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Baptized!

  

Some people hear the gospel of the Kingdom preached to them, repent from their sins, and then attempt to live the Christian life, skipping the step of baptism.  There are many different reasons for this.

Some don’t want to.  

Some don’t believe we have to.   

Some just never get around to it and don’t really think it’s that big of deal.  It’s not exactly high on their priority list…

So, is it important?  Do we have to?  When do we get baptized?  Are we in a rush?  Should we do this immediately, or can we procrastinate and put it off?  How much should we know, understand, and believe, before we say, “I will?”

Let’s see what Scripture tells us about this subject of BAPTISM:

1)  Do we HAVE to?

Based on the Great commission, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 24:19-20.

If Jesus commands us to make new disciples and baptize them, then we need to obey that commandment.

2)  Why be baptized?  Is it important?

How major or minor is this symbolic act as a part of our Christian walk?  Pretty major!

A.) To be saved and obedient to our Lord Messiah

Jesus said in Mark 16:16 “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved, but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.”

If you “believe and are baptized, you shall be saved”.  Salvation is a pretty big deal that I certainly don’t want to mess up or play around with.  If it’s a simple thing, and I have no reason why I cannot perform this action, then why would I choose not to obey Him, especially if it could mean my salvation?

I have had this discussion many times with people, and I always bring up the thief on the cross who was promised by Jesus that he would see him in the kingdom when he comes….he certainly hadn’t had the opportunity to be baptized, yet he was obviously saved.  I’m sure there are certain circumstances and exceptions that God may make in people’s lives.  Yet, who wants to take the risk if you have some water and someone to baptize you?  What holds you back?  Is it your unbelief, or is it your unwillingness to obey God?

B.) To receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

“Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  Acts 2:38

3)  When do you get baptized?

“But when they believed Philip preaching the good news about the Kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were being baptized, men and women alike.”  Acts 8:12

I think a simple understanding and knowledge of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God [that it will be an everlasting kingdom that is to come, with Jesus as King, here upon the earth] is fundamental.  We must know and understand that Jesus is that anointed King of that coming Kingdom; that he was miraculously created in the womb of Mary by God’s Spirit  (thus Jesus was called the Son of God).  We must understand the basics of who Jesus was and is ~ that he was the one who was prophesied about in the Old Testament by the prophets as the Messiah [anointed king], to bring us the good news of the Kingdom, to die on the cross for our sins, and then be raised by God to immortality, the first man ever to receive this gift.  Jesus ascended into heaven, exalted by God, to sit at His right hand, until the time has come, when God will send His Son back to the earth, to begin to set up and establish his millennial rule and dominion over the entire earth.  If you understand these basics and believe them; then by george, you’re ready to get baptized!   It’s really not that complicated, is it?  Even a CHILD can understand these truths and believe!

I think of the story with the Ethiopian.  Philip showed up, preached Jesus to him, and then as they went along, the Ethiopian cried “Look!  Water!  What prevents me from being baptized?”  And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.”  And he [the Ethiopian] answered, “I believe that Jesus Messiah is the Son of God,” and then Philip baptized him.

What is interesting was, the Ethiopian’s reaction to finally getting to understand Scripture and getting a grasp on who this Jesus was.  As soon as he understood, something clicked, and he wanted to be baptized right that minute!  Can you imagine his excitement?  His thrill?  His desire to be baptized?  He didn’t want to wait.  He didn’t want to ponder it.  He believed, and he was baptized.  So, I think the underlying issue isn’t whether you should be baptized, or when you should be baptized, but DO YOU BELIEVE?  If so, then go get baptized.  Don’t delay.

4) By Whom Should you be baptized?

Interestingly enough, the Bible does not command your baptism to be by anyone specific.  The Great Commission was spoken to all of us, not just twelve men.  It applies to all of us.  Not just pastors.  The Bible does not require a baptism be performed by an elder of one wife, deacon, man or woman, Jew or Gentile.  It remains silent on this subject.  Of course, like any other topic, where there is freedom in Christ, MAN likes to make up his own rules and add them to Scripture.  However, if we are going by Scripture, there are no mandates on who may baptize you.  Common sense tells us, it will be by another believer, a sister or brother in Christ Jesus, who shares your belief in the Gospel of the Kingdom and Jesus Christ.

5) What does Baptism signify?
“And he came into all the district around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.”  Luke 3:3

“Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into 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.”  Romans 6:4

“having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up in Him [Jesus] through faith in the working of God, who raised Him [Jesus] from the dead.  And when you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.”  Colossians 2:12-13.

Baptism – to be immersed in a body of water, to go completely under the water – signifies death – going down to the grave and being buried; dead in our sins; dead to our old sinful, fleshly, worldly selves.

To be raised up out of the water symbolizes  us being resurrected or raised to a new life, to be a new creation in Christ Jesus.  We are thus ‘born again.’  It is a rebirth – even as adults – to become new again.  Our sins of our past life, our mistakes, our poor choices and behaviors that God would have found displeasing are wiped clean by the blood of Jesus.  We are cleansed.  Our sins forgiven.

With Baptism, comes repentance.  We acknowledge and confess our sins, turn away from our old way of life, and choose to walk in a new path.  From this day forward, we will choose to walk in the Spirit – guided by God’s Spirit [the Holy Spirit] – defined as “the mind and energy behind the works and word of God” (Greg Deuble).  This gift of the Holy Spirit will help us walk the Christian life.  To attempt to do so without God’s help, is to try by using our own power and strength.  The results will be a far cry from what God has planned for us.  With man, this is impossible, but with God, we can begin to see the transformation that He will begin to work in our lives, to begin the process and journey of conforming us into the image of His Son, Jesus.

Baptism, therefore, is one of the initial steps of your walk with Christ Jesus; since to walk with him and obey him, and walk in the Spirit, we must be baptized by the Holy Spirit, and that typically comes with our water baptism (although there is one noted case in Scripture that I know of, that it came later).

Summary

Baptism is important, we must do it, and we should not delay.  Those who oppose it or drag their feet, with some excuse of why they are not being baptized, are the ones who are resisting God.  Quit struggling and give Him ALL your heart, ALL your soul, ALL your mind, ALL your strength, and obey Him in ALL His commands.  You cannot pick and choose which commandments that you’re willing to do, and cast aside and argue about the ones you’re not comfortable with.  Yes, it might cast you out of your comfort zone…however, if you’ve followed God for very long, when isn’t He casting you out of your comfort zone?  He wants to stretch and grow you, and that means change.

The first step to true change and transformation:  when you decide to obey His Son in this command to be baptized.

 

What’s holding you back?

“The time is fulfilled and the Kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the Gospel.”  Mark 1:15

“And Peter said to them,

Repent and let each of you be baptized in the Name of Jesus Messiah for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

“For the promise is for you and your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God shall call to Himself.”

“So then, those who had received his word [of the kingdom] were baptized and there were added that day about three thousand souls.”

Acts 2:38-39, 41.

Can you begin to IMAGINE what the Church would begin to look like, the type of power that we would see God utilizing in and through us, if we repented from our sins, believed in His Gospel of the Kingdom and Jesus Christ, and were baptized in the Name of Jesus?  Perhaps, we would see 3,000 people added daily…  imagine!  Better yet…. BELIEVE!

 

 

 

239 Responses to “Baptized!”

  1. on 15 Jul 2011 at 4:54 pmXavier

    This reminds me of a story…

    A baptist minister was asked if he believed in total immersion baptism and he said, ‘Believe in it?! Why I have seen it done!’

    I have to say the same about those who question baptism.

  2. on 16 Jul 2011 at 4:00 amWolfgang

    Hi,

    The Great Commission was spoken to all of us, not just twelve men. …

    Is this what the record in Mt 28 states? So, Jesus was speaking to all of us?

    If so, Angela. have you gone to all nations preaching and teaching them? If not, why not? Is it a good idea to take one part of a statement that seems more conveniently possible (teaching and baptizing others) and take it as addressed to oneself while neglecting another part which is not quite as convenient (leaving home and going to all nations) ?

    As for me, I’d rather read the record correctly, observing in the context who was speaking to and commanding whom …

    I also observe that apparently the apostles — who were the ones whom Jesus commanded there — did NOT literally carry out what our Bibles state regarding “baptizing them in the (threffold? triple? triune?) name (singular) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” … cp. what is stated in the book of Acts where people are said to have been baptized.

  3. on 16 Jul 2011 at 8:24 amAngela

    Wolfgang,
    I do not wish to avoid directly answering your questions aimed at me, however I have a question for you first, before I address them:

    Wolfgang, have you ever been fully immersed in the waters of baptism for the forgiveness of your sins, in the name of Jesus?

    Answer my question, and then I will answer yours.

  4. on 16 Jul 2011 at 2:51 pmWolfgang

    Hi Angela,

    having repented and confessed Jesus as Messiah and my Lord, I have indeed been fully immersed in the waters of baptism and been forgiven of my sins in the name of Jesus … however, the baptism was carried out by the Lord himself and those waters of baptism was not a river, a lake, an ocean, swimmingpool or bathtub with literal H2O …

    As the Lord Jesus taught his disciples just prior to his ascension, it was John the baptist who baptized in (literal) water … and he had been ordained by God to do so in his particular ministry pointing to the one who was to come after him who would baptize – not with water, but – with spirit.

    Jesus did NOT baptize anyone in water … why would he command his disciples/followers to do what he never did?

  5. on 16 Jul 2011 at 2:57 pmWolfgang

    Angela,

    by the way, what actually was the purpose of asking your question before answering my questions?

    Now that I did answer your question, I expect your answers to the various questions I asked of you in my earlier note … and, please, do answer the questions rather than being evasive and/or using my above answer to your question as a sort of “cop out” and saying “well, since you {ta ta ta ta ta ta ….}, I see no need to answer your questions, because {ta ta ta ta ta ….. }”

  6. on 16 Jul 2011 at 8:58 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    If there is no literal water [H2O] present in the “baptism” of say, the Ethiopian eunuch, what was there?

  7. on 16 Jul 2011 at 9:10 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    PS: would you also agree with this statement?

    The records of baptism in Acts, the book which records the events of Pentecost and immediately after, do not mention water at all; thus to say that there is water involved in baptism can only be a private interpretation. (V.P. Wierwille, The Bible Tells Me So, New Knoxville, OH: The American Christian Press, 1971, p. 135).

    [bold mine]

  8. on 16 Jul 2011 at 11:39 pmRay

    John 4:2 says that Jesus baptized not, but his disciples.

    So why didn’t Jesus baptize? He was baptized himself of John.
    He commanded his disciples to baptize.

    Wasn’t it for the sake of the gospel that Jesus did everything that he did?

    I wonder what some people might say if they had been baptized by Jesus while others were baptized by one of his disciples? (as we think of how people can be)

    I suppose he wanted everyone to know that everyone’s baptism is as good as anyone else’s, and that all the baptisms were done by his approval and his authority.

    I also suppose that he may have wanted to keep a distinction between being baptized with the holy Spirit and with fire, as being something that he would do as something somewhat different than any other kind of baptism though the baptisms work hand in hand.

    Not only do we need the baptism of the holy Spirit, but we also need to be baptized into his death, being willing to die to self, and to live unto God.

    I once saw a man get baptized in a cold lake. He was told by the pastor that whatever it is he is leaving behind, to just leave it down there and to not bring it up with him.

    The man came out of the waterand to shore saying “#@%&66^^^^***!” how cold the water was.

    What good does a baptism like that do anyone unless their conscience is renewed? I hope he felt some convicition for his use of certain terms and that he began to feel the effects of his baptism, the joining of himself to the Lord in order to die to self and to begin life anew in a better way….the answer of a clean conscience.

    I wonder what a clean conscience should say?

    Blessed be God who has given me….because of Jesus, or something like that I suppose.

