King James Bible Android App download

Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians

The Foundation of Jesus Christ
Lesson 17

What is the Baptism of Jesus Christ?

The wage of sin is death. When a person dies, the sins dies with him. Death brings a release from the power of sin. Because we have sin, we must die. Fortunately, Jesus Christ died a real death for a Christian’s sins already. Because of his sacrifice, a faithful Christian can never die a natural life death.

To enter into the spiritual life of a Christian, a person must die and be buried with Christ to receive redemption for his sins. The baptism of Christ puts a faithful believer to death. The exact time of the baptism, is the exact time of that person’s death. He is alive no more to the world. He is alive no more to the devil. He is alive no more to himself. He is dead. Symbolically, while a person is under the baptismal waters, he is in his grave. He has died, as Christ did, for sin.



The Baptism of Redemption

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, 2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. 3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. 4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. 5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. (Acts 19:1-6 AV)
393. There are three types of baptism.

1) The baptism of John
2) The baptism of Jesus Christ
3) The baptism of the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit)

394. The baptism of John is the baptism of repentance. This baptism was done before Jesus Christ, and there is no need for the baptism of repentance to ever be done again. The baptism of Jesus Christ is done for people who come after him.

(See exception in notes at end of chapter.)

395. Those people who were baptized by John needed to be baptized again in the name of Jesus Christ to obtain Christ’s redemption.

(See note at end of chapter concerning re-baptism.)

396. The Lord Jesus Christ's baptism cannot be accomplished until one "hears" that belief in Christ Jesus is necessary. To hear means to understand, perceive and comprehend.

397. All people who believe on Jesus Christ must be baptized in his name.

398. The baptism of Christ is a baptism of Redemption.

399. Following the baptism of redemption, a person can receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost. Only those people that have been baptized in Christ can receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost.

400. The baptism of Christ is done with water, and the baptism of the Holy Ghost is done by a person, already baptized with the Holy Ghost, laying hands on the newly baptized person.

We will study the Holy Ghost baptism in the Holy Spirit 001 chapter.

1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 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. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: 6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7 For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8 Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. 10 For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:1-11 AV)
401. John’s baptism of repentance was done by water. It washed the sins of a person away after they had confessed them and repented of them.

402. Jesus Christ’s baptism of redemption is also done by water, but it has a different purpose. The purpose of the baptism of redemption is to bring a person to death. A person is baptized into the death of Jesus Christ.

The wage of sin is death. When a person dies, the sins dies with him. Death brings a release from the power of sin. Because we have sin, we must die. Fortunately, Jesus Christ died a real death for a Christian’s sins already. Because of his sacrifice, a faithful Christian can never die a natural life death.

To enter into the spiritual life of a Christian, a person must die and be buried with Christ to receive redemption for his sins. The baptism of Christ puts a faithful believer to death. The exact time of the baptism, is the exact time of that person’s death. He is alive no more to the world. He is alive no more to the devil. He is alive no more to himself. He is dead. Symbolically, while a person is under the baptismal waters, he is in his grave. He has died, as Christ did, for sin.

403. The dead sinner must rely on grace of the LORD GOD through Jesus Christ, to be resurrected from death to life. Just as Christ was resurrected from his death, so shall his faithful followers be through their belief.

404. As Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, so shall his faithful followers be raised up from their baptismal grave through their belief.

405. The old being and sin of a person is dead. Upon the resurrection, the person is able to walk in the newness of life.

406. Once sin is destroyed through death, a new Christian should not serve sin anymore.

407. A person that is dead is freed from sin.

408. Christ was raised from the dead, and can not die anymore. Death no longer has dominion over him.

409. Christ died into sin once, and lives unto God forever.

410. Faithful believers died into sin once, and live unto God through Lord Jesus Christ forever.

During a the baptism of Christ, a person dies as he goes under the water. He is relinquishing his life at that moment with faith that the very act of joining Christ in death will remove all sin from him and make him holy. The person is also making an act of faith in participating in the resurrection of Christ through the grace of the LORD GOD.

