Bible truths about Water Baptism

This article analyses the Biblical truths about water baptism and how God requires His people to become water baptized.

He that BELIEVETH and is BAPTIZED shall be SAVED; but he that believeth not [about the need for Baptism] shall be damned [in Hell].”   (Mark 16:16)

Throughout the past two thousand years, water baptism has been an outward symbol of a Christian’s public demonstration of their faith.  This study will look at the following topics associated with Water Baptism.

  1. Opposing beliefs and practices within Christianity to Water Baptism
  2. Non-biblical ways to baptize
  3. The spiritual meaning of baptism
  4. The process of Water Baptism

There are some Christian denominational churches and cults that hold opposing views to the Bible’s account of what water baptism represents, so we will have a brief look at these.

Opposing views within Christianity to Water Baptism

There are certain church denominations within the broader context of Christianity that depart from the generally accepted method of water baptism by full immersion.  In this, their preference is to baptize babies — usually through sprinkling of water over their heads.  This form of water baptism ceremony is much the same for babies and adults.

The following list of churches that perform a sprinkling water baptism are these:

  • Catholics,
  • Eastern and Oriental Orthodox,
  • Anglicans,
  • Lutherans,
  • Presbyterians,
  • Congregationalists
  • Methodists,
  • Nazarenes,
  • Moravian Church.
Infant Baptism - josh-applegate-mjn1LcoU1Cw-unsplash

This form of water baptism is false, because to first become ‘Saved’, one first has to:

  • HEAR the Gospel,
  • BELIEVE it, and then
  • ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST as their Savior with one’s mouth (Rom 10:9-10)

No infant is able achieve those requirements prior to undergoing water baptism.

This means that the process of water baptism associated with the above listed churches is false because it generally represents the ‘faith’ of the parents placing their faith in what their church believes and NOT placing their faith in the words of the Bible.

It also means that anyone who has been water baptized as an infant in one of the above churches is NOT ‘Saved’.  If anyone has participated in a ‘sprinkling baptism’ in the past, they need to CONFESS IT AS A SIN (of their parents) and ask God to forgive their sin (Nehemiah 9:2).

Another Non-biblical way to ‘Baptize’

The Bible speaks about “baptism of the dead”:

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?”   (1 Cor 15:29)

This rather bizarre ‘water baptism’ shown to the right takes the verse above from the Apostle Paul above and twists it into something he never meant it to be. 

In this, the Mormon cult create this elaborate fount and say this to justify their heresy of baptizing alive people for their deceased ancestors:

Mormon Baptismal

Baptism for the Dead is Unscriptural

  1. It is a law of Scripture that every doctrine must be proved by two or more scriptures (2 Cor 13:1; Matt 18:16; Deut 19:15-18) but this verse is the only one that casually mentions the subject.
  2. Those in the Corinthian Church were involved in many errors and heresies (1 Cor. 11:19). Their belief and practice of Baptism for the Dead was only one of these heresies.
  3. Water baptism alone does not ‘Finally Save’.  Only a living man who repents and meets the gospel’s Conditions of Salvation [Matt 10:22] becomes ‘Saved’.  Similarly, water baptism cannot not ‘Save’ a dead man who did not meet conditions while he was alive. (Luke 13:1-5; Rom 10:9-10; Eph 2:8-9; 1 John 1:9).
  4. Salvation is a personal matter and cannot be obtained by anyone else standing in as a proxy (Mark 16:16; Luke 13:1-5; John 3:16-20; Acts 3:19; Rom 1:16; Rom 10:9-10; Eph 2:8-9).
  5. Here, Paul is simply showing the inconsistency of false teachers at Corinth who were denying the Doctrine of the Resurrection and yet accepting the fallacy of Baptism for the Dead.  He does not sanction such a doctrine or practice just because he makes one passing reference to this error.

The Biblical method of Water Baptism

The method of water baptism described in the Bible is by full immersion. This is seen by John the Baptist baptising Jesus. It is also seen by Phillip baptising the Ethiopian eunuch.

Christ’s water baptism

"And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:"  (Matthew 3:16)

The eunuch’s water baptism

"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.  39 And when they were come up out of the water..." (Acts 8:38-39 

The spiritual significance of Water Baptism

The person baptising someone else (the new Christian) MUST inform them of the CONDITIONS associated with Salvation. A number of these CONDITIONS can be found identified in my article The Ten Commandments of Jesus.

