reply to post by holywar
DOCTRINE OF THE SEVEN BAPTISMS
A. Baptism means identification or association.
1. This meaning began in Homer's time. Homer wrote of the giant
Ulysses who took a piece of hot metal and rammed it into Cyclop's one eye,
and called it "baptizing." Homer's Odyssey, book 9, used baptism for hot
metal identified with water when a smith dipped a piece of hot iron into
2. Xenophon said that the Spartans baptized their spears by putting
them into a bowl of blood.
3. Euripides used the word for a ship identified with the bottom of
the sea when it sank.
4. So "baptize" in the classical Greek meant to identify one thing
with another thing so that the characteristic of the original thing was
changed into another characteristic by what was identified with it.
Therefore, the interpretation of the word "baptism" is identification.
5. The Greek word BAPTIZO has been transliterated "to cleanse by
washing, to immerse, to dip, to baptize" Jn 13:26.
6. The Greek word BAPTO means to identify, to intimately unite, to
dip, Lk 16:24. In Rev 19:13 it is used to dye a piece of cloth.
7. The Greek word BAPTISMA is used of ritual identification, Mt 3:7,
21:25; Rom 6:4.
8. The Greek noun BAPTISMOS means cleaning, washing dishes; in Heb 6:2
it means "baptisms."
9. The Greek word BAPTISES refers to one who performs the ritual of
baptism, Mt 3:1, 6:25, 11:11.
B. There are two categories of identification in Scripture:
1. An actual identification is called a real baptism.
2. A representative identification is called a ritual baptism. It
C. There are four real baptisms in the Bible, meaning there is an actual
identification with something that has significance.
1. 1 Cor 10:1-2 presents the baptism of Moses, "For I do not want you
to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all
passed through the sea; and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in
the sea." This was a real identification in which Moses was identified with
the open path through the Red Sea and the Jews were identified with Moses.
Water was not involved here. Only Egyptian unbelievers were immersed in the
water as a means of death. Identification with the mandates of true
leadership is the concept here. Moses was identified with the cloud or
Jesus Christ, and the people were identified with Moses.
2. The baptism of the Cross is found in Mt 20:22; Mk 10:38-39; Lk
12:50. This baptism is our Lord Jesus Christ being identified with our
sins. This refers to the judicial imputation of personal sins to Jesus
Christ on the cross. Jesus Christ was identified with our personal sins and
judged for them, so that Christ became our Savior. As sinners, none of
those to whom Christ spoke were qualified to be baptized with sin on the
3. The baptism of the Holy Spirit occurs at salvation for Church Age
believers only, 1 Cor 12:13, "For by means of one Spirit we were all
baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and
we were all made to drink of one Spirit."
a. This baptism is God the Holy Spirit identifying us with the
Lord Jesus Christ forever. It is the means of forming the royal family and
of breaking the back of the old sin nature as the ruler of human life. We
are positionally changed. No water is involved in this baptism. We are
identified with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection, Eph 4:5; Acts
1:5. The Holy Spirit enters us into union with Christ at the right hand of
the Father, making us positionally higher than angels.
b. Rom 6:3-5, "Or do you not know that all of us who have been
baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death [positional
sanctification]? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism
into [His] death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the
glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life [experiential
sanctification]. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of
His death, and not only this we shall also be [united with Him] in the
likeness of His resurrection [ultimate sanctification]."
c. Gal 3:26-28.
d. The Greek prepositional phrase EN plus the locative of place
of CHRISTOS meaning "in Christ" and the prepositional phrase EIS plus the
accusative of CHRISTOS meaning "into Christ" both indicate positional
e. Characteristics of the baptism of the Spirit.
(1) The baptism of the Spirit is not an experience.
(2) The baptism of the Spirit is not emotional activity or
(3) It is not speaking in tongues.
(4) It is not related to human feeling.
(5) It is not progressive, therefore, it cannot be improved.
(6) It is not related to human merit or works.
(7) It is obtained en toto at the moment of salvation
through faith in Christ alone.
(8) The baptism of the Spirit is eternal in nature and
cannot be cancelled.
