersing something in water, but it is completely unreasonable to say that it loses its etymological meaning of to immerse when it is used to describe the Christian ordinance of baptism.
a. To baptize means to immerse a person in water upon repentance and a confession of faith in Jesus Christ, which adds them to the membership of a local church.
b. Because the definition includes more than immersion doesn't mean it doesn't include immersion.
c. Every baptism is an immersion, but every immersion is not a baptism (which is why baptizo is translated as wash (Luk 11:38) sometimes).
d. On the other hand, to use a transliteration of a word that means to immerse (baptizo) to describe something that is not an immersion (pouring or sprinkling) makes no sense.
e. In similar fashion, Christ is a transliteration of Christos which means "anointed".
f. Obviously, when Jesus is called Christ, that carries with it a lot more than the fact that he was anointed, but doesn't cease to mean that He was anointed.
g. To call Jesus Christ if He wasn't anointed would make no sense, just like it makes no sense to call pouring water on a baby's head a baptism.
v. As was before proved, baptism is a figure of salvation in Christ (1Pe 3:21).
a. The gospel of our salvation is the story of how Jesus died, was buried, and rose again for our justification (1Co 15:3-4; Rom 4:25).
b. In baptism we are symbolically buried with Christ (Rom 6:4; Col 2:12).
1) Immersion in water symbolized Christ's burial quite well as he was "in the heart of the earth" (Mat 12:40).
2) Christ's burial was not by sprinkling or pouring dirt on His forehead.
3) "Baptism" by sprinkling or pouring hardly symbolizes a burial.
c. By baptism we are symbolically planted in the likeness of His death (Rom 6:5).
1) Planted - ppl. 1. Set in the ground, as a plant; fixed in the ground, set up, established, etc.; placed surreptitiously or misleadingly; hidden esp. so as to deceive the discoverer:
2) Plant - v. 1. a. trans. To set or place in the ground so that it may take root and grow
3) Jesus described planting as a corn of wheat falling into the ground (Joh 12:24).
4) To plant is to place something IN the ground, not to sprinkle a proportionally minute bit of dust on a seed (the equivalent to sprinkling water on someone's forehead to immerse them).
5) "Baptism" by sprinkling or pouring hardly symbolizes planting.
vi. The Bible clearly shows that baptism was done by immersion which required much water and for people to be in the water.
a. John baptized in Aenon because there was MUCH water there (Joh 3:23).
1) Why would John need to be in a place where there was MUCH water to sprinkle a few drops on people's heads?
2) It's obvious much water was needed to immerse people.
b. John baptized people IN Jordan, not BY Jordan (Mat 3:6; Mar 1:5).
1) Jesus when He was baptized of John went up straightway OUT OF the water (Mat 3:16; Mar 1:10).
2) Why would people be IN Jordan if John was sprinkling water on their heads?
c. The Ethiopian eunuch asked what hindered him to be baptized when he and Phillip came to a certain water (Act 8:36).
1) Why would seeing a certain water (in other words a body of water of some type) prompt the eunuch to ask about being baptized if all that was needed was a couple of drops out of a canteen?
2) To be baptized, both he and Phillip went down INTO the water and came up OUT OF the water (Act 8:38-39).
3) Why get into the water to only sprinkle a couple of drops on his head?
4) Some may object that they were in the desert (Act 8:26) so there would not have been enough water to be immersed.
A. Desert - 1. An uninhabited and uncultivated tract of country; a wilderness
B. A desert in those days didn't mean an arid place with no water (Mar 6:35-39).
C. Even if it was, God can change that (Isa 41:18).
E. A proper belief.
i. A confession of one's belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God is a necessary requirement to be baptized (Act 8:36-38).
ii. A confession that one is a sinner is also necessary to be baptized (Mat 3:6; Mar 1:5).
iii. These two requirements prohibit infants and children who are too young to make these sincere confessions from being baptized.
F. A proper result.
i. The proper result of baptism is the addition of the baptized person to the membership of a local church.
ii. The pattern of baptism resulting in being added to a church is found in Act 2:41.
a. Being added unto them was the result of being baptized.
b. The them which they were added to is the church at Jerusalem which had about 120 members named on a role (Act 1:15) who were assembled together, all with one accord in one place (Act 2:1).
c. It is obvious that they were added to the church because they continued from that time forward having church, which consisted of the apostles' doctrine (preaching) and fellowship, breaking of bread (communion), and prayers (Act 2:42).
d. Just to clear up any misunderstanding of what they were added to, we are told, that the Lord added to the church daily (Act 2:47).
e. If it be argued that the "Then...: and..." grammatical construction of Act 2:41 proves that the being added to the church was not a result of being baptized, then consider the identical construction of the following verses:
1) Exo 19:5-6 - "Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation...."
2) Jdg 12:6 - "...Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan: and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand."
3) Jer 36:4 - "Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah: and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book.
4) Jer 36:32 - "Then took Jeremiah another roll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah; who wrote therein from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire: and there were added besides unto them many like words."
5) Each of these verses demonstrate that the "Then...: and..." grammatical construction shows that whatever comes after the ":and..." is a result or intricately connected to what preceded it.
6) The same thing applies to Act 2:41.
iii. When the preacher is baptizing a person in water which outwardly adds him to the church, the Holy Spirit is spiritually baptizing him into the body of Christ (1Co 12:13).
a. The body of Christ in context is the local church (1Co 12:14-27).
b. This is the gift of the Holy Ghost (Act 2:38).
c. Being made to drink into one Spirit (1Co 12:13) is receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, which is what Jesus referred to when He said If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink (Joh 7:37-39).

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