After the new Christian understands and then accepts these CONDITIONS, the baptism can then take place.

The Water Baptism Ceremony

When the new Christian prepares to enter the water:

  • He or she must first confess some of their sins openly (Matthew 3:6).
  • The new Christian must then recite from their heart that Jesus Christ:
    Was with God in the beginning, being known as ‘The Word’ (John 1:1);
    Was born of the virgin Mary and became the only begotten Son of God (Matt 1:23);
    Lived His early life as a carpenter (Matthew 13:55); 
    Suffered rejection and hatred towards Him from the religious Jews (John 10:31-32; John 15:18);
    — The Jews falsely accused Him to Pilate, causing Him to be murdered (Mark 15:14-15);
    Christ shed His blood on the cross to pay the price for sin to anyone who calls upon Him in faith (John 19:33-35; John 19:34);
    Three days and nights after He died, He rose again from the dead very early on the first day of the week (Matthew 12:40; Mark 16:9);
    — He later ascended into Heaven after revealing Himself to over 500 witnesses (1 Cor. 15:3-7; Acts 1:1-11);
  • I now accept Him as my Saviour from Hell.
  • I now choose to be one of His disciples so as to live forever with Jesus.
  • After saying the words above, the new Christian is then placed under the water to symbolise their death to the things in this sinful world;
  • He or she is then raised up out of the water to symbolise their spiritual resurrection from the dead and the commencement of their new life in Christ!

The Biblical truth about water baptism shown above symbolically represents the signing of a contract between God and the new Christian. If the CONDITIONS of the contract are fulfilled by the Christian, God will honour His responsibility to grant him or her eternal life with Him.



2 Replies to “Bible truths about Water Baptism”

  1. Hello Howard,

    Thanks for contacting me and sharing with me your scripture verses.

    Despite the many verses and words you quoted, you failed to explain to me what your purpose for writing was.

    I have assumed that you didn’t like something that I wrote about Water Baptism. As you have not quoted anything that I wrote in which I can offer some comment, this makes it difficult for me to respond.

    Maybe you might care to email me again – and this time, be more specific by quoting some of my words and adding some comments to clarify your concerns?

    Thanks again and blessings Howard,


  2. What must I do to be saved? How do I call on the name of The Lord?
    Glory honor and praises to God The Father, Son and Holy Spirit for ever and ever.

    The authority of The Word of God:: from The Holy Spirit:
    Matt 24:35Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
    2 Peter CH:1
    20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. 5 For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, in the Holy Spirit,and with much assurance. You know what kind of men we were among you for your benefit, 6 and you became imitators of us and of the Lord when, in spite of severe persecution, you welcomed the message with joy from the Holy Spirit.
    Gal 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! 9 As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse!
    REV 22:18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. 19 And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.

    John 1:11~ He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. Matt3:10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.
    11“I baptize you with b water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with c the Holy Spirit and fire. 12His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
    The Great Commission Matt 28:16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
    Acts 2:21 And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
    Acts 2:36 Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.”37When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.
    Please Note: The power of the cross and The Great Commission was complete after the resurrection. Romans 6:3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized >> into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 1Peter 3:21~ ~It (baptism) saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, John 3:3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again .” Note: “we too may live a new life”
    John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit (Holy Spirit).
    Heb 11:5 By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” a For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. 6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
    God tested Abraham’s faith: 2 Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love: Isaac and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.”
    ….12“Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, ” Note:(son of promise)
    13 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram a caught by its horns.
    God spared Abraham’s son Isaac but did not spare his only son Jesus so we could have eternal life.
    Heb 2:3 ~~How shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation?
    SEE >> CH:13&14
    Numbers 14:30 Not one of you will enter the land I swore with uplifted hand to make your home, except Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun. Note:(By faith in God’s power through them)
    Why do you pray if you do not have faith!!? Please do not be a chicken or put you head in the sand!
    Luke13:3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. 4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.” HEB 9:26 But he (Christ) has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. Phil 2:9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name 10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,11and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. I Cor 12:3 Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.
    Note: YOU must believe that Jesus is Lord of the Universe, God The Son, The Messiah and that God raised him from the dead on third day: >>
    Rev 1:17 When I (John) saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. 18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades. Rom 10:9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. Acts 10:44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. 45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Acts 11:15 “As I (Peter) began to speak, the Holy Spirit came on them (Gentiles) as he had come on us at the beginning. 16 Then I remembered what the Lord had said: ‘John (The Baptist) baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 So if God gave them the same gift he gave us who believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to think that I could stand in God’s way?” 1Cor 12:13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
    NOTE: John’s Baptism is act of repentance. Not yet in the name of Jesus: Acts 19:1 While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when a you believed?”
    They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”
    3 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?” “John’s baptism,” they replied.
    4 Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all. EPH 1:13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession to the praise of his glory.
    Titus 3:4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.
    Note: Faith of salvation is direct function of washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. James 2:22 Abraham’s Faith: You see that faith was active together with his works, and by works, faith was perfected.

