Baptism of Repentance? Or, Baptism In Him?
By Dan L Baxley
We know that the New Covenant tells us that there is only ONE Baptism –
(Eph 4:4-6) There is one body, and one Spirit, even as you are called in one hope of your calling;(5) One Lord, one faith, one baptism,(6) One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
However, it is clear that there is more than ONE Baptism. What, then, does this One Baptism mean? It is the One and Only Baptism that can be made in His Holy Name, in Him YaHshua and not YaHshua only, but the Father as well. To prove that there are other baptisms, but not the ONE we should seek. Yes, one and only one baptism in Him and the Father, inviting them to dwell with us, but there are other baptisms, such as the Baptism of John, a Baptism of Repentance. As you will see.
(Luke3:3-4) And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins;(4) As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare oue the way of the Lord, make His paths straight.
(Act 13:24) Before the coming of YaHshua, John preached repentance and baptism to all the people of Israel.
John was baptizing but not in the name of our Savior, his was the Baptism of Repentance and it is this Baptism I see most, if not all of the Christian Church in – at least those in serious search of Him. What baptism are those groups in that deny our Lord or that deny each other? That I will leave to the reader to answer. For now let’s continue with defining the One True Baptism.
We read in the book of Acts about a very talented speaker and accomplished teacher, Apollos. He, however, we are told, was of the Baptism of John or Repentance. He did not have a full view of Salvation – close to the Light but not fully.
(Act 18:24) Now a certain Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by race, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus. He was mighty in the Scriptures.
(Act 18:25) This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning YaHshua, although he knew only the baptism of John.
(Act 18:26) He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside, and explained to him the way of the FATHER more accurately.
Notice, it was a husband and wife team that pulled Apollos aside and gave him better information. And how did Apollos respond? He went on to gain quite a following and respect among other believers. Right after he let and continued on his journey, he had obviously accepted the message that Priscilla and Aquila had shared with him, the message of grace – that is, undeserved pardon by the Blood of YaHshua, letting him, Apollos know that there is more to it than just repenting.
(Act 18:27) And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he was come, helped them much which had believed through grace:
(Act 18:28) For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publicly, showing by the scriptures that YaHshua was Christ (The Anointed or Messiah).
We can safely assume that Apollos passed from the Baptism of Repentance into the Baptism of Eternity, into His Baptism, that of our Lord. We have other examples of this other Baptism, other than the Baptism of Repentance, the One we seek and should enter into, a Baptism into His Name. Peter’s First Sermon ended with a call to Baptism – not the Baptism of John, as you will see, or read –
(Act 2:38) Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the Name of YaHshua the Anointed for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Do you see, a baptism that is more than just repentance – first it is to Repent, THEN to be BAPTIZED into His Name. And this is when you or we can receive the GIFT of the HOLY SPIRIT. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the Father and the Son, it is their Life whose source is the Father.
Paul just happened to be following where Apollos had gone before. And coming to Ephesus, Paul came across some believers that had received Apollos message before he had received better instructed from Priscilla and Aquila (as we read earlier). Coming across those whom Apollos had touched with the imperfect Gospel, of Repentance only, Paul set about correcting this. Apollos, apparently was preaching and teaching Repentance, not the full Gospel, as he preached the Baptism of John -- Just as we read next --
Act 19:1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,
Act 19:2 He said to them, Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Spirit.
Act 19:3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were you baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.
Act 19:4 Then said Paul, John verily (truly) baptized with the Bbaptism of Repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on Him which should come after him, that is, on the Anointed (Messiah) YaHshua.
Act 19:5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the Name of the Lord YaHshua.
These disciples had received the Baptism of John. Paul asked them about the Holy Spirit, which they had never heard about. This was corrected by Paul and these disciples were then introduced to the One that John had preached about. We have to assume that Paul went to great lengths in presenting the Messiah to them and their need and reason for being baptized into His Name and this leading to receiving the Holy Spirit. Once they understood this, these disciples were then baptized into the name of YaHshua. Not the false name, JESUS, but His Birth Name, YaHshua, which we still see in the Bible by the Old English, Joshua. I case you are new to this truth – the false name, Jesus, never existed until around 400 years ago, while the name, Joshua, correctly pronounced as YaHshua, has been around for over 3,000 years.