  9. on 17 Jul 2011 at 2:40 amWolfgang

    Xavier,

    If there is no literal water [H2O] present in the “baptism” of say, the Ethiopian eunuch, what was there?

    you should learn to read more carefully what others write …

    I wrote in my reply to Angela about my baptism and said that there was no literal H2O involved ….
    As for your question about the Ethiopian eunuch, he wanted to get into water and Philip accommodated his wish stating that there was nothing against doing so after he heard the eunuch confess his belief that Jesus was the Son of God, etc …

    Also, that record does NOT state that baptism must be a full immersion in a river or some other body of water … actually, considering how shallow rivers normally are in that particular area of Palastine where they were travelling, it is doubtful that the eunuch was fully immersed …

    Furthermore, that record does NOT state that the getting into water was mandatory and thus ordered, commanded or demanded by Philip in his teaching to the eunuch prior to the eunuch’s water baptism

  10. on 17 Jul 2011 at 2:46 amWolfgang

    Xavier,

    as for your quote from V.P. Wierwille, I would not agree that all the records about people being baptized in Acts do not mention water … seeing that the record in Acts 8 about the eunuch mentions water …

    I would say that interpreting “water” as the necessary or mandatory element for a “baptism” into all records about baptism would be an unscriptural private interpretation

    Scripture does mention (for example in Jesus’ own words shortly before his ascension) that John had been baptizing with water, and even John himself mentions that after him would come someone with a different baptism (not in water, BUT in spirit). Scripture does NOT mention that there would be another “water (Christian) baptism” after John’s water baptism ….thus, any such ideas would appear to me to also be private interpretation

  11. on 17 Jul 2011 at 3:02 amWolfgang

    Ray,

    I suppose your example shows that a “washing in WATER” will not clean a conscience or change a person’s habits and character … one can NOT “wash” away something on the inside by applying water to the outside.

    Now, it seems that folks proposing that “water baptism” has something to do with making for a “clear consicence”, etc. seem be somehow view their act of getting into water and some words spoken by another believer/pastor/minister as a sacramental or perhaps mystical action (as seen in various religions’ baptismal initiation rites, or also as in the Roman Catholic Church and other Christian denominations which view a “baptism” as the rite of initiation into their group)

  12. on 17 Jul 2011 at 7:02 amXavier

    Wolfgang

    …that record does NOT state that baptism must be a full immersion in a river or some other body of water…

    I thought that’s what the word “baptism” meant, “the processes of immersion, submersion and emergence (from bapto, ‘to dip’)” [Vine’s].

    …that record does NOT state that the getting into water was mandatory and thus ordered…

    Jesus baptized many disciples in water, authorizing his agents to perform the ceremony (John 4:1, 2). After giving orders that Christians are to baptize others until the end of the age (Matt. 28:19, 20), the Apostles commanded the public to “repent and be baptized” (Acts 2:38).

    I would say that interpreting “water” as the necessary or mandatory element for a “baptism” into all records about baptism would be an unscriptural private interpretation.

    But that’s what the word “baptism” means does it not?

    Scripture does NOT mention that there would be another “water (Christian) baptism” after John’s water baptism…

    I think a strong argument is Jesus’ own practice of baptizing people and the new birth described as one of “water AND the spirit” in John 3.

  13. on 17 Jul 2011 at 9:31 amRay

    It seems that faith makes the difference in baptism and everything else.

  14. on 17 Jul 2011 at 11:24 amXavier

    Angela

    Are you familiar with this…?

    http://inthenameofwhowhat.blogspot.com/2009/09/what-is-so-difficult-about-water.html

  15. on 17 Jul 2011 at 11:40 amDoubting Thomas

    Xavier,
    Thanks for providing us with another great link. It was very informative…

  16. on 17 Jul 2011 at 2:15 pmWolfgang

    Xavier,

    you make reference to an article by Prof. Buzzard, in which he states the following

    Everyone is familiar with the baptism of John. It has clearly been superseded by Christian baptism. Christian baptism is both by water and by spirit.
    In John 4:1, 2 we learn that “Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John (although Jesus himself was not baptizing, but his disciples were).” John 3:22 says that “Jesus and his disciples came into the land of Judea, and there Jesus was spending time with them and baptizing.” There is no doubt therefore that Jesus baptized in water (although the actual act of immersion was performed by his agents, the disciples). This initiation ceremony was baptism performed by Jesus — Christian baptism in water.

    It’s rather astonishing that Prof. Buzzard sees Christianity already in existence during the time when the OT Law age was in effect … cp. his claim that Jesus baptized in water by means of his agents doing water baptizing (and that during the early stages of his public ministry).

    The truth is that water baptism was initially put in effect by God ordaining John the baptist to proclaim and conduct water baptism and it was in effect until the time it was superseded by that baptism which John already spoke of which would be conducted by the one coming after him … and that baptism was NOT another baptism in water but baptism with spirit.

    Things are so simple … but “water baptism” seems to be another “holy cow” (similar to Trinity Godhead) which some still would like to hold on to … and the arguments Prof Buzzard puts forth in his article in favor of water baptism really miss the point in that they are based on a wrong premise (see above)

  17. on 17 Jul 2011 at 2:26 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    It’s rather astonishing that Prof. Buzzard sees Christianity already in existence during the time when the OT Law age was in effect…

    Yes, as astonishing as it may sound to some, Christianity was in existence with its founder, Jesus the Christ!

    …they are based on a wrong premise (see above).

    Well I just do not agree with the foundation of your argument which assumes that Jesus AND his apostles did not continue the practice of water baptism. They baptized people in BOTH water and the spirit.

    The Baptizer ADDS the fact that Messiah would baptize people with spirit in a way that he would not. Nowhere is it specified or implied that this practice would cease with the Baptizer. In fact, when the comparison is made when it says “Jesus was baptizing more people than John”, it suggests that they both baptized in water.

  18. on 17 Jul 2011 at 3:33 pmanthony buzzard

    The authorization of water baptism is based on the plain Apostolic example of Peter and Paul. Jesus himself had been baptized in water. The Baptizer baptized in water and of course we know about Phillip’s baptism of the eunuch in water.

    In Acts 10.47 Peter immediately commands believers to be baptized in water in view of the “spirit” they had already received.

    In Acts 10.48, on the authority of Jesus Christ, he commanded them to be baptized. This of course is baptism in water because he has just stated “surely no one can refuse THE WATER for these to be baptized”. Peter’s disciples were duly baptized in water, as is perfectly obvious. As understood by ALL commentary.

    When Peter later recounts this story of the conversion and WATER BAPTISM of Gentiles, he repeates in Acts 11.17 his own conviction that the water baptism was an ESSENTIAL PART OF THE CONVERSION PROCESS! As we saw in 10.47, he wanted NO ONE TO OBSTRUCT THE USE OF WATER FOR BAPTISM. This authorization of water baptism is SO IMPORTANT that Luke repeates it in Acts 11.17. Where Peter states that he dared not obstruct the water baptism of converts. Peter is simply underlying the danger of obstructing proper water baptism.

    Who was I that I could refuse [the same word as 10.47] by standing in God’s way?

    The idea that Peter is unsure on how to behave in a New Covenant context is without any basis at all!

    Later in Acts 19.5 disciples of John the baptist were likewise baptized in the name of Jesus. Paul then laid hands on them for the reception of the spirit.

    All of these is to say that Jesus’ command to baptize people of all nations till the end of the age remains in full force. A question of simple obedience [Heb 5.9, establishes obedience as a critical key to salvation]. It is astonishing that anyone would find this in anyway difficult.

    A difference of opinion as something as fundamental as water baptism tends to obstruct the unity which we all desire and which Jesus commands!

  19. on 18 Jul 2011 at 1:30 pmRandall D. White

    You are certainly right that Christian believers should be baptized. But what of rebaptising? Baptists in past would rebaptize Catholics, so on ,WCG would rebaptize all. Were do you stand on this? Not sure myself.

  20. on 18 Jul 2011 at 1:48 pmAntioch

    Here is a question for all – I was baptized as an infant in the Catholic church, which I dismiss as irrelevant.

    Since becoming a reborn Christian 18 months ago, I have yet to be baptized. Problem is, my church is trinitarian and use the trinitarian baptism formula, which I don’t want to do. I have not asked if they would do an Acts 2 baptism but still, it is a trinitarian church and I think I would still feel queasy even if they obliged.

    Also, I may travel to Israel in 2013 and would really love to be baptized in the Jordan. I might wait until then.

    Suggestions?

  21. on 18 Jul 2011 at 2:24 pmWolfgang

    Hi Anthony,

    A difference of opinion as something as fundamental as water baptism tends to obstruct the unity which we all desire and which Jesus commands!

    well … there seem to be oodles of water baptism doctrines around in Christian circles and each sort of use their particular “water baptism” doctrine to distinguish themselves from the other groups, thus using this very doctrine as a major hindrance for the unity to which you make reference.

    So then, which of the many water baptism doctrines is correct and should be followed and regarded as the true Christian water baptism, and which should be dismissed as faulty, incorrect, etc.? Should there be a re-baptism if someone changes church (cp Randall D. White’s comment and question above) ?

    I have found that water baptism is one of the more confused issues in Christian circles and by far not as simple as you try to make it … cp. the above comments which point out certain problems related to your water baptism doctrine …

  22. on 18 Jul 2011 at 2:30 pmWolfgang

    Hi Anthony,

    you wrote above

    A question of simple obedience [Heb 5.9, establishes obedience as a critical key to salvation]. It is astonishing that anyone would find this in anyway difficult.

    I have come to learn that what many find difficult is the matter of a church, group, or its preacher lording their particular “water baptism ritual” over them and demanding that people be baptized in their particular way … because if they don’t follow that directive, they run the chance of ending up in eternal hell fire …

    See, even you do so — even though not quite as openly, but what else are the implications of your statement regarding “obedience as a critical key to salvation” ??

  23. on 18 Jul 2011 at 3:58 pmXavier

    Antioch

    Baptism is not about whether or not you get the right “formula” read to you or where you do it. It is simply about a public act demonstrating your “obedience of faith” to God’s commandments.

    Period.

  24. on 18 Jul 2011 at 4:48 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Wolfgang,
    Thanks for your thoughts. Baptism in water, however you administer it, is without question taught by both Jesus and the Apostles. That much at least almost every commentator for 2000 years has understood. It is true that some developed a Dispensationalist or ultra-dispensationalist scheme (a disaster in my opinion!) which got rid of baptism in water for completely different reasons.

    Once water baptism is granted, then it is a question of whether it’s administered to infants or responsible adults. I think the pattern in the NT is clear here, and I highly recommend it today since there is such confusion over what needs to be believed as the Christian faith. Acts 8:12 is a simple, unifying basis. A grasp of the fundamentals – the Gospel of the Kingdom and understanding of the true God and Jesus – provided the basis of the faith. In the case of the Samarians, the correctness of water baptism was immediately confirmed by the fact that the Apostles laid their hands on these water-baptized people, thus affirming their approval of their baptism. As I wrote above, Peter speaks of himself as in danger of obstructing God if he withheld water baptism from those who had believed!

    In our circle of friends there are many who come out of evidently corrupt systems of theology and conduct who desire to be baptized once they’ve established the true bases of faith. This is always a moving and meaningful ceremony. This weekend it happens that we’re going to baptize a PhD in Theology, 59 years old, a former Baptist preacher, who after 3 years of intensive study now sees that almost everything he taught was false. His reexamination of Scripture did not lead him to think that water baptism was other than the NT public ceremony for initiation into faith.

    The great commission in Matthew lasts until the end of the age, the second coming. Baptism is part of that commission. When the apostles baptized they baptized in water with the belief that the holy spirit was also part of becoming a Christian. When Paul said he could not remember which families he baptized, he could not possibly have meant, “I don’t remember which ones I baptized in the spirit.” This simply shows what all commentary understands – that baptism, without further explanation, means baptism in water. This has been the view of our unitarian brothers and sisters from the time of the Reformation, a tradition not to be taken lightly I think. We are part of that noble stream of Anabaptists, many of whom suffered heroically for their rejection of baptism in the mainstream churches.

  25. on 18 Jul 2011 at 8:01 pmRay

    Antioch,

    I was baptized as a baby, at about three days old. In the denomiation where I went to church as a boy growing up, that’s how it was done.

    Later on, I became involved in home Bible groups with an organization that did not do bapisms. I never saw a baptism done in that organization.

    People there either felt they didn’t need to be baptized, or for one reason or another didn’t seem to ask.

    I’ve been to a few churches since then that did baptise adults in a water tank which was enough to get them all the way under.

    As I have seen many people who are Christians, I noticed that some of them seemed to be all about the Trinity.

    When Jesus told his disciples to baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the holy Spirit, I don’t think he was all about the Trinity, in the way I speak of some people being all about the Trinity.

    I don’t think it was like that with Jesus and his disciples. I don’t think they were all about the Trinity, as if that was one of the most important things to them.

    I’m assuming they didn’t even use the word Trinity, or the terms we might often hear today that would give us a clue that some are quite a bit about the Trinity.

    I used to wonder if I should be water baptized again. But I didn’t want to be baptised by someone who was all about the Trinity, though right now I don’t think I would mind at all being baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and holy Spirit.

    I’m not even sure if I would want to be baptized by someone if they were all about baptism, as if everyone must be baptized in water in order to be saved.