    Note: POST (After): Cross, Resurrection, Pentecost; DURING: Post Ascension, Holy Spirit Dispensation: Great Commission; (Pre-Gentile calling: Acts 10) (righteous)

    Note: The Holy Spirit leads Philip in this salvation process. What do you think Philip told the eunuch during the good news about Jesus as he believed? NOW do not add any thing beyond the Word Of God!
    26 An angel of the Lord spoke to Philip: “Get up and go south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” (This is the desert road.) 27 So he got up and went. There was an Ethiopian man, a eunuch and high official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of her entire treasury. He had come to worship in Jerusalem 28 and was sitting in his chariot on his way home, reading the prophet Isaiah aloud.
    29 The (Holy Spirit) Spirit told Philip, “Go and join that chariot.”
    30 When Philip ran up to it, he heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, “Do you understand what you’re reading? ”
    31 “How can I,” he said, “unless someone guides me? ” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the Scripture passage he was reading was this:
    Note: ~755 Years before the Holy Spirit gives Isaiah the Word (Isaiah:53) He was led like a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb is silent before its shearer, so He does not open His mouth. 33 In His humiliation justice was denied Him. Who will describe His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.
    34 The eunuch replied to Philip, “I ask you, who is the prophet saying this about — himself or another person? ” 35 So Philip proceeded to tell him the good news about Jesus, beginning from that Scripture.
    36 As they were traveling down the road, they came to some water. The eunuch said, “Look, there’s water! What would keep me from being baptized? ” 37And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart you may.” And he replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” 38 Then he ordered the chariot to stop, and both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him. 39 When they came up out of the water, the (Holy Spirit) Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him any longer. But he went on his way rejoicing. 40 Philip appeared in Azotus, and he was traveling and evangelizing all the towns until he came to Caesarea.
    Note: The Holy Spirit lead Philip to this event and then supernaturally transported Philip to Azotus (Ashdod) approx some 20 miles away.
    John:3 & Post Resurrection: Romans:6 >H2O_submersed in name of F&S&HS+Holy Spirit(ReGen)=Old man of sin^ReGen && (Luke 12:50(Power_of_cross)>>NewLife
    HEAR(GoodNews)>FAITH>BELIEVE>CONFESS(Jesus is Lord)>REPENT guess what is next !?
    Know wonder Peter was surprised in Acts CH:10

    EPH 1:4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. Rom 8:14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. Rom 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
    Rom 8:33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Jer1:4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 5“Before I formed you in the womb I knew a you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
    1John 1:8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us. Matt 7:21“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
    Matt 10: 32“Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
    32“Therefore, everyone who will acknowledge Me before men, I will also acknowledge him before My Father in heaven.av 33But whoever denies Me before men,aw I will also deny him before My Father in heaven
    Luke 9: 26 Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.
    Mark 8:38If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
    Heb 2:1We must pay the most careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. 2For since the message spoken through angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, 3how shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. 4God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
    John 8:58 “Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!”:: Note: He came from the sky to the womb (incarnation): He bled and died for you to pay for your sins in advance. “Up from the grave He arose” and back to the sky:
    Acts 1:9 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.10They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11“Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”
    John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you_
    Would you like to become a friend of Jesus? Today is the day of salvation!
    Do not let the sun go down until YOU know Jesus the Son of God!

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