Later, we have another account, this time at Corinth where Paul is dealing with another problem. In this problem people are bragging about whose Baptism they are in. Some say, Apollos and other mention other teachers, but Paul chides them and grumbles about their idiotic claims and says that he is glad that he had not baptized any of them. He could safely say that, too, because, as he states, He was not called to baptize. That’s right, not every teacher or preacher or servant is called to baptize. More on this later. But for now, here is Paul facing fellow believers in the beginnings of division.
(1Co 1:10) Now I beseech you, brethren, by the Name of our Lord YaHshua The Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
(1Co 1:11) For it has been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
(1Co 1:12) Now this I say, that every one of you says, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas (Peter); and I of (the) Christ.
(1Co 1:13) Is (the) Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
(1Co 1:14) I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius;
(1Co 1:15) Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name.
(1Co 1:16) And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.
(1Co 1:17) For (the) Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of (the) Christ should be made of none effect.
Paul was charge with a mission that would go out much further and in all directions. So, when believers came into the truth and the acceptance of YaHshua, what did Paul do? He may have led them to the water be he soon would abandon them to baptizing themselves. Staying with his calling, then, even when he spent a couple of years as a tent maker, he did not baptize people and when He was in house arrest in Rome, for near 3 years, he never baptized anyone. The responsibility for believing is to the listener and the responsibility for the baptism falls to the believer, not the tool used to assist in baptism. If a group then they would, if they wanted, assist each other. If a single person, they do not need anyone at the moment of acceptance and true repentance. The whole situation has changed.
In the First Church evidence was needed to prove who was to be accepted into the Church or the ecclesia (called out ones), or if you prefer, the Congregation of God. The Jewish believers were reluctant to accept gentiles. Gentiles were looked on as unclean. There was a real prejudice, even among the Jewish Apostles, even after Peter had baptized the first gentiles into the Body – the house of Cornelius, and of all things, a Roman Army Commander – Acts 10:45-47.
Later, Peter would be held up for criticism by fellow believers, charging him with having broken Jewish Law, forbidding any Jew from entering a gentiles house. Peter had to defend himself and lucky for him, he had three witnesses with him, to testify what they saw – proving that they were supposed to allow gentiles into the body of believers – even so, later, they just would not do it -- Acts 11:1-4; 18. And for this reason, Paul was called up – Gal 2:9, Acts 13:46; 22:21, 1 Tim 2:7 –
Act 9:15 But the Lord said to Ananias, "Go! This man (Paul) is My chosen instrument to carry My Name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.
Act 9:16 I will show him how much he must suffer for My Name."
Act 22:21 And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee forth far hence unto the Gentiles.
There is another side to this baptism business. The Sign of Baptism had been the speaking in other languages, almost like a possession with uncontrolled speaking about the truth of the word and things happening and going to happen. This method or evidence proved to the Jewish Disciples and Apostles that it was not Jews only but Gentiles too.
(Act 11:16) Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but you shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.
Later, this evidence was no longer needed. Seeking for a sign or miracles became the mark of a weak and degenerate body of believers. Even YaHshua had taught, previously, that to continue seeking for signs and wonders, was not a good idea – Mat 12:39; 16:4. Once the Holy Spirit had prove who was to be allowed into the Body of believers, there would be no further sign given, save the person’s own knowing, and then, it is a thing between the child and the Father and First Fruit Son, YaHshua. And, this is what is meant by –
Php 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
The responsibility is yours and yours alone. Everyone wants to be told what to do, and that is fine for a child first learning to walk but once up and running, as every seeker and believer should be striving to do, then it is up to you and you alone. Repenting is not enough, it is a start, and it can and does lead to lives change for the better, but still, it is not enough.
The serious Christian Church today is one of Repentance but they call on a made up name. Our Savior is represented by His Holy Name and it is this Name that is also connect to the Father and it is by and under this Name that true confession must be made before Salvation or entry into salvation will be allowed.