    Is there anybody that will simply baptize as a service to God, by Jesus Christ, and to his fellow man, just doing it simply because a person sees it in the Bible and would like it done?

    I hope so, because there’s more Jesus taught on baptism than simply doing it in the name of the Father, Son, and holy Spirit. Didn’t he teach them to serve one another, girding himself with a cloth and washing the disciples feet?

    Antioch, if you want to be baptized, I hope you find one who will baptize you the way you would like to be baptised, however, may I tell you this also?

    I have been anointed with oil in the name of Jesus Christ, and in Jesus’ name, but there was a time when there was an anointing with oil in the name of the Father, the Son, and the holy Spirit, (or Holy Spirit..can’t be so sure about captitalization when words are spoken and not seen in type) and I wanted that too, because it’s all good in the Word. I didn’t want to feel left out.

    Consider this, that every Christian should be aware that there is the Father, and that means there is the Son, and that there is the holy Spirit too. We don’t need a specific verse to know that. It’s all over in the Word.

    May God lead you into all he has for you, in Jesus.

  26. on 19 Jul 2011 at 2:01 pmWolfgang

    Anthony,

    you mention above

    When the apostles baptized they baptized in water with the belief that the holy spirit was also part of becoming a Christian.

    Since you base your beliefs regarding baptism on the practice of the apostles, you regard baptism with water as the event of “becoming a Christian”. In addition, the holy spirit is part of this baptism in water … are you witnessing the same manifestations of holy spirit with your water baptisms as we read about happening in the book of Acts? If not, what happened? Would that mean that your water baptism is not quite the same “Christian water baptism” as you claim it to be in the tradition of the apostles?

    Also, you mention a 59 old baptist preacher being baptized soon in your circle of friends … are you saying that the gentlemen was not a Christian until now? Did being baptized in water previously in the baptist church (or was he not baptized in that denomination?), not effect becoming a Christian? On the other hand, if he already was a Christian, why would you recommend a water baptism now in the circle of your friends ?

  27. on 19 Jul 2011 at 2:51 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    I’d like to see you go back and argue Anthony’s points regarding “water baptism” in post #18.

    Mainly what he wrote regarding the “underlying danger of obstructing proper water baptism”.

  28. on 19 Jul 2011 at 4:44 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Thanks, Wolfgang. Yes we do base our teachings on Jesus, who commanded baptism “till the end of the age” (which in all five occurrences in Matthew means the future Parousia. We all must do this to be saved (Heb. 5:9). Paul and the rest of the NT present water baptism as the public sign for joining the body of Christ. Today I do not expect the apostles to come from Jerusalem to lay hand on us, as in Acts 8! We do not have apostles of that rank today.
    Yes, of course the spirit comes with believing the truth of the Gospel of the Kingdom (Eph 1:13). We are sealed with the spirit, and we make our public confession with water baptism. Does this deal with your question?
    The former long-time and highly trained baptist preacher has asked us to baptize him. I did not prompt him. He realizes that it is important to be baptized into a clear view God as One, in Jesus as the Messiah and in the Gospel of the Kingdom. You can address the question to him too, later.

    The important issue is obedience and Jesus’ command to baptize in water was properly carred out by Philip, Peter and Paul. The effort of some to get rid of Peter’s calling for water is amongst the bizarrest in the history of exegesis!

    How do you get the spirit, Paul asked in Gal. 3? The answer is by hearing the Gospel, the report as he calls it there.
    “The words I spoke to you, Jesus said, “are spirit and life” Jn 6:63).

    The Devil’s major trick is to block the preaching of the KIngdom, the Gospel as Jesus preached it for us all (Mk. 1:14, 15). Paul insisted that ‘the gospel of the grace of God’ is identical with the proclamation of the Kingdom (Acts 20:24, 25)

  29. on 19 Jul 2011 at 4:59 pmAnthony Buzzard

    CORRECTION: “carried out by Philip” instead of “carred“.

  30. on 19 Jul 2011 at 6:41 pmRay

    I suppose baptism doctrines can be a bit like marketing strategies for the gospel, like the Trinity doctrine, likely not something to get all in a big huff about.

  31. on 19 Jul 2011 at 7:19 pmRon S.

    Anthony,

    In your reply to Wolfgang you said, “Yes we do base our teachings on Jesus, who commanded baptism “till the end of the age” (which in all five occurrences in Matthew means the future Parousia.

    Unfortunately, that’s where our unique unitarian Preterist friend Wolfgang disagrees with us. He believes that the end of the age came in AD 70 and that the Kingdom of God is going on right now. I’m not sure if his views on water baptism are affected by his preteristic position or not. Perhaps in future posts he will explain his stance on that.

    What say you Wolfgang? Is the reason you don’t believe in water baptism because you believe Jesus’ commission to do so expired/came to an end when he supposedly returned in AD 70??

  32. on 19 Jul 2011 at 7:44 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Ron S.

    I believe Wolfgang is an ex-Way person as well. That may have something to do with it.

    Anyone else agree with Wolfgang on water baptism?

  33. on 19 Jul 2011 at 8:05 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Ron, thanks. I have to say that preterism is to me a savage attack on the Gospel of the Kingdom. It makes the inauguration of the Kingdom worldwide, and the resurrection of the saints to immortality a complete non-event!
    When Jesus comes (visibly and publicly, as he will), the dead will rise and will be glorified, and will rule with Messiah on the renewed earth. This is the Gospel hope, and it is undermined by the “over-realized” eschatology of Preterism. It would be, I think, the greatest irony to say that the ruin of Jerusalem in AD 70 was really the return of Jesus to begin his Kingdom worldwide. Acts 3:21 is a brilliant text which can hold us all tight and safe: “Heaven has to retain Jesus until the promised restoration,” not the destructioin and ruin of Israel in AD 70!
    The problems for some go back to Dan. 9 where 9:26b has been obscured in some translations (the Hebrew is very clear). The “bad guy” in the prophecy comes to “his end” in the events described. This is quite untrue of AD 70. Jesus’ Olivet discourse, based on Daniel, knows of one GT Tribulation, and it is just before the future coming in glory.
    If one makes the GT Tribulation begin in AD 70, then one is stuck with a now 2000 year long (twice the millennium!) Gt Trib! Read Matt. 24 and we see that the GT Trib is a short burst of agony, “days in which it will be hard for pregnant women.” Do we not all know that this is not descriptive of a 2000 year period?!
    Jesus will come back “immediately” after the cosmic signs which follow the Gt Tribulation (24:29).
    Jesus phrase “end of the age” (all 5 times) is Matthew’s and Jesus’ technical term for the time when Jesus comes back. We are commanded to baptize in water until that time comes.
    I think “huffing” about obedience is not unimportant!
    If Jesus says “go and baptize and teach” ought we not to agree to do this? After all, does not Heb 5:9 say that salvation is all about obeying Jesus (so also many verses and Jn 3:36).

  34. on 20 Jul 2011 at 2:55 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    Yes, of course the spirit comes with believing the truth of the Gospel of the Kingdom (Eph 1:13). We are sealed with the spirit, and we make our public confession with water baptism. Does this deal with your question?

    No, you rather try and evade my questions … or are you really unaware of what is mentioned regarding the spirit in connection with baptism in the records in the book of Acts? do we not read about certain manifestations of the spirit being linked with baptism, such as speaking in tongues and such as prophecy which were visible evidence in the lives of those who had been baptized?

    Thus, I repost my questions from above, perhaps you can take each one and answer them this time around?

    “In addition, the holy spirit is part of this baptism in water … are you witnessing the same manifestations of holy spirit with your water baptisms as we read about happening in the book of Acts? If not, what happened? Would that mean that your water baptism is not quite the same “Christian water baptism” as you claim it to be in the tradition of the apostles?”

  35. on 20 Jul 2011 at 3:04 amWolfgang

    Ron S.,

    What say you Wolfgang? Is the reason you don’t believe in water baptism because you believe Jesus’ commission to do so expired/came to an end when he supposedly returned in AD 70??

    that would be one important reason and aspect … and I don’t think that anyone else here is proposing that water baptism should be carried out beyond the coming of the Lord, yes?

    Furthermore, it seems to me from comparing the scripture in Mt 28 and the scriptures in Acts and the spistles, that Jesus’ may not even have commanded to water baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost trinity in the first place … In addition, whom was Jesus commanding, and why do Christians take one part (to water baptize) and gladly apply that to themselves while not quite as gladly apply the first part of “go to all nations”, but rather stay “at home” and leave that to the apostles (or nowadays to certain “missionaries”)?

  36. on 20 Jul 2011 at 3:18 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    I believe Wolfgang is an ex-Way person as well. That may have something to do with it.

    when people either have no objective answers to a matter, they usually turn to a subjective defamation tactic on the person … such as you do here.

    Did you not read my reply above to Xavier and his post with a quote from V.P. Wierwille (founder of The Way Int’l)? In it I even mention that I did not agree with the statement made by him representing Way doctrine …

    The real sad part here is that you in essence and principle do the very same thing in your interpretation of the scriptures relating to the kingdom and the coming of the Lord as you accuse others of doing regarding the scriptures relating to God and Jesus when they try to prove their trinity doctrine … They ignore some rather very simple truths, like “god is one”, “the man Christ Jesus”, etc. and come up with “but, this scripture {ta ta ta ta ta }…”, you don’t seem to like some rather simply truths like “kingdom is NOT of this world”, “coming SOON”, etc. and come up with “but, this means {ta ta ta ta ta } …”

    As long as someone does not recognize that there is a dilemma with their doctrine, they will see no need to re-evaluate and change as needed …
    I know, I have taken years to realize that there was a dilemma between my previous trinity position and the Scriptures, and along the same vein, I have taken years to realize that there was a dilemma between my previous “futurist” position about the coming of the Lord and the Scriptures.

  37. on 20 Jul 2011 at 3:32 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    …. Jesus’ Olivet discourse, based on Daniel, knows of one GT Tribulation, and it is just before the future coming in glory.
    If one makes the GT Tribulation begin in AD 70, then one is stuck with a now 2000 year long (twice the millennium!)

    I wonder who makes the GT tribulation begin in AD70 ? Indeed, that would make it quite a long (twice the millennium) GT tribulation …

    Now, how is it that you recognize this as a time problem, yet you seem to have no problem at all having Jesus already “waiting at the door” for 2000 years (twice the millenniums) — cp. what was written in Jam 5:9 in the 1st century AD, “Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.” ?

    The writer of Hebrews wrote in the 1st century AD (Heb 10:37) “For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.”… and yet, you teach that he has been tarrying for 2000 years (twice the millennium) and counting, and you see no problem with such a teaching?

    I am sure you will have some more or less fancy theological seeming “solutions” for this dilemma because you will want to keep up your theology regarding an earthly kingdom, with Jesus as a political ruler of the world from a world capital Jerusalem, etc … just as trinitarian theologians come up with fancy theological interpretations of the word “one” and other stuff in order to keep up their “3 person trinity Godhead” …

  38. on 20 Jul 2011 at 3:37 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    Ron, thanks. I have to say that preterism is to me a savage attack on the Gospel of the Kingdom. It makes the inauguration of the Kingdom worldwide, and the resurrection of the saints to immortality a complete non-event!

    Which preterist view does that? Certainly not any of the few of which I am aware …

    Would it not be a far more devious and savage attack on the gospel of the kingdom if it were twisted into being about an earthly political kingdom in a yet undetermined and unknown future leaving people hoping and hoping and hoping … when in reality, it is of a different nature and people could be living in the real kingdom realities now, rather than waiting and hoping for a never coming reality??

  39. on 20 Jul 2011 at 6:59 amXavier

    Wolfgang

    I’d like to see you go back and argue Anthony’s points regarding “water baptism” in post #18.

    Mainly what he wrote regarding the “underlying danger of obstructing proper water baptism”.

  40. on 20 Jul 2011 at 7:31 amXavier

    Wolfgang

    …people could be living in the real kingdom realities now, rather than waiting and hoping for a never coming reality??

    If you think there is a “Kingdom” the likes of which the Bible describes right now, you can keep it. 🙂

    I’ll stick to the REAL Christian hope of a restoration of the whole of creation and the immortal state it will bring.

    I run to win that which Jesus Christ has already won for me. Brethren, I can’t consider myself a winner yet. This is what I do: I don’t look back, I lengthen my stride, and 14I run straight toward the goal to win the prize that God’s heavenly call offers in Christ Jesus.