When a person comes up out of the waters of death (separation between the Kingdom of God and the World), he is resurrected with the Lord Jesus Christ. He is a new person. His old being is dead and in the grave. He is resurrected into the new spiritual life with Jesus Christ through grace of the LORD GOD. At the moment a person comes up out of the waters of baptism, and is resurrected into the life of the Kingdom of God, he is the most righteous person on the earth. All of his sin has died, and the power of the LORD GOD has raised him to a precious new life, sin free and holy. From that moment on, he will never experience death again.

All people must die once as a result of original sin. A faithful Christian‘s death is faced in the baptism of Christ. Once baptized, he will never die again. In future studies, we will learn about what physical death feels and looks like to a faithful Christian, and how the faith of a Christian is tested one last time for entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven. Until then, know this...The moment between the physical death of a Christian’s body, and the separation of the soul from that body is non-discernable. In other words, a Christian does not feel the sting of death. The realness a Christian feels in life, is the same realness a Christian feels in death. A Christian does not experience a physical death, because a Christian has already died in baptism. Like Christ, all people can only die once, and like Christ continue to live on unto the LORD GOD for eternity.

38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. (Acts 2:38-39 AV)
411. To receive the baptism of Christ, a person must:

1) Be called forward by the LORD GOD. When a person has received the calling from the LORD GOD, he has a desire to move close to Jesus Christ, to learn about him, and be with him.
2) Repent of sin
3) Baptized in water in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of the sins

412. Once a person is baptized in Jesus Christ, he is given the gift of the Holy Ghost.
1 There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. 3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. 8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. (John 3:1-8 AV)
413. Jesus Christ says “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

To be “born again: means that you must first die in the baptism of Christ, then be born again through resurrection unto God through your belief in Christ.

414. A man must be born of both water and the Spirit to enter the Kingdom of God.

To enter into the Kingdom of God, man must be baptized by water in the Baptism of Redemption in Christ’s name, and then receive the gift of Baptism of the Holy Spirit.

415. The baptism of water makes clean the flesh. The baptism of spirit makes clean the soul.
26 And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. 27 And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, 28 Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet. 29 Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot. 30 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? 31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. 32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: 33 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. 34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. 36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? 37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. 38 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, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. (Acts 8:26-39 AV)
416. To be baptized in Christ, you must

1) Be called forward to Christ by God and desire to know
2) Hear the Word of God
3 Be repentant of your sins
4) Believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that he died for your sins, and was resurrected, with all your heart
5) Confess you know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God
6) Be baptized by water (signifying your death) in the name of Jesus Christ
7) Come out of the water (signifying your resurrection) in the name of Jesus Christ
8) Receive the gift of the baptism of the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit)

The Baptism of Redemption through Jesus Christ is required to become one of his people and walk with him into the Kingdom of God. You only can die once, therefore, there is only one baptism. To be baptized more than once is unnecessary and goes against the truth of baptism. With that being said...


Desire for re-baptism

Many of our students have had concerns with their first baptism. One of the most prevalent concerns is that they received baptism without understanding what baptism really meant. They question whether that baptism meets the requirement of being born again as Jesus demands.

As their teachers, we must examine each student individually to determine their status in the Kingdom of God. Certainly, if they have received the gift of the Holy Ghost, and the Spirit is apparent, we can conclude with certainty that they have indeed been accepted into the Kingdom.

But.......if the Holy Spirit is not apparent in the student, and if the student comes to us with concerns that their first baptism was done without their knowledge of true meaning, and if they do not have the faith that they died in Christ’s baptism, then we will baptize them in Christ’s name, and give them the gift of baptism of the Holy Spirit.