(John 3:18) He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the Name of the only begotten Son of God.
(Php 2:9) Wherefore God (The Father) also has highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name:
(Php 2:10) That at the Name of YaHshua every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; (11) And that every tongue should confess that YaHshua the Christ (Anointed) is Lord, to the Glory of God the Father.
Do you hear what this is saying? Notice, I have restore His Birth Name to this reading, restoring a Name given to our Lord at birth, a Name that has been in existence for over 3,000 years and the name it replaced, is a name that has only been in existence for 400 years. He was to be name a Name that could be found among men, during His own time in the First Century, not to be renamed later. Can you see the deception?
But, does this have anything to do with salvation? Isn’t it all about the heart? Aren’t we good people, really?
(Act 4:12) Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other Name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Not maybe, not sort of, but by which we MUST be SAVED. We had better get it right. Still, what about the Good Heart?
(Mar 10:18) And YaHshua said unto him, Why call do you me good? there is none good but one, that is, God (The Father).
(Rom 3:23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
1Jn 1:10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and His word is not in us.
In our best day we are not good. YaHshua knew and knows the heart of men and women and expressed he reluctance to trust any of us.
(Mat 15:8) This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips; but their heart is far from Me.
(John 2:24-25) But YaHshua would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. He did not need man's testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man. NIV
1Jn 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
There it is, our Hope, that He will forgive us and by His sacrifice we can be pardoned from our life of sin. But, we must ask for it, we must accept and confess YaHshua and not other as our Savior, the Son of the Living God and in our confession we can be pardoned. Our measure of things is not the same as His and we dare not say that we are without sin. No matter how we may excuse ourselves, we are sinners all, and have all fallen short of His Glory. The only way to achieve a sinless life and to pass from these decaying bodies to one fit for eternity is to confess Him and only Him. And then we pray that He will baptize us by His and the Father’s very own Spirit, which will lead to our being Born Again, or to put it another way, to be re-birthed into the Spirit and into the new Heaven and New Earth.
Men dream about traveling the stars, but in their present condition this is impossible. Still, men such as Elon Muske dream about doing this, and may actually accomplish some sort of vain effort of success, but in truth, we are unfit for outer space. But, moving on into the Future, after all is said and done and we, as humans, find out the why of everything and are in a New Glory, we may have the ability to do just that, to travel the Universe and visit the worlds YaHshua has already created.
(Heb 1:1) God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spoke in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
(Heb 1:2) Has in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds;
(Heb 1:3) Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;
(Rev 21:1) And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
We can barely imagine what He has in store for us. But look at the Angels and our Lord. They are capable of traveling from the regions of the northern stars to earth in minutes or at least a very few hours. Imagine, as the Children of the Living God, being able to travel only as men have dreamed, into the distant places of the Universe. Who can imagine what it is going to be like as we move into eternity?
(1Co 2:9) But as it is written, Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for them that love Him.
First we have to get past all of our denials and admit our need for Him. And what does He say—
(Mat 10:32) Whosoever therefore shall confess Me before men, him will I confess also before My Father which is in heaven.
(Mat 10:33) But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven.
(Heb 13:15) Through Him, then, let us offer up a sacrifice of praise to the FATHER continually, that is, the fruit of lips which proclaim allegiance to His Name.
(Rom 10:8-9) But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth, and in your heart;" that is, the word of faith, which we preach; (9) that if you will confess with your mouth that YaHshua is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
(Rom 10:10) For with the heart, one believes unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
There you have it, the Baptism of Repentance is not what you thought it to be. Repentance, sure but it is the Baptism into His Holy Name that begins your confession, by your own lips that you will be saved and you cannot and must not be confessing anyone but Him. A false name is a false name. What you may think or what I think does not matter, it is what does our Heavenly Father think? His desire is that we all live, that we all confess that we are sinners and need His help and need YaHshua to pay for our sinful past and even our present condition, our sinful nature. We cannot remain in denial, once we see this truth.
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