(9) The baptism of the Spirit is known through perception of
the mystery doctrine of the Church Age. Therefore, it cannot be applied in
a state of ignorance. No one can sin in the sphere of positional truth.
(10) The baptism of the Spirit is not a matter of the
4. The baptism of fire is the real identification of unbelieving Jews
and Gentiles at the end of the Tribulation with fire in Hades, taught in Mt
3:11, "As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is
coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals;
He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire." Lk 3:16; Rev 19:11.
The unbeliever is identified with fire forever. The Tribulational
unbeliever is identified with the defeat of Satan. All unbelievers are
removed from the earth for the start of the Millennium.
D. There are three ritual baptisms. None are extant at the present time.
They are representative identifications in which water is used as a training
aid to represent some principle of doctrine. Water represents something
else in a ritual baptism. The person going into the water must have
knowledge of the meaning of the ritual.
1. The baptism of John is found in Mt 3:1-10; Jn 1:25-33. John lived
in the ritual age of Israel. The water represented the kingdom of God.
a. There had to be a ceremony never used before to identify a
person with the kingdom of God because the King was present. The water
represented the kingdom of God as John was preaching it. Putting a person
in the water showed that he was identified with Messiah and that kingdom.
It was an encouragement and means of relating doctrine to the fact the
kingdom was being offered during the first Advent. The kingdom was
postponed, but this did not change the significance of John's baptism.
b. There was no spiritual advance in this baptism; only doctrine
advances the believer.
c. This baptism was never practiced after John's death. John and
his ministry and his baptism were unique.
d. In the water the person testified to his belief that the
Messiah would go to the cross to die for his sins, recognizing that because
he accepted Christ as Savior before He died and accepted Him as King, he was
saved and identified in the Jewish kingdom forever.
2. The baptism of Jesus Christ was unique. John recognized Jesus
Christ's impeccability and refused to baptize Him. Jesus told him the water
represented something new, i.e., the Father's plan and will for the
dispensation of the hypostatic union--to begin His public ministry and to go
to the cross and receive the personal sins of mankind and be judged. So at
the beginning of His earthly ministry, Christ identified Himself with the
a. In the water, Jesus was saying He would fulfill God's plan and
live a perfect life under the greatest testing and then go to the Cross as a
perfect person and receive the imputation of all personal sins, Mt 3:13-17.
b. As He came out of the water, Jesus recognized that when He
completed the plan of the Father by being judged for our sins and then dying
physically, He would be resurrected, followed by His ascension and session.
Coming up out of the water was a picture of His resurrection.
3. Christian water baptism is the ritual testimony of the baptism of
the Holy Spirit. There had to be a testimony before the Canon was written
to explain the baptism of the Spirit. From the beginning of the Church Age
until the completion of the Canon, this baptism was necessary to teach the
principle of the baptism of the Holy Spirit at salvation. But once the
Canon was completed this ritual was no longer necessary, since the
explanation for the baptism of the Spirit is now in writing.
a. The purpose of Jesus Christ on the cross, His resurrection,
ascension and session, and the beginning of a new Church Age had to be
portrayed with ritual until the Canon was completed.
b. Water baptism was used as a training aid for new, weak
believers, just as certain temporary spiritual gifts were used to teach
until the Canon was completed.
c. In the water, the believer recognized that he was identified
with Jesus Christ in His spiritual death, physical death, and burial, i.e.,
retroactive positional truth. Identification with His spiritual death meant
rejection of good and evil. Identification with His physical death and
burial meant separation from good and evil.
d. Coming out of the water was recognition of being identified
with Christ as He is now seated at the right hand of the Father, i.e.,
current positional truth.
e. Paul tells the Corinthians he stopped using water baptism
because it was a means of dividing believers, Acts 2:38, 8:36-38, 16:15,33;
1 Cor 1:11-17. So before Romans 6:3-4 and 1 Cor 12 were written to explain
the baptism of the Spirit and identification with Christ in His death and
resurrection, water baptism was used to represent what had happened at
salvation to those who did not yet have the completed Canon.