We justify our decision this way. Many times people are baptized with the “baptism of repentance” rather than the “baptism of redemption”. Those people had felt terrible for sinning, and desired a closer relationship with the LORD GOD, resulting in a baptism to repent of their sins. That baptism allowed them to feel clean for a while from sin, but they did not experience the redemption through the Baptism of Christ. As a result, they are not offered the gift of the Holy Spirit, and they flounder in their faith as they try to walk between this world and the Kingdom of God, between flesh and spirit.

Just as in the days of John’s baptism of repentance, if a person has received this baptism only, he must receive the baptism of redemption through Christ to become part of the Kingdom of God. This is not re-baptism, but a first baptism in Christ. All elements of the Baptism of Christ must be performed by the believers (see #416), then followed by the receiving of the gift of the Holy Spirit.


Baptism as a child

Another concern of students is the effectiveness of their baptism as a child. If as a child you
1) Were called forward to Christ by God and desire to know
2) Heard the Word of God
3 Were repentant of your sins
4) Believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that he died for your sins, and was resurrected, with all your heart
5) Confessed that you know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God
6) Were baptized by water (signifying your death) in the name of Jesus Christ
7) Came out of the water (signifying your resurrection) in the name of Jesus Christ
8) Received the gift of the baptism of the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit)
then your baptism of a child was completed, and you are accepted into the Kingdom of God.

If not, then the ceremony that was performed to you as a baby was a Dedication Ceremony. A dedication ceremony is used to allow the parents to dedicate their baby to the LORD GOD in a congregation of people, for all to see. It is a beautiful act, and a good start to a baby’s new life, but it does not qualify as a legitimate Baptism of Christ.

Full immersion vs. sprinkling of water to effect the Baptism of Christ

Many churches are divided over the practice of baptism. Some churches demand full immersion (going completely under the water) baptisms to effect completeness. They believe full immersion baptisms, allows the sinner to fully experience his death and resurrection.

Other churches feel the act of baptism is not effected by water, but by the words spoken in faith. These churches practice baptism by sprinkling water on a person to symbolically signify the death and resurrection of a believer.

What’s the truth? Although we prefer full immersion baptisms, we have seen a few believers receive the Baptism of Christ through sprinkling, and we have witnessed them receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. If they are given the Holy Spirit, then they are baptized.

It is so important that a sprinkled baptism stress the actual process of death so that the believer has a vivid sense of death and rebirth in the process. Death and rebirth is required by Jesus, and a believer must have faith that this process has occurred. Full immersion baptism is so much more vivid and real to the process, and should be used unless circumstances prevent it.





Cite Article Source

MLA Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. and Joanne Holstein. "What is the Baptism of Jesus Christ?." The Foundation of Jesus Christ Jan 2004.   <http://www.guidedbiblestudies.com/001wbap2.htm>.

APA Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. and Joanne Holstein. (2004, January) "What is the Baptism of Jesus Christ?." The Foundation of Jesus Christ Retrieved   from http://www.guidedbiblestudies.com/001wbap2.htm

Chicago Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. and Joanne Holstein (2004) "What is the Baptism of Jesus Christ?." The Foundation of Jesus Christ (January), http://www.guidedbiblestudies.com/001wbap2.htm (accessed )


About the Authors

Kathy L. McFarland is a Becker Bible Studies Teacher and Author of Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians. She has received her Bachelor of Science degree in Religious Studies from Liberty University, and is currently seeking her Master of Divinity (Professional Ministries Track) degree from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary & Graduate School. Kathy is a noted expert on Old Testament exegesis, Christian apologetics, and Bible typology and mysteries.

Joanne B. Holstein is a Becker Bible Studies teacher and author of Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians. She has received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology/Christian Counseling with honors from Liberty University. She is well-known as a counsleor to Christian faithful who are struggling with tremendous burden in these difficult times. She is a leading authority on the history of development of the Christian churches and the practices and beliefs of world religions and cults.

Receive our Becker Bible Studies newsletter and updates


Accessiblity help and information to Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians

2004-2013 Becker Bible Studies. All Rights Reserved.