Why must one be baptized?

Published 8:12 am Friday, September 21, 2018

It seems that in the religious confusion of our age, regardless of what one may believe, we can find someone advocating for each belief. This happens regardless of the biblical opposition to many beliefs. Such is the case when it comes to the Bible doctrine of baptism. The question has been asked, “Why must one be baptized?”
As we consider the question, it is obvious from the scriptures that there are several reasons why baptism is essential. Consider without prejudice the following reasons one must be baptized:
First, baptism puts us into the death of Jesus and allows us to contact the saving power of the blood of Jesus. Paul said, “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” Romans 6:3-4 KJV. See also (John 19:31-37; Mt. 26:28).
Second, baptism is the medium that allows us to put on Christ. Paul said, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:26-27 KJV). Having put on Christ in baptism we should realize that it is in Christ where we find all spiritual blessings. If we do not get into Christ we lose the blessings He offers. Paul said, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3 KJV). See also (2 Cor. 5:17).
Third, baptism allows us to be put into the kingdom. This was the case on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2. Luke said that those being saved were added to the church (Acts 2:47). Those being saved were following the commands given by Peter in Acts 2:48.
Fourth, baptism is essential for salvation according to (Mk. 16:16; 1 Pet. 3:21). Peter said, “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 3:21 KJV). This shows us that Peter agrees to the command given by Jesus in (Mark 16:16).
Fifth, baptism is the point that our sins are washed away, (Acts 2:38; 22:16). This was what Paul understood when he became obedient to the act of baptism. And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord (Acts 22:16 KJV). To believe contrary is to affirm that we have people in the church previous to having their sins washed away.
Sixth, in obeying the command to be baptized we answer the call of the Holy Spirit through the Word of God. Paul said, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bound or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:13 KJV). The one body is no doubt the church Jesus died to establish and answering the call allows us to be in the one body. See also (Eph. 6:17; 2 Thess. 2:14).
Seventh, in obeying the call of baptism we obey the commands of Jesus (Col. 3:17; John 12:48). Jesus said, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19 KJV).
Eighth, one must be baptized to follow the example of Jesus in submitting to all righteousness according to (Mt. 3:13-16; 1 Pet. 2:21).
Finally, one must be baptized because the acts of conversion in the New Testament followed the command of baptism for the remission of sins. (Acts 2:38-47; 8:12; 8:36-39; 10:47-48; 16:14-15; 16:30-33; 18:8; 19:5; 22:16).
(Tony Hoss is minister at Centerview Church of Christ, Elizabethton.)

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