    Whoever has a mature faith should think this way. And if you think differently, God will show you how to think. However, we should be guided by what we have learned so far…

    We, however, are citizens of heaven. We look forward to the lord Jesus Christ coming FROM heaven as our Savior. Through his power to bring everything under his authority, he will change our humble bodies and make them like his glorified body. Phil 3

  41. on 20 Jul 2011 at 3:42 pmWolfgang

    Xavier,

    I suppose you are referring to the following part of Anthony Buzzard’s post?

    When Peter later recounts this story of the conversion and WATER BAPTISM of Gentiles, he repeates in Acts 11.17 his own conviction that the water baptism was an ESSENTIAL PART OF THE CONVERSION PROCESS! As we saw in 10.47, he wanted NO ONE TO OBSTRUCT THE USE OF WATER FOR BAPTISM. This authorization of water baptism is SO IMPORTANT that Luke repeats it in Acts 11.17. Where Peter states that he dared not obstruct the water baptism of converts. Peter is simply underlying the danger of obstructing proper water baptism.

    Did Peter in Acts 11:17 even really repeat his own conviction that water baptism was essential part of the conversion process? What was/is that part of the conversion process which water baptism supposedly has? Were those folks in Cornelius’ house not converted yet? or only partly converted? Had they received the spirit prior to being converted, or at least while this essential part of the conversion process (water baptism) was still missing?

    Prof Buzzard claims, that Peter states (in Acts 11:17) that he dared not obstructing water baptism of the converts … but is this what Acts 11:17 records Peter stating?

    Acts 11:15-17 (KJV)
    15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.
    16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.
    17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as [he did] unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?

    What word of the Lord did Peter remember when he saw that the converts had received holy spirit when they heard and believed what he had been teaching? He remembered what we can read in Acts 11:16, which shows Peter making reference to Jesus’ words as recorded in Acts 1:5ff. Peter recalled Jesus’ words that it had been John the baptizer (!) who had baptized with water, “BUT ye shall be baptized with holy spirit” …

    Had Jesus said that “ye shall continue John’s baptism with water, and ye shall then be baptized with holy spirit”? No! Had Jesus said that “ye shall baptize with a Christian water baptism, and ye shall then be baptized with holy spirit”? No! Notice, the only 2 baptisms Jesus mentioned were “John’s baptism with water” and “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit”. Furthermore, Jesus contrasts the two (cp. the “but ye”) and does not say that John’s water baptism was to continue and the baptism with holy spirit would be something happening invisibly “in the background/on the inside”

    Now, what had Peter witnessed at Cornelius’ house? He had heard the converts speak in tongues, in other words, he had witnessed that they had experienced the “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit” part of which he then remembered Jesus having spoken.

    The 2 records in Acts 10 (narrative of the actual incident) and the one in Acts 11 (recall of the incident) obviously do not provide all details of what happened there at the house of Cornelius, but each only tell some of the story. The question to ask here is, at what time in the narrative did Peter remember those words which the Lord had spoken shortly before his ascension? Did Peter remember them prior to what is recorded in Acts 10:47,48 (Peter asking the rhetorical question “can any forbid water …” and the “and he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord”)? or did Peter remember those words of the Lord after what is recorded in Acts 10:48?

    From Acts 11:15-17 it seems to me that the point that caused Peter to remember Jesus’ words was witnessing the converts speaking in tongues, which Peter then connected to the words of the Lord about “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit”.

    But perhaps most important for correctly understanding what happened is the fact that neither in Acts 10, nor in Acts 11, it is recorded that the converts were actually baptized in water! Nowhere in these passages are we told that they were baptized in water or that Peter’s command was actually carried out. But we are told (when putting together what the records do state) that the words of the Lord about “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit” had come to pass in the lives of those converts.

    The idea that Peter is unsure on how to behave in a New Covenant context is without any basis at all!

    I would refrain from such type of claim … because as anyone can see, the 2 records provide some basis for Peter possibly being initially unsure and then remembering that the new covenant context of the Lord’s words had been “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit” and NOT “John baptized with water”.

  42. on 20 Jul 2011 at 4:50 pmAngela

    Wolfgang,
    Thank you for answering my earlier question. I apologize for my delay in replying. I have been at the COGAF Teen camp called FUEL in Indiana, USA, and just now had time to log on.

    You may have wondered at my question. I refer you to Matthew 21:23-27, when the chief priests and the elders of the Pharisees challenged Jesus’ teaching. Usually a well aimed question will get at the heart of the matter, more quickly than not (as it appears to be your style as well). You see, anyone who challenges the teaching of water baptism and wants to argue about whether it should be required, is usually because they have not and do not want to make that decision to obey Christ. My husband settles the argument very easily by saying, “If it was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me.”

    As for answering your question:”If so, Angela. have you gone to all nations preaching and teaching them?” I would answer, “Not ALL…yet” but surprisingly, a GREAT many of them, praise God! I have a personal website that shows me how many nations have logged on to read my blog and which article, and I have lost count how many. I would say, the majority, but there are a few obscure ones yet…. amazing, and almost hard to believe, but very true, I assure you. But I don’t think Jesus’ words were aimed at one person individually. We are to be one body in Christ Jesus, and perhaps, not alone can we achieve such lofty goals, but together, as one, we can. With man, this is impossible, but with God, it is possible. As Matthew 24:14 states, “This good news of the Kingdom will be proclaimed in all the world as a testimony to all nations. And then the end will come.”

    Wolfgang, my suggestion is that you quit debating it, and just do it.

    As for your 2nd question about in whose name we baptism, for the forgiveness of sins and with Acts it states Jesus, v. 3 names, appearing as if it’s an inconsistency or the disciples just chose one of the names? I’m guessing one of the great Bible scholars on this site can answer your questions, if they haven’t already in the above 46 comments… I am no Bible scholar and never have claimed to be. I am just someone who has a heart to obey the words of Jesus with all my heart. I wish you all the best, Wolfgang.

  43. on 20 Jul 2011 at 7:27 pmRay

    By reading Acts 11:16, I take it that Peter’s remembering such words was not an accident, but rather is there in Acts 11:6 as an example of how the Lord brings things to our rememberance by the holy Spirit.

    I also make a connection with the speaking in tongues for the first time, with being baptized with the holy Spirit.

    I suppose it’s like being covered in water in the sense that our clothing is different being wet than it was being dry, though water by itself can be so clear that it can seem invisible.

    I suppose our being covered by the holy Spirit is something like that.

    About the kingdom of heaven, wasn’t it in effect at the time of Isaiah’s writing? Wasn’t it expanding in his day also? (see the word “henceforth” in Isaiah 9:7 KJV)

    Now, wasn’t David’s throne in heaven? I know his throne was here upon this earth, but wasn’t it in heaven also, when he was in the Spirit of God?

  44. on 20 Jul 2011 at 7:53 pmMark C.

    For anyone interested…
    http://godskingdomfirst.org/Baptism.htm

  45. on 20 Jul 2011 at 8:46 pmXavier

    Apart from the Baptizer in the NT, how do we know baptism in water was a Jewish practice? Since [as far as I know] there is not evidence of this in the OT [apart from ritual purification via water].

    Anyone?

  46. on 20 Jul 2011 at 9:40 pmMark C.

    Xavier,

    The ritual purification you mentioned is the only baptism in water that was part of the OT Law. The baptism in water introduced by John was something new.

    From the above mentioned article:

    Hebrews 9:
    8 The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:
    9 Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience;
    10 Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings [Greek, baptismos], and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.

    While it is true the word “washings” in verse 10 is the word baptismos, it must be kept in mind that this Greek word is not used exclusively of the rite of baptism. Three of the four occurrences of the noun form are referring to washing of things; and the verb form, baptizo, while it usually refers to baptism, is also used to refer to “the washing of cups and pots” in Mark 7:4. The translators correctly render the word as “washings” rather than “baptisms” in these cases.

    The question is, then, does this verse in Hebrews 9 refer to water baptism as John preached it? The answer is no. There were, of course, ceremonial washings involved with the Old Testament Law, but they were different from the baptism that John preached in several important ways. First, they involved washing of the flesh or of objects such as cups and pots, but they did not involve total immersion. Second, they were done by a person for himself, whereas John’s baptism was something that was done by another person: A baptizer baptized the candidate for baptism. Third, these ritual washings were performed on a regular, repeated basis, for periodic cleansing and purification. John’s baptism, on the other hand, was a one-time event with a very specific purpose. It was a baptism of repentance (Mark 1:4, Luke 3:3, Acts 13:24, 19:4) which symbolized the person’s turning away from his past life of sin, and turning to God, dedicating his life to Him. Specifically, it was preached in connection with the announcement of the Kingdom of God.

    Finally, had John’s baptism been part of the Mosaic Law it would have been practiced by the Pharisees, who delighted in following the most minute details of the letter of the Law, although they missed the heart of it. Yet they rejected John and his baptism (Luke 7:29-30) and questioned his authority to baptize, because it was something new (Matthew 21:25-27; Mark 11:30-33; Luke 20:4-8; John 1:25).

  47. on 20 Jul 2011 at 10:59 pmRay

    Though I can’t prove from the scripture that baptism didn’t start until John, it seems to me that I have heard it that way. It does seem right to me also.

    It seems to me that John did so by being told to do so by the holy Spirit. It just seems to me that such would be the case with John.

    I’m sure he knew it was the will of God for him to do so.

  48. on 21 Jul 2011 at 7:16 amXavier

    Mark C.

    Thanx Mark.

    BTW why do you use the KJV? I find it so awkward and atiquated a version.

  49. on 21 Jul 2011 at 7:48 amAnthony Buzzard

    I am entirely in agreement with Angela and the whole of bibliclal commentary for 2000 years! It is really a tragic waste of time, even to have to hash over this easy subject of water baptism.
    We either obey Jesus and his command that we baptize till the end of the age, or we don’t. The biblical practice is entirely clear and there is no need for argument. Better to get on with obedience!
    The worldwide Kingdom of God begins with the 1000 year reign of Jesus and the saints, and the prophets, especially Dan. 7, predict this in clear language. The saints are being groomed now for royal office. Satan is going to be bound when Jesus returns.
    The refusal of obedience to Jesus eventually takes its toll in confusion. The hunger for plain and easy instruction on the issue of God, Kingdom, Jesus and the practice of baptism and Lord’s supper, is very great “out there.” We can bring conviction and certainty to many, and this is happening.
    What I see as a danger is an “island mentality,” originatiing in a fierce sense of independence. This is a personality thing, and is often traceable to attachment to leaders who have turned out to be wicked men. They made huge claims and thoroughly overestimated their ability to correct what had actually been well understood by the majority. An example: Jesus was raised on Sunday and crucified on Friday, but certain groups gained a following with a “wow” approach which fooled the unwary! May adventists never lose their straightforward understanding of the future one coming of Jesus to establish the Kingdom in a renewed earth.

  50. on 21 Jul 2011 at 9:17 amMark C.

    Xavier,

    I only used KJV on my website, as the site is geared to ex-followers of The Way and that’s what they used. It was mainly for the sake of familiarity. I mainly use NASB these days.

  51. on 21 Jul 2011 at 10:13 amXavier

    Mark C.

    How long were you in the Way? And what you led you to this understanding of “water baptism”? Who/Where were you baptized?

  52. on 21 Jul 2011 at 10:29 amMark C.

    I was in The Way for almost 20 years, and then another 10 years with various offshoot groups. It was in one of those offshoots (in Syracuse, NY) that I first learned about the gospel of the Kingdom, and was introduced to Anthony’s writings. The leader of that group still believed that water baptism was unnecessary, though.

    When that group started getting into an elitist mentality, and stressed separating from anyone who did not “hold the truth” (i.e., agree with the leader), I wrote him a letter saying I didn’t think that was a Biblical attitude. I was told I was no longer welcome to fellowship with them.

    As a result, I started studying on my own, and among the things I studied was baptism. (I wrote a lengthy study about it, which can be downloaded from my site, and it’s also on Anthony’s.) Finally I took action on what I had learned, and was baptized at the 2006 Theological Conference, by Dale Swartz and Dustin Smith.

  53. on 21 Jul 2011 at 10:59 amXavier

    Mark C.

    The leader of that group still believed that water baptism was unnecessary, though.

    Who?

  54. on 21 Jul 2011 at 11:08 amMark C.

    Xavier,

    Gary Gudlin.

  55. on 21 Jul 2011 at 3:35 pmWolfgang

    hi everybody,

    so now, what would you have to say if I told you I just got water baptized by being immersed in water and someone spoke some words about baptize you in the name of Jesus over me?

