The following is a comment in response to Mark Ballenger’s article, “Should You Be Baptized More than Once?” The article and comment can explain this post. God bless those who read:
I appreciate the sincerity that you demonstrate is seeking the truth. James D. G. Dunn has a book about the Holy Spirit and regeneration. I find your position similar if not the same as Dunn.
However, upon studying the Scriptures, my search has led to other conclusions. I hope we both remain open to reconsider how we handle God’s Word. Consider that Jesus commanded baptism in the name of the Father, Son, and Spirit when he rose from the dead (Matt 28:19-20). The baptism that Jesus commanded in his resurrection is the one baptism (Eph 4:5). Peter preached this baptism in Jesus’s name in Acts 2:38. This is a baptism of faith and repentance (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38). Peter also proclaimed that the forgiveness of sins is in Jesus’s name (Acts 10:43). That baptism in Jesus’s name is also in water (Acts 10:47–48). This baptism is not separate from the gift of the Spirit (Acts 2:38). Baptism in Christ’s name is the baptism of 1 Corinthians (1:13). First Corinthians 6:11 records a washing in Jesus’s name as when the Spirit justifies and sanctifies. This passage reveals that 1 Corinthians 12:13 refers to the same baptism and not to another baptism of the Spirit. First Corinthians 10:1–2 indicates that this baptism in Jesus’s name is in water. Furthermore, Paul revealed that those who reject the resurrection change baptism from the resurrected to a baptism of the dead (1 Cor 15:29). Colossians 2:12 and Romans 6:4 associate the dynamic symbolism of baptism as the burial from the dead as you accurately described. This baptism partakes of the reality of Jesus’s death, burial, and resurrection that saves believers (1 Cor 15:1–4). Baptism in Jesus’s name is passive just as God rises the believer from burial to new life. No one can boast of such as a work. I urge you to consider that baptism in Jesus’s name is the moment of salvation by grace when one rises with Christ alive (Eph 2:1–10). Faith is the means of salvation and yet the believer’s rising with Christ from baptism is the condition of faith.
May God bless you in the study of His Word.
Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I think you would like John Stott’s book, “Baptism And Fullness: The Work of the Holy Spirit Today.” Water baptism is an outward sign of an inward change. We are saved “by grace,” “through faith,” and “for good works” prepared in advance by God for us to do (Ephesians 2:8-10). As described in my article, the baptism of the Holy Spirit happens at the moment of conversion, and water baptism is the fruit that a true convert will exhibit as he/she seeks to obey Christ’s commands and example.
Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!
Thank you, Mark. I agree concerning Eph 2. I will look into Stott’s book. However, I still see the baptism into the body by one Spirit as the same as baptism in Jesus’s name.