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THE EIGHT BAPTISMS OF THE BIBLE (1)

Victor M. Eskew

 

INTRODUCTION

 

A.    Baptism is a subject that divides many religious groups. 

1.      It doesn’t save; it does save.

2.      It is by immersion only; it is by sprinkling, pouring, and immersion.

3.      It must be done by Jesus’ authority; it must be done with the phrase “in the name of Jesus.”

4.      It is accompanied with speaking in tongues; it is not accompanied with speaking in tongues.

5.      It is for adult believers only; it is for adults and babies.

6.      It can be done in any water; it must be done in running water.

 

B.      Perhaps what all need to do is go back to the Bible and study the subject of baptism.

 

C.     When we do, we will find that there are numerous baptisms mentioned in the Bible.  In this lesson, we want to discuss briefly, four of  “The Eight Baptisms of the Bible.”

 

I.                   THE BAPTISMS OF THE OLD COVENANT

 

A.    The word “baptize” is not found in the Old Testament.  It is not found there in any of its forms such as baptized, baptism, baptizing, or baptisms.

 

B.      In Hebrews 6:2, the inspired writer mentions “the doctrines of baptisms.”  Let’s start reading in Hebrews 6:1.  (See Hebrews 9:10, “washings”).

 

Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrines 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 doctrines of baptisms…

 

1.      The Hebrew Christians to whom this letter was written were returning to Judaism. 

2.      The writer is exhorting them not to do this. 

3.      In this verse, he tells them that they need to leave the principles of the doctrines of Christ.

a.      These were the teachings of the OT that pointed men to the Christ and the Christian system.

b.      Instead of returning to those things, they needed to “go on unto perfection.”

c.       One of the things he mentions their needing to leave was “the doctrines of baptisms.”

 

C.     The baptisms of the Old Covenant were various washings that were authorized.

1.      The person who was cured of a skin disease had to bathe in water (Lev. 14:8-9)

2.      When a person with a discharge was cleansed, he had to bathe in water (Lev. 15:13).

3.      Those who ate an animal that died naturally or was mauled by wild beasts had to wash their bodies with water (Lev. 17:15-16).

4.      On the day of atonement (Lev. 16)

a.      Aaron had to bathe after entering the most holy place

b.      The person who released the scapegoat had to wash with water.

c.       The person who sacrificed the bull and goat had to wash with water also.

5.      NOTE:

a.      These washings were connected with cleansing, purification, and sanctification.   

b.      These washings were only for the physical body, not the inner man.

 

II.                BAPTISM FOR THE DEAD

 

A.    The baptism for the dead is only mentioned one time in the Bible (I Cor. 15:29).

 

Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all?  Why are they then baptized for the dead?

 

B.      There is not a person on earth who knows exactly what the meaning of this baptism really is. 

1.      The Mormons teach that those who are living can be baptized for those who have died and were outside of Christ.  (NOTE:  This teaching contradicts plain Bible teaching, see Prov. 11:7; Luke 16:25-31; Heb. 9:27).

 

When a wicked man dieth, his expectation shall perish:  and the hope of unjust men perisheth.

 

2.      In an article entitled, “Baptism for the Dead?”, by Dave Miller of Apologetics Press sets forth four different views of the baptism for the dead.

 

C.     The one that seems to make the most sense involves Paul using a custom of others of his day to make his point about the resurrection of the dead.

1.      Notice that Paul says:  “what shall THEY’ do…?”  This seems to indicate individuals other than Christians.

2.      There were groups in Paul’s day who were baptizing for the dead in order to bring purification to their lives.

3.      If there was no resurrection, Paul was asking the church:  “Why would they baptize for the dead?”  The practice would be for naught.

 

III.             BAPTISM UNTO MOSES

 

A.    The Old Testament is filled with types and shadows.  These are representations of things that were to come (See Heb. 10:1a).

 

For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image…

 

B.      The children of Israel in Egypt, their exodus from the land, and the wilderness wanderings all involve shadows of the Christian age to come. 

 

C.     One element of this type was Moses’ baptism (I Cor. 10:1-2).

 

Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea.

 

1.      Prior to their exodus, the children of Israel were in bondage to a very harsh taskmaster, the Pharaoh of Egypt.

2.      The children of Israel were baptized.

a.      The word “baptize” means to be whelmed, overwhelmed, submerged, and immersed.

b.      The Israelites had the waters of the Red Sea stand on either side of them.  Over them was a cloud.  Clouds are filled with water.  They were completely surrounded, that is, baptized in the cloud and in the sea.

c.       Once they had passed through the Red Sea, they were free, not before.  Salvation was on the other side of their baptism. 

3.      NOTE:  This is a clear representation of the “one baptism” of the New Testament (Eph. 4:5).  We will discuss its likeness when we study that particular baptism.  Once there, we will point out is that it proves baptism is necessary to one’s salvation.

 

IV.             THE BAPTISM OF SUFFERING

 

A.    Keep in mind that baptism means to be overwhelm, completely submerged in something.

 

B.      In Matthew 20:22, Jesus uses the word baptism and applies it to His suffering.

 

But Jesus answered and said, Ye know not what ye ask.  Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?  They say unto him, We are able.

 

1.      Jesus had already been baptized with John’s baptism.

2.      He now speaks of another baptism.  This is the baptism of suffering.

a.      Jesus would be completely submerged in suffering.

1)      His mind and body were afflicted.

2)      His entire body, from His head to his feet, was afflicted. 

3)      There was not an ounce of His body that did not feel the suffering that came upon him. 

b.      Isaiah describes Him as “a man of sorrows” (Isa. 53:3).  He also describes some of His afflictions (Isa. 53:5).

 

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes we are healed.

 

C.     There are some people who are living today, perhaps you sit in the audience, who know what the baptism of suffering feels like.  You have been completely engulfed in pain, anguish, sorrow, and grief.  You have felt the weight of torment pressing upon you from all sides.    Rest assured:  The Lord understands your anguish.

 

CONCLUSION

 

A.    We have discussed four baptisms.

1.      Two are associated with the Old Testament:  the washings of the OT and the baptism of Moses.

2.      One was associated with individuals of the city of Corinth, the baptism for the dead.

3.      The last as a general type of baptism that came upon our Lord and could come upon all men, the baptism of suffering.

 

B.      We have four more baptisms to discuss.  All of these are associated with the New Testament. 

1.      John’s baptism

2.      Holy Spirit baptism

3.      The baptism of fire

4.      The Lord’s baptism or the one baptism.

 

C.     All of the baptisms are important and interesting.  Only one is involved with man’s salvation today, the Lord’s baptism.  You must experience it to be saved (Mark 16:16).