    Would I all of a sudden now be “a saved Christian” while before you considered me to be a rank unbeliever (since I was not water baptized and did not conform to some or many of your theological views) or perhaps a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” as some of you may even have thought but did not dare to put such in writing?

  56. on 21 Jul 2011 at 3:55 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    Would I all of a sudden now be “a saved Christian” while before you considered me to be a rank unbeliever…

    Neither. Its about something the scriptures call obedience of faith! Period.

    Lastly, whose “a saved Christian” anyway when scripture does not talk in those terms? For example, the Bible does not say, “us who have been saved.” The text says, “us who are being saved” or “those who are being saved” [sozomenois].

  57. on 21 Jul 2011 at 5:59 pmDoubting Thomas

    Xavier,
    In msg. #45 you asked, “Apart from the Baptizer in the NT, how do we know baptism in water was a Jewish practice? …Anyone?”

    The Essenes were members of an ascetic Jewish sect of the 1st century BC and the 1st century AD. Most of them lived on the western shore of the Dead Sea. From what I understand the Essenes practiced a form of baptism, as an initiation, after new recruits had completed several years of study and preparation.

    Many scholars have theorized that John the Baptist was either related to the Essenes or may actually have been an Essene. They were both ascetic Jews who practiced water baptism and lived in the dessert. Unfortunately none of their writings, which describe their exact beliefs and practices, have survived. Although it is believed by many scholars that the Dead Sea Scrolls were probably written by the Essenes or a group associated with the Essenes.

    The Essenes had deliberately separated themselves from the Pharisees and Sadducees and had no connection whatsoever to the temple and it’s rituals. From what I understand they were a relatively small group with only about 4 thousand members. But, from what I understand they did practice a form of water baptism that predates John the Baptist…

  58. on 21 Jul 2011 at 6:09 pmXavier

    DT

    Thanx.

    The simple answer is that it was a new Jewish practice, based in part on “ritual washing/immersion”, pioneered by the Baptizer in the NT.

  59. on 21 Jul 2011 at 6:38 pmMark C.

    Also from my baptism study:

    It has also been suggested that John’s baptism, and Christian water baptism after it, were somehow based on or related to the practice of proselyte baptism. When a Gentile wanted to be a convert to Judaism, in addition to being circumcised, he would undergo a baptism in water. However, there is no solid evidence that this practice was even in existence before the end of the first century. Even if it had been in practice at the time of John, there is no Scriptural basis for it. It was not based on any Old Testament law and was not ordained of God. The baptism of John, on the other hand, was ordained of God (Luke 7:30; John 1:33) as was the water baptism which Jesus authorized his disciples to perform (John 3:26-27).

    Neither the Old Testament cleansing rituals nor the practice of proselyte baptism were direct forerunners of John’s baptism. It was something new and unique, ordained of God. John announced the coming of the Kingdom of God and called on people to repent in light of that (Matthew 3:1-2). Jesus likewise proclaimed the Kingdom of God, and called for repentance (Matthew 4:17; Mark 1:15). This was the meaning and purpose of baptism in water.

  60. on 21 Jul 2011 at 6:54 pmXavier

    Mark C.

    When a Gentile wanted to be a convert to Judaism, in addition to being circumcised, he would undergo a baptism in water. However, there is no solid evidence that this practice was even in existence before the end of the first century. Even if it had been in practice at the time of John, there is no Scriptural basis for it. It was not based on any Old Testament law and was not ordained of God.

    Why keep bringing this up then? Have read it on a couple of other “Christian” sites regarding water baptism. It clearly does not advance this topic.

  61. on 22 Jul 2011 at 12:29 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    We either obey Jesus and his command that we baptize till the end of the age, or we don’t. The biblical practice is entirely clear and there is no need for argument. Better to get on with obedience!

    why do you question another’s willingness to obey Jesus and his commands when the matter is really NOT even about willingness to obey Jesus or not?

    As for me, I don’t read that Jesus commanded US that “WE BAPTIZE …. ” Furthermore, Jesus did explain to the apostles that John HAD baptized with water, and that “ye shall be baptized with holy spirit” …

    Now, from the book of Acts, we see (cp. Acts 10-11, which you brought up as an example on which you base your doctrine for required Christian water baptism) that believers were baptized with holy spirit as shown forth by the evidence of them speaking in tongues …. is such happening when you in your circle of friends baptize people in water? if not, why not? is your “Christian water baptism” no longer accompanied by baptism with holy spirit as we read in Acts?

    In reply to your comment in post 18 and interpretation on Acts 10-11 I wrote a somewhat detailed exegesis and comment on these passages upon request of Xavier, and I had expected that you as a professor for biblical studies would comment on the matter, instead you ignore my comments which question your interpretation and come up with a “let’s be obedient to Jesus” harping along the same tune as before …

    I am all in favor of obedience of faith and say “Yes, let’s obey Jesus !” … but let’s first be correct about what and whom Jesus commanded!

  62. on 22 Jul 2011 at 1:39 amMark C.

    Why keep bringing this up then? Have read it on a couple of other “Christian” sites regarding water baptism. It clearly does not advance this topic.

    I mentioned it in response to Doubting Thomas’s comment about the Essenes practicing baptism. It also establishes that the baptism of John was not based on other practices but was ordained of God.

  63. on 22 Jul 2011 at 3:52 amWolfgang

    Angela,

    You see, anyone who challenges the teaching of water baptism and wants to argue about whether it should be required, is usually because they have not and do not want to make that decision to obey Christ. My husband settles the argument very easily by saying, “If it was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me.”

    why are you unwilling to answer when asked or challenged concerning your understanding and conviction regarding a biblical topic such as water baptism?

    See my earlier reply to Anthony, who joined in on your above tune and assumptions that I am not willing to be obedient to Christ … I am very willing to obey Christ, but I am NOT willing to be obedient to what someone claims and or wants to command and purports to be a commandment of Christ.

    Yes, I am with your husband on “If it was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me”!!

    Now concerning water baptism, you (and others propounding that practice as a Christian “must”) indicated in your article that water baptism is linked to repentance, remission of sin and salvation, yes?
    So then, since your husband apparently understands Christ to have been water baptized (a water baptism related to repentance, remission of sin, etc.) … perhaps he can explain to us why Christ needed to repent or what he needed to repent of and why Jesus would have needed remission of sin or needed to be saved ?

    I would say it should be obvious to all of us that Christ needed no such water baptism at all, and thus what happened at the Jordan with Jesus and John the baptizer could NOT even have been a water baptism in the same sense as water baptism for believers is understood! Those wanting to link this event as an example for us to follow in their attempt to emphasize their demand for water baptism, ought to first understand correctly what happened there … because most certainly, Jesus did NOT receive a water baptism by John for the remission of sins !!

    What we do learn from the records about the so-called “baptism of Jesus” is that Jesus was anointed with holy spirit at that time … perhaps some knowledgeable folks here can understand what the “washing in water” then was about, considering carefully what did happen (the anointing with holy spirit)

  64. on 22 Jul 2011 at 6:47 amXavier

    Mark C.

    I mentioned it in response to Doubting Thomas’s comment about the Essenes practicing baptism.

    There is no evidence for either right? Pharisaic or Essene. In history class you are taught to back up all claims with primary or secondary evidence. Thus far I have not found either.

  65. on 22 Jul 2011 at 8:11 pmAnthony Buzzard

    On the issue of baptism, some of the conversation proceeds as though no one has worked on this for the past 2000 years of Bible reading and explanation! There is not a soul professional commentator who ever said that Peter said he made a mistake after baptizing in water! Honestly the point is frivolous. And its source is not to be taken seriously, ie Wierwille.

    That is why the clear matter of baptizing in water stands.
    It is the influence of Wierwille (hardly a good one) at work which has interfered to cause a disagreement, which ought not to be.

    There is no evidence at all that everyone spoke in tongues when baptized! Paul contradicts that flat.
    There is a solid anabaptist tradition among unitarians that baptism in water is commanded by Jesus. Not much more needs to be said. A tradition so well based need not be disturbed.

  66. on 22 Jul 2011 at 8:12 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Forgive my stupid typo! I meant not a sole……

  67. on 23 Jul 2011 at 1:44 amRay

    I think the Bible tells us that those who were baptized with the holy Spirit did speak in tongues at times, while some who were baptized with water did not receive the holy Spirit, and hence, did not at that time speak in tongues.

  68. on 23 Jul 2011 at 4:16 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    why are you not properly and directly addressing points asked of you in a post in your answer posts? one could almost get the impression that professors always answer another person’s questions with a general “preaching” instead of getting to those points about which they were asked?

    In my exegesis of Acts 10-11 in my post above, I was not making reference to any professional commentator nor to an influence of V.P. Wierwille … You, however, show yourself apparently only able to on one side go by what professional commentators over the last 2000 years have said and on the other side refute other person’s understandings which don’t agree with you by throwing them into what you deem a “sectarian guru’s pot” … Why do you deem it necessary to attack the other person in such a manner rather than addressing the topics and textual facts set forth by the other person?

    Are you unable to involve yourself in an exchange about a biblical topic on your own merits (rather than professional commentators’ merits) and address someone’s comments about a scripture passage by your own personal study of the text ?

    Your approach – especially in light of your status as professor and your reputation as a writer – is becoming more and more disappointing

  69. on 23 Jul 2011 at 9:03 amXavier

    Some badly needed context on this topic from the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels article on “Baptism”:

    Baptism is not a distinctive or uniquely Christian idea, [other] examples include the Hindu rituals in the Ganges River, the purification ritual in the Babylonian cult of Enki, and the Egyptian practices of purifying newborn children and the symbolic revivification rites performed on the dead. Baptizo and related terms were used to define ritual practices in early Cretan, Thracian religions & Eleusinian mystery religions and in several Gnostic groups and cults.

    [In Judaism] the ritual of washing was similar to baptism in its purifying implications (Mk 7.4; Heb 9.20)…It is natural to seek a prototype for John’s baptism within Judaism of the first century. But determining the relationship between Jewish practices and understandings of baptism or lustration and those of John [the Baptist] or the early church is fraught with difficulties…

    Jewish proselyte baptism served to cleans the convert from moral and cultic impurity. John’s baptism for the remission of sins reflects a similar concept.

    There is, however, no clear evidence prior to A.D. 70 that proselytes underwent baptism as a requirement of conversion. This has been argued forcefully, in spite of the continued citation of [extra-biblical texts]…There is no mention of proselyte baptism in the OT, Philo or Josephus…It is therefore doubtful that proselyte baptism existed, at least as a clearly analogous rite, in John’s time.

    It is especially significant that John’s baptism was received by Jews rather than Gentiles. John demanded moral repentance and cleansing for the Pharisees. Jewish proselyte baptism, of course, served as an initiation rite for Gentiles, but Jews, since they were already the people of God, did not need the rite. If John’s baptism was developed from Jewish proselyte practices, he transformed it significantly.

  70. on 23 Jul 2011 at 7:28 pmMark C.

    Another excerpt from Repent and Be Baptized:

    Another record that is frequently misunderstood is that of Peter in the house of Cornelius.

    Acts 10:
    42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
    43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.
    44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.
    45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.
    46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,
    47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?
    48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.

    Peter is sent, through a vision from God, to the Gentile’s house. He learns that God had told Cornelius to send for him. He began to preach to them, specifically about remission of sins through faith in the name of Jesus. While he yet spoke, the holy spirit fell upon them, and Peter and the other Jewish believers were astonished. Peter then says, “Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized which have received the holy spirit as well as we?” The Greek text literally reads, “the water,” that is, “Can anyone forbid the water…” indicating that water was well known. It is rendered this way in the NASB, and other English versions of the Bible. Whereas in Samaria they had been baptized in water but did not receive the spirit, here we have just the opposite. They received the holy spirit, but had not yet been baptized in water. Peter then says, “Can any man forbid the (well known or expected) water…?” He then commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. We know from both the previously established pattern, and the immediate context, that Peter is commanding water baptism.

    The explanation has been that Peter got “carried away with the moment” and forgot that he shouldn’t be promoting water baptism. We supposedly know this because in the next chapter Peter is relating what had happened and says, “Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John truly baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the holy ghost.” Chapter 10 didn’t record Peter’s “coming to his senses,” and nothing in that record indicates that his command was not carried out. But according to this explanation, it’s implied in his account of what happened in the next chapter. “Then remembered I…” is taken to mean, “I commanded water baptism, but then I remembered that it would be wrong.” However, this would be reading much into the record, and would not fit with the ordinary flow of language, or with the context of the chapter.

    Acts 11:
    1 And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.
    2 And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him,
    3 Saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.
    4 But Peter rehearsed the matter from the beginning, and expounded it by order unto them, saying,
    5 I was in the city of Joppa praying: and in a trance I saw a vision, A certain vessel descend, as it had been a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came even to me:
    6 Upon the which when I had fastened mine eyes, I considered, and saw fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.
    7 And I heard a voice saying unto me, Arise, Peter; slay and eat.
    8 But I said, Not so, Lord: for nothing common or unclean hath at any time entered into my mouth.
    9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
    10 And this was done three times: and all were drawn up again into heaven.
    11 And, behold, immediately there were three men already come unto the house where I was, sent from Caesarea unto me.
    12 And the Spirit bade me go with them, nothing doubting. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered into the man’s house:
    13 And he shewed us how he had seen an angel in his house, which stood and said unto him, Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon, whose surname is Peter;
    14 Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.
    15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.
    16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.
    17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?
    18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

    The overall subject of chapters 10 and 11 is that the Gentiles were for the first time becoming a part of the Church. Had Peter not seen the holy spirit manifested as he did, he would never have thought that the Gentiles should be allowed to partake of the baptism that he and the other Jewish believers had partaken in. This fits with the pattern we have seen, that baptism in the name of Jesus was accompanied by receiving the holy spirit. The outward symbolic action of baptism with water was only to be administered to those who had heard and believed the Gospel and were committing their lives to Christ. (Philip to the eunuch: “If you believe with all your heart, you may”) The Gentiles believed, but Peter would not have guessed that they would share the same experience had he not seen the manifestations of holy spirit.

    When he saw this sign of God’s acceptance of the Gentiles, it was “then” that he remembered the word of the Lord. Jesus had said they, the Jewish disciples, would be baptized in the holy spirit. Peter and those with him were astonished to see that these Gentiles received the same holy spirit which Jesus had said they would be baptized with. So Peter said, “Can any man forbid the water that these should not be baptized?” The reason he commanded water baptism was, as he said in verse 17, “Forasmuch then as God gave to them the like gift as he did to us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, what was I that I could withstand God?” Is this saying that he would be withstanding God by carrying out the command to be baptized in water, as has been suggested? To interpret it that way would be missing the whole point of the passage. To withstand God in this case would have been to forbid the Gentiles from being baptized and becoming Christians. This is the overall theme of chapters 10 and 11—that God was teaching the Jewish believers that He was including the Gentiles in His plan. That there was some conflict between forms of baptism in the first century Church is simply not the issue.

    Wolfgang, I exhort you to read the whole study, as it demonstrates exactly how the words baptism and baptize are used in the Bible, and what is actually meant.

  71. on 23 Jul 2011 at 10:47 pmDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    The apostle Peter says in 1 Peter 21-22;

    “Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, (22) who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.”

    I think it is clear that Peter is talking about water baptism here. He says, “not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience.” I really don’t understand why anyone would not want to be baptized if they have the opportunity to be baptized. There are many Christians in different places around the world, where Christians are persecuted, that don’t have the opportunity and would love to have the opportunity to get baptized…

  72. on 23 Jul 2011 at 11:59 pmRay

    Now that I read a reading of I Peter 3:21-22 which is different than I am used to, I begin to wonder if Peter was referring to the baptism of the holy Spirit rather than a baptism of water.

    Isn’t it the holy Spirit’s baptism that gives us both an answer of a good conscience toward God, by the resurrection of the dead (for as long as we were in the flesh we were dead in tresspasses and sins, but now we live in the Spirit through the resurrection of Christ, seeing how we rose with him into newness of life by the Spirit of God) and also as an appeal to God for a good conscience, as the holy Spirit makes intercession for us according to the will of God?

  73. on 24 Jul 2011 at 12:11 amRay

    Mark, I believe what you are saying in #70 is correct. It also seems to me (as well as you also) that as Peter began to speak the gospel of Christ, his death and his resurrection, and saw the gift of the holy Spirit given unto the Gentiles as he and the others also received on that day of Pentecost, he remembered how the Lord had said that they would be baptized with the Holy Ghost. (Acts 11:16)

    The natural result of all this, was that water baptism should be made available to the Gentiles also, and I assume that they did receive baptism in water, something Peter must have often done as he was with Jesus while the disciples were baptizing even at the same time that John was baptizing.

  74. on 24 Jul 2011 at 7:40 amWolfgang

    DT,

    I really don’t understand why anyone would not want to be baptized if they have the opportunity to be baptized. There are many Christians in different places around the world, where Christians are persecuted, that don’t have the opportunity and would love to have the opportunity to get baptized…

    why should a Christian want to be baptized if it is a not needed ritual in order to become a Christian? your comment sounds as if it was some “extra” event if one has an opportunity but certainly not needed in order to become a Christian? usually, as you can see from above comments, water baptism is regarded as something mandatory and needed in order to become a Christian, a (sacramental?) ritual needed in order to receive or become eligible for salvation …

  75. on 24 Jul 2011 at 7:48 amXavier

    Wolfgang

    If you agree with the dictum, ‘if its good enough for Jesus’ why don’t you just do it?

    This is really getting tedious now. Just like your preterism.

  76. on 24 Jul 2011 at 7:55 amWolfgang

    Mark C.,

    from the study you quoted:

    The overall subject of chapters 10 and 11 is that the Gentiles were for the first time becoming a part of the Church. Had Peter not seen the holy spirit manifested as he did, he would never have thought that the Gentiles should be allowed to partake of the baptism that he and the other Jewish believers had partaken in.

    could you perhaps point me to the section in the scriptures where we read about Peter and the other apostles partaking in Christian water baptism ?

    Peter states what he thought and what he remembered when he saw holy spirit manifested at the house of Cornelius … and yes, he did thereby see that Gentiles were in fact partaking of the same baptism in which he and the other apostles had partaken in, albeit that baptism was NOT a water baptism but baptism with holy spirit … exactly as the Lord Jesus had said!

    I read about some of the apostles having initially been followers of John the baptist and thus most likely had been baptized with the baptism of John. But is that the same as or identical to what folks here mean with “Christian” water baptism (water baptism ritual by which one becomes a Christian)? Over the years I have heard many folks from different Christian circles being rather adamant about making a clear distinction between two different water baptisms (the baptism of John & Christian water baptism) …

    You then write:

    Wolfgang, I exhort you to read the whole study, as it demonstrates exactly how the words baptism and baptize are used in the Bible, and what is actually meant.

    Be assured that I have read all places where the words baptism, baptized, etc. are used in the NT scriptures and have evaluated from the various contexts how they are used in the Bible and what is actually meant!

    Now, it seems that I have read passages in the Scriptures where “baptized” and “baptism” rather clearly are NOT meant to be an “immersion in water” where you and others read the same words and “read” water, just because you see the word “baptized”.

  77. on 24 Jul 2011 at 7:58 amWolfgang

    Xavier,

    If you agree with the dictum, ‘if its good enough for Jesus’ why don’t you just do it?

    because Jesus did NOT do it … or are telling us that Jesus needed to be baptized in water in order to receive remission of sins or become a Christian?

  78. on 24 Jul 2011 at 11:56 amAngela

    http://www.cogcast.org/uploads/2/9/5/9/2959190/isbaptismnecessary.mp3 ~ a radio broadcast teaching by Z.B. Duncan.

  79. on 24 Jul 2011 at 12:32 pmDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    You asked, “Why should a Christian want to be baptized if it is a not needed ritual in order to become a Christian?”

    I don’t believe that it is a needed ritual in order to obtain salvation. But, I am one of the few Christians that believes that non-Christians (Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, etc…) can attain salvation if God’s law is written on their hearts and they lead a life that is pleasing to God. Of course I know that the vast majority of Christians would disagree with me on this.

    I believe baptism is an outward symbol that reflects the fact that we have repented and changed our ways. It demonstrates that we are no longer living our lives in the same sinful ways as we have in the past. It symbolizes that our sins and our old ways have been washed away and that we are now living our lives to the glory and honor of God. Our one and only “true” Father and creator.

    I don’t believe that God will condemn you just because you are not baptized. But like I said, “I really don’t understand why anyone would not want to be baptized if they have the opportunity to be baptized.” It’s like, why wouldn’t someone want to be member of a larger body of Christians if they had the opportunity to join such a body of like minded Christians???

    There is no Biblical Unitarian church anywhere near where I live. I do attend church occasionally, especially at Christmas and Easter, but I don’t belong to any church precisely because there isn’t a body of like minded Christians in the area where I live. I usually go to church with my best friend who is a non-conformist Roman Catholic, but when they start asking for dead people to pray for them (like Athanasius, etc…) I get very frustrated and don’t feel like I belong.

    I don’t feel like I am with a larger body of like minded Christians. That’s why I consider K.R. to be my virtual church. I feel like this is indeed a larger body of like minded Christians that I can learn from, and share my thoughts with. I do realize that some of my beliefs are unorthodox, but no-one on this site ever condemns me or insults me. They will simply point out why they don’t agree with me on this or that point, or whatever.

    I don’t understand why when Xavier asked you, “‘if its good enough for Jesus why don’t you just do it?” That you responded with, “because Jesus did NOT do it …” It seems to me that you are just being argumentative. Clearly Y’shua needed to be baptized before he could begin his ministry. Look at what Y’shua said in Matthew 3:13-15;

    “Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. (14) John would have prevented him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?’ (15) But Jesus answered him, ‘Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he consented.” (ESV).

    It is fitting for us “all” to try to fulfill all righteousness. Of course I am just a layman, and not a teacher, but this is just how I see it from my humble perspective…

  80. on 24 Jul 2011 at 1:35 pmRay

    I wonder if Christians ever ask, “Why should I want to speak in tongues if it’s not a needed ritual in order to become a Christian?”

    Looking at the order of events in Acts 2 concerning the Church, we can see that they questioned, they mocked, (Acts 2:12,13) they heard the gospel, they repented, they were baptized, they received the holy Spirit, they were added to the Church, they continued in the Word, and in prayer, they believed together, they shared together, had joy together, and praised God together.

    That seems to be the natural order of things.

  81. on 24 Jul 2011 at 2:07 pmMark C.

    could you perhaps point me to the section in the scriptures where we read about Peter and the other apostles partaking in Christian water baptism ?

    Peter commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus, and nothing in those chapters says that it was not carried out.

    BTW, it is correct that there are two baptisms in water mentioned in the Bible. There is a definite distinction made between John’s baptism and baptism in the name of Jesus, which if you examine the records is a baptism in water. Baptism in the holy spirit is a third baptism mentioned in the NT, one which only Jesus is said to do, and is only one of several different ways of referring to receiving the holy spirit.

    Be assured that I have read all places where the words baptism, baptized, etc. are used in the NT scriptures and have evaluated from the various contexts how they are used in the Bible and what is actually meant!

    Now, it seems that I have read passages in the Scriptures where “baptized” and “baptism” rather clearly are NOT meant to be an “immersion in water” where you and others read the same words and “read” water, just because you see the word “baptized”.

    Once again you demonstrate an unwillingness to even examine the point of view you adamantly argue against. It is therefore (once again) a waste of time to try to discuss this with you.

  82. on 24 Jul 2011 at 3:24 pmWolfgang

    Mark C.,

    I had asked you in an earlier post

    could you perhaps point me to the section in the scriptures where we read about Peter and the other apostles partaking in Christian water baptism ?

    You answered my question with the following

    Peter commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus, and nothing in those chapters says that it was not carried out.

    Did you not understand my question? I had asked you to point out a scripture where we can read that Peter and the apostles were water baptized with the Christian water baptism …
    Your “answer” above does not even address my question … but since you made the above statement, were you trying to say that in Acts 2 Peter also commanded the apostles to be baptized in the name of Jesus? You should notice that Peter was not addressing the apostles when he made the statement to which you refer there !!

  83. on 24 Jul 2011 at 3:35 pmWolfgang

    DT.,

    you wrote above

    I don’t understand why when Xavier asked you, “‘if its good enough for Jesus why don’t you just do it?” That you responded with, “because Jesus did NOT do it …” It seems to me that you are just being argumentative. Clearly Y’shua needed to be baptized before he could begin his ministry.

    Perhaps it will help you understand why I wrote what I wrote when I reiterate that Jesus did NOT receive John’s baptism of repentance … I would think that all here will agree to that, or is there someone who believes that Jesus was in need of repenting of some sins and therefore came to John to be baptized in water to receive remission of sin?

    Yes, Jesus required what is translated in just about all Bibles with “baptism”, causing many Christians to have a incorrect understanding of what took place there, because they often use this “baptism” in their explanations about “water baptism” and explain it as being an example which Jesus was giving for us to follow,etc … Yet, the truth is that what John and Jesus did there had NOTHING to do with John’s baptism of repentance nor with a so-called “Christian water baptism for remission of sin”, for the very simple reason that Jesus did NOT need any such baptism in the first place since he had not sinned!!! Obviously then, this “washing” that took place in Jordan fulfilled some other requirement in order for Jesus to begin HIS MINISTRY (exactly as you mention above!) … which is not the reason or purpose for the water baptism ritual for all believers, is it?

    Thus, I am not trying to be just argumentative … I am trying to get people to read more carefully what the text states and to more accurately take the context into account, etc …

  84. on 24 Jul 2011 at 3:46 pmMark C.

    Wolfgang,

    Oops! You’re right, I misread your question. We had been talking about Acts 10 and 11 and Peter’s observation of them receiving holy spirit and his command for them to be baptized in water. My post had presented the overall context of chapters 10 and 11, so when you quoted part of my post and mentioned Peter and the apostles and water baptism I thought you were referring to the fact that there is no specific mention of them carrying out the command in the following chapter.

    To address your question of when the apostles were baptized in water, the Bible doesn’t say specifically. They may have been baptized by John, or by other disciples of Jesus. Anything more specific would be conjecture. However, there is no guesswork involved when we read of Jesus’ command to the apostles, and of the apostles carrying out his command. Nor is there any guesswork involved with the standard practice seen throughout the book of Acts as well as Paul’s epistles.

  85. on 24 Jul 2011 at 4:26 pmXavier

    Wolfgang

    because Jesus did NOT do it … or are telling us that Jesus needed to be baptized in water in order to receive remission of sins or become a Christian?

    See what I mean? TEDIOUS!!

  86. on 24 Jul 2011 at 7:47 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Wolfgang

    In my exegesis of Acts 10-11 in my post above, I was not making reference to any professional commentator nor to an influence of V.P. Wierwille…

    Can you please produce me one quotation from one commentary, at some time, affirming that Peter thought that he had made a mistake by baptizing those Gentile converts in water.

    If there are none [except Wierwille] I think that no further argument is neccesary.

  87. on 24 Jul 2011 at 11:05 pmRay

    I’m supposing that John’s baptism covered the disciples of Jesus who went about baptizing the people who came to Christ as he preached the kingdom of heaven. (John 4:1,2)

    I wonder if there were those who had been baptized by John who also were baptized in water by the disciples of Jesus, or if John’s baptism was the same thing the disciples of Jesus were doing and therefore it was considered to be the same thing.

    I’m supposing if it were considered to be the same baptism, one of repentance, one baptism in water would have been enough.

  88. on 25 Jul 2011 at 12:47 amRay

    I have trouble understanding someone who….say, was baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and holy Spirit, (or Holy Spirit if one prefers) and then later in life decided it to be important to be baptized again in the name of Jesus, or in Jesus’ name, or in the name of Jesus Christ.

    I wonder why the need for another baptism, unless such a one was at first baptized into a particular doctrine, religious discipline, or theological persuasion, rather than into Christ, or felt that he had been baptized into a particular doctrine, religious discipline, or theological persuasion, rather than into Christ himself.

    I consider that every Christian should know that there is such a thing as the Father God who has a Son named Jesus whom we have read of in the gospels of our Bibles, and that we all are aware that there is such a thing as the holy Spirit, or Holy Spirit, if you prefer.

    I suppose one being baptized might feel that he was baptized into something he later did not wish to be a part of, such as a particular sect, denomination, cult, or whatever, rather than feeling that he had been baptized into Christ.

    Is it that sometimes people feel that they have been used by others for religious purposes, or agendas of others, that are not necessarily the purposes of God?

    Maybe I shouldn’t think such a thing to be so strange because I had been anointed with oil on the forehead in the name of Jesus Christ, and in Jesus’ name, and when I saw an anointing of oil in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I got in line because I wanted that also…..except in my case, there was something in additon to Christ’s name alone, and I wanted it all.

    Or, is my case no different than the situation of baptism I spoke of here in this post?

    There was a time when I thought that if I wanted a baptism in the name of Jesus Christ, that a pastor ought to do so for me, simply using the name of Christ, without the words, the Father and the Holy Spirit, since it would be my baptism and I believed I had seen from the Bible, from the book of Acts, that people seemed to have been baptized in that particular manner, and I didn’t see anything wrong with asking for a baptism in that manner, seeing how it looked to me like that’s the way it was likely done back in the time spoken of in the book of Acts, and I even considered asking a pastor to do a baptism in that manner for me.

    Now, I feel no need to ask for such a thing, though if I were to be baptized in water again, (for I was baptized as a baby) I would likely want the words “In the name of the Father, Son, and holy Spirit” (or Holy Spirit if one prefers, or Holy Ghost even, as it says in the KJV), because of what Jesus said in Matthew 28:19, but I think that if I wanted it done, that I should want it to be done by someone who was serious about the things of God, and serving Christ, as a servant of God should do.

  89. on 25 Jul 2011 at 4:20 amJoseph

    Mark C.

    Neither the Old Testament cleansing rituals nor the practice of proselyte baptism were direct forerunners of John’s baptism. It was something new and unique, ordained of God. John announced the coming of the Kingdom of God and called on people to repent in light of that (Matthew 3:1-2). Jesus likewise proclaimed the Kingdom of God, and called for repentance (Matthew 4:17; Mark 1:15). This was the meaning and purpose of baptism in water.

    And your point is? To distance the “Christian” baptism from the Jewish process of immersion by water?

    I think that it is obvious that baptism was a practice which came from the Hebrew tevilah of the day. The definition of tevilah: full body immersion in a mikvah, is the biblical act of immersing oneself in a natural water source, ritual washing in water. The processes are too similar to say otherwise for certain.

    It was the spiritual application that changed, in which I would agree with you. Of course with a Messiah ushered onto the scene, a rather HUGE ordeal, the application of baptism can now also be done as a sign of faith for those that are the body of Messiah.

  90. on 25 Jul 2011 at 6:38 amMark C.

    And your point is? To distance the “Christian” baptism from the Jewish process of immersion by water?

    Not so much to distance it but to demonstrate that John’s baptism was something new and different, not derived from the Mosaic Law. Often those who deny baptism claim that water baptism was done away with, along with other elements of the Old Covenant.

    I think that it is obvious that baptism was a practice which came from the Hebrew tevilah of the day.

    Please reread comment #46.

  91. on 25 Jul 2011 at 7:22 amDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    I apologize for saying that I thought you were just being argumentative. You are quite correct that Y’shua didn’t need to repent of his sin and his sinful nature before his baptism. There must have been a different reason why God required Y’shua to undergo John’s water baptism. This would seem to imply that there might be additional reasons to get baptized other then the ones I mentioned above in Msg. #79. This will require some thought and prayer on my part.

    You are correct that it is rather odd that there is no mention of the Apostles themselves being baptized in water. This will also require some thought and prayer on my part. Thank-you for sharing your thoughts with us and God Bless…

  92. on 25 Jul 2011 at 9:00 amWolfgang

    Hi,

    a test to perhaps find the reason why – for some strange reason – I am not able to post here again … similar technical problem as a few days ago … getting a “500 internal server error” message …

  93. on 25 Jul 2011 at 9:33 amWolfgang

    I’ve tried to post a reply to one of Anthony’s posts, but strangely am unable to post it … the server of the blog reports a “500 internal server error” each time I am trying to post. Have forwarded the message to Sean Finnegan, hopefully he as a moderator can post it for me and also figure out why that post is causing the server to break down.

  94. on 25 Jul 2011 at 5:03 pmDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    Sean did an upgrade to a newer version of Word Press around the end of June and since then Joseph and I have also had problems trying to post longer posts on to the K.R. site. We received the same internal server error message that you got. Sean tried some updates but it didn’t seem to work. I find I can’t paste my messages from another forum (like my hotmail account).

    I find if you type your message directly on to K.R. it seems to work as long as your message isn’t too long. I once typed a very long message directly on to K.R. and I got the same “internal server error”. I don’t know very much about computers, but I think it might be a problem with the Word Press software. I used to copy and paste messages all the time, but that was before the software update. Hopefully the problem will get fixed with the next software update…

  95. on 25 Jul 2011 at 5:16 pmJoseph

    I believe this may have to do with the posting problem… http://wordpress.org/news/2011/07/wordpress-3-2-1/

    There is a new WordPress update out since the 12th of this month. It came out shortly after v3.2.0 because some were experiencing server issues.

  96. on 25 Jul 2011 at 7:43 pmJoseph

    Mark C, you said in comment #46…

    There were, of course, ceremonial washings involved with the Old Testament Law, but they were different from the baptism that John preached in several important ways. First, they involved washing of the flesh or of objects such as cups and pots, but they did not involve total immersion.

    Take for example…

    2Ki 5:14 Then went he down , and dipped (Heb. teval, Greek. bapti,zw) himself seven times in Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God: and his flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child, and he was clean.

    Harris, el als, 787.0 טבל (taval) I, dip, plunge. (ASV and RSV similar.)
    The verb conveys the immersion of one item into another: bread in vinegar, feet in water, a coat in blood. baptœ is the common LXX rendering of this root.

    Liddel-Scott Lexicon, 7655 bapti,zw
    bapti,zw, f. Att. iw/, to dip in or under water; metaph., bebaptisme,noi soaked in wine, Plat.; ovflh,masi beb. over head and ears in debt, Plut.
    2. to baptize, tina, N.T.:-Pass., bapti,zesqai eivj meta,noian( eivj a;fesin a`martiw/n Ib.:-Med. to get oneself baptized, Ib. Hence ba,ptisma

    Second, they were done by a person for himself, whereas John’s baptism was something that was done by another person:

    As shown by the notes above of the Hebrew word טבל, the verb can convey a immersion of one item into another (man dipping man another man into water), which also supports that this process may have not been so foreign prior to John the Baptist. I argue that the application/purpose changed with the coming of Messiah into the World as ushered in my John the Baptist.

    BTW, anyone know how to have Greek to be able to copy and past in this blog? Am I missing fonts?

  97. on 25 Jul 2011 at 10:15 pmDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    I’ve been thinking and praying about what we were talking about. The first thing that comes to mind is that the bible is not a history book. It doesn’t tell us many things, like the details of how the early Christian church spread to Egypt and other parts of the world. It really isn’t that surprising that it doesn’t tell us the details about how or when Peter and the apostles were baptized.

    So even though the baptism of the apostles was not described we do not that that Peter and the apostles prescribed baptism to others. I think it is just common sense that they wouldn’t prescribe baptism to others if they hadn’t undergone a similar baptism themselves. Just because the bible doesn’t specifically describe it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

    As for your other question, why would God have wanted Y’shua to undergo John’s baptism, since like you pointed out Y’shua was without sin, and therefore had nothing to repent of. Robert thinks that because of the corruption in the temple, that making a temple sacrifice could no longer be adequate as a sin offering, and a new way of repenting (being forgiven for our sins) was now necessary.

    Therefore Y’shua was just establishing a new prescribed method that would ultimately replace the temple sin offering and make that sin offering null and void for future generations of Christians. This does seem to make a lot of sense to me. It has been interesting listening to your ideas though. Your questions have definitely made me do a lot of thinking, which I think is a good thing.

    I hope you have a great night and God Bless…

  98. on 25 Jul 2011 at 11:42 pmMark C.

    As shown by the notes above of the Hebrew word טבל, the verb can convey a immersion of one item into another (man dipping man another man into water), which also supports that this process may have not been so foreign prior to John the Baptist. I argue that the application/purpose changed with the coming of Messiah into the World as ushered in my John the Baptist.

    Yes, the word can mean that, just as baptizo in Greek can have either meaning. But my point was that the ceremonial washings in the OT Law were about washing parts or objects, not immersing oneself. The example in II Kings 5:14 was not baptism or ritual prescribed by the Law.

    The third difference is possibly the biggest: they were rituals that were repeated periodically, whereas John’s baptism was a one time event that marked a change in one’s life. And as I mentioned, the Pharisees recognized it as something new and different, and not part of the Law; otherwise they would have been observing it.

  99. on 26 Jul 2011 at 8:01 amXavier

    Furthermore, John baptized Jews only. In difference to Jewish proselyte baptism.

  100. on 27 Jul 2011 at 1:40 amWolfgang

    DT,

    I think it is just common sense that they wouldn’t prescribe baptism to others if they hadn’t undergone a similar baptism themselves. Just because the bible doesn’t specifically describe it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

    which “similar or same” baptism was it which Peter had undergone and which he saw at Cornelius’ house and which caused him to remember which words of the lord Jesus? was it the water baptism of John, which he most likely had undergone as a disciple of John before he even had met Jesus for the first time? was it the baptism with holy spirit which Jesus had spoken of in those words which Peter remembered?

    While there are most definitely many things that did happen which are not recorded in the Scriptures, I would say that those of importance to man in order to live righteously before God are recorded.

    IF a “Christian” water baptism (which is regarded as something different from John’s water baptism !! … as someone else explained above as well) was so important and an important part in becoming a member of the body of Christ, a true follower of Christ, etc. … I would certainly deem it appropriate that the scriptures would record it about the apostles, who were the first ones to receive baptism with the holy spirit at the day of Pentecost. IF – as Anthony claimed above – “Christian” water baptism involves being immersed in water and the receiving of holy spirit, when and where were the apostles water baptized at Pentecost either prior to, or at the same time as, or even after they were baptized by the Lord himself with holy spirit?

  101. on 27 Jul 2011 at 1:51 amWolfgang

    Hi,

    as for “to baptize” meaning “immersing fully in water”, it seems that some posts above already indicate that “to baptize” does NOT necessarily have to mean “fully immersed” in water … but rather could also have the more general sense of what we today would perhaps translate as “to wash in”, which would then in the case of a water baptism be a rite or ritual “washing”, rather than for the purpose of a literal “washing in order to clean”.

    As I mentioned before somewhere, in the record about the eunuch who was water baptized by Philip, even in those days many of those rivers in that area were not even deep enough to “fully immerse” a person in water. Even in the records about John “washing” Jesus in Jordan as part of the requirements prescribed in the OT Law in connection with initiation and consecration for the office of “high priest”, it is more likely that Jesus was not “dunked completely under water” (“fully immersed in water”), but rather that they perhaps stepped a short distance away from the shore into the river and John then used the water from the river to perform the “ritual washing” required by the Law and thus they fulfilled all righteousness in connection with what was needed for Jesus to begin his public ministry.

    As I have mentioned previously as well, this event was definitely NOT what is called in Scripture “the baptism of John” which John administered to those seeking remession of sin.

  102. on 27 Jul 2011 at 1:52 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    you write above

    Can you please produce me one quotation from one commentary, at some time, affirming that Peter thought that he had made a mistake by baptizing those Gentile converts in water.

    If there are none [except Wierwille] I think that no further argument is neccesary.

    does the number of commentaries agreeing on a particular understanding now establish what the true understanding of a passage is? If that be the case, trinity adherents would be correct with their “3 person Godhead” view since there are definitely more commentaries out there which agree on a trinity perspective of certain verses and passages …

    As for Wierwille, as far as I remember from reading in his books, he was not of the opinion that Peter baptized those Gentiles in water … thus, how could Wierwille then — as you put it — have commented “that Peter thought he made a mistake by baptizing those Gentile converts in water” ?

    Once again, you seem to rather quickly be ready to condemn someone else with whom you do not agree and you do not even have the facts concerning their beliefs correct (see above) … I say once again, because I remember the same from an incident some time ago when you harped on a certain belief of the Christadelphian and where you also apparently did not understand their position correctly either

    Instead of relying on commentaries, why don’t you examine what I wrote in an earlier post about my textual considerations and my subsequent understanding of the passages in Acts 10-11 since I challenged the claims you made concerning Acts 10-11 ?

  103. on 27 Jul 2011 at 4:58 amMark C.

    Wolfgang,

    For the record, the points you raised in your explanation of Acts 10-11 are addressed in the study I linked to, which you declined to read. In light of this, I find the above comments to Anthony highly ironic.

  104. on 27 Jul 2011 at 5:33 amWolfgang

    Mark C.,

    were the points in the study of Anthony to which a link had been posted what I challenged and supported with a more detailed textual / contextual study? In my post I showed that the points made in his article were NOT in harmony with what the text and context in Acts 10-11 actually states …

    Thus far, Anthony has replied only with the type of comment that relies on commentaries and attacks me as a person (his references and implications to me as a former Way / Wierwille adherent).

    You making reference that he already addressed the points in my explanation is incorrect in that it does not take into account the above, that my points were questioning his understanding, and in his replies to my explanation he did NOT address what I had raised!

  105. on 27 Jul 2011 at 5:54 amMark C.

    Wolfgang,

    I did not post a link to Anthony’s study. It was a link to my own (in comments 44 & 70). Here is the link again:
    http://godskingdomfirst.org/Baptism.htm

    It deals with the points you make about Acts 10-11, and many others. However, you have already stated (or at least strongly implied) that you have no interest in reading what I presented (comment #76).

    Also, for the record, Anthony’s comments were not attacking you as a person, but merely pointing out that no one in the history of Christendom has ever suggested that Peter was wrong to command baptism in water in Acts 10, outside of followers of The Way/V. P. Wierwille and its various offshoots. This is why such a statement has not been taken seriously outside those circles.

    But that doesn’t make it right or wrong. If you genuinely want to exchange ideas on this, then read my study and discuss it. But if you just want to declare your belief and not engage in debate, then you’re wasting your time.

  106. on 27 Jul 2011 at 11:09 pmRay

    I suppose there are many interpretations of what baptism means though I haven’t looked it up in my dictionary.

    I think we all have some general sense in what it means if it’s in water.

    I heard it means to dunk, or to be dunked in water.

    I think of a doughnut, how it tastes differently after it’s been dunked in coffee.

    But coffee doesn’t cleanse a doughnut does it? It doesn’t give a new answer by a clear conscience to God does it?

    I think a baptism if mixed with faith should cause a change in a person, that is, if God is with them in it. If it’s for his purposes and he’s there being involved in some way, there should be a change in the soul somehow or in some way, though it might not show itself right away.

    If it’s a part of the Word, which it is, I suppose it takes time to produce fruit, usually. (Matt 13:3-8)

    I’ve often hear about the parable of the sower who went into his field to sow, and heard it compared to people individually. What about pertaining to groups of people?

  107. on 28 Jul 2011 at 5:55 pmDoubting Thomas

    Wolfgang,
    You asked, “Which “similar or same” baptism was it which Peter had undergone and which he saw at Cornelius’ house and which caused him to remember which words of the lord Jesus?”

    The baptism he saw was the same baptism of the holy spirit that the apostles had received.

    Acts 10:44-46; “While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. (45) And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. (46) For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God…”

    But, you seem to be ignoring the next 2 verses.

    “…Then Peter declared, (47) ‘Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?’ (48) And he (Peter) commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ…”

    I think it stands to reason that if Peter commanded that these Gentiles be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (obviously in water as verse 47 says), then Peter and the apostles and the other believers from among the circumcised must have also been baptized (in water) in the name of Jesus Christ at some point prior to this time. I don’t think Peter would have prescribed something for the Gentiles if it wasn’t already a standard practice among the early Jewish Christians.

    Of course like always this is just my own humble opinion…

  108. on 28 Jul 2011 at 10:54 pmRay

    If John’s baptism and the work the disciples of Christ were doing as they baptized by the instuctions of Christ, were the same baptism, one of repentance as preparation for receiving the kingdom of heaven, I’m thinking that maybe John’s baptism was all they needed as far as water baptism is concerned.

    Some were baptized by John and he told them, “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.” and there they went, to follow Jesus.

    I wonder if all the 12 had been baptized by John.

  109. on 29 Jul 2011 at 11:58 amAnthony Buzzard

    Wolfgang

    …trinity adherents would be correct with their “3 person Godhead” view since there are definitely more commentaries out there which agree on a trinity perspective of certain verses and passages…

    Thanks. The Trinity is not promoted in many, many commentaries, especially modern ones. There are masses of liberal scholars who agree that the Trinity is not in the Bible.

    …how could Wierwille then — as you put it — have commented “that Peter thought he made a mistake by baptizing those Gentile converts in water” ?

    There is not a soul, that I can think of who treated Acts 10, 11 as Wierwille did, Wierwille who wrote some ridiculous things about “what the Greek said.”

    The obedience of water baptism is one of those easy doctrines which most have no difficulty with.

    Wierwille’s attempt to deal with Acts 11 is supported by no one in commentary I suggest.

    So it is the fantastic idea that only Wierwille understood Acts 11 against everyone else for 2000 years which I challenge. Perhaps you can show otherwise.

    Peer review and community are important in theology.

    The church need not be divided or trouble in any way over the easy matter of the public action of getting baptized as in Acst 8:12.

    Anthony

  110. on 29 Jul 2011 at 2:26 pmWolfgang

    Anthony,

    The church need not be divided or trouble in any way over the easy matter of the public action of getting baptized as in Acst 8:12.

    but it IS divided … and more so among those denominations within the Church who actually do propagate and practice some form of water baptism than with those who do understand the water baptism of John to have been replaced with baptism with holy spirit as Jesus proclaimed to his disciples shortly before he was taken up (cp Acts 1:5ff)

    Anthony, how many different views and doctrines are there on water baptism? How many water baptism adherents even insist that an already water baptized person be re-water baptized among their friends because somehow the previous water baptism was not sufficient, not correct, not according to who-knows-what, etc … ?
    Some folks at least are honest enough to state that it is basically no more than the entrance ritual into their denomination, and if someone is a “convert” from some other denomination he/she needs to therefore be re-baptized or else could not be regarded to be a legitimate member of their denomination.

    So then, how do you suggest that those different water baptizers come to the point of not being divided over water baptism ?

  111. on 29 Jul 2011 at 7:49 pmAnthony Buzzard

    Wolfgang

    …how do you suggest that those different water baptizers come to the point of not being divided over water baptism?

    The unitarian, Gospel of the Kingdom people, were not divided at all. Even those from the earliest Reformation. All believed in believer’s baptism in water.

    There is no division in the unitarian adventist camp from the 1850s on this point.

    The issue of rebaptism is quite different, and people will choose as they will since there is no direct parallel with the BIble (there were not 30000 denominations in Paul’s time).

    My objection is that no one has ever imagined what you say about Peter in Acts 11. Peter commanded baptism to be done and he commanded it in the name of Jesus.

    Jesus had commanded it to the end of the age in the Gt Commission.
    This is not the slightest bit difficult.

    Plain scripture should produce a desirable unity!

    There are quite other agendas at work in those who say otherwise (conscious or unconscious)
    Anthony

  112. on 29 Jul 2011 at 10:32 pmMark C.

    Wolfgang,

    Your questions about the various doctrines on baptism are also covered in my study. It’s a pity you have chosen to close your mind about it. Not because I’m any great writer or theologian, but I was indoctrinated with the same views you proclaim, yet I later spent several years researching the subject. I found a wealth of evidence that VPW never even mentioned, let alone refuted. Why not give it a fair chance, and if you disagree with something we can discuss it? But to simply refuse to consider it seems rather closed minded to me.

  113. on 31 Jul 2011 at 12:38 amRay

    I notice that Acts 11:15 tells me that the time when Peter recalled how John baptized with water, but that Jesus would baptize with the Holy Ghost, was not after he spoke the gospel to the Gentiles, but was as he began to speak.

    Peter then must have remembered what the Lord had said about how John baptized and about how Jesus would do it with the Holy Ghost, at the beginning of his message to the Gentiles, and sure enough, they received the Holy Ghost, speaking in tongues and all.

    So, who can forbid water? God did not withhold the gift of the Holy Ghost did he?

    That’s what it looks like to me.

  114. on 31 Jul 2011 at 12:56 amRay

    I noticed that Peter said the Holy Ghost fell on them as it did on Peter and the others on the day of Pentecost. (Acts 11:15)

    It came as the gospel was being preached.

    I wonder if God will pour out his Spirit without a class on the holy Spirit, but simply by pouring it out as he has sometimes in the past.

    If so, I wonder if it would be because those who have received the gift are not yet able to teach others also, or to minister the same as they have received or what.

    I still believe God will pour out the gift of the Spirit if people are gathered in the name of Jesus in order to receive it, and the teaching / preaching of the gospel.

    When I read of the pouring out of the Spirit and the baptizing of people with it, I think of how water might be poured out from heaven and get everyone soaking wet, but this is not water in the literal sense.

    I wonder if it’s that we haven’t got our doctrine together as we should, or if we haven’t reached the higher ground the Lord might require or what?

    I think there’s more we should be doing than simply waiting for the Lord to pour something out of his Spirit again.

  115. on 06 Aug 2012 at 1:41 pmRON

    the Spirit baptism is for everyone:)

    (Acts 2:38 KJV) “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.”

    (Acts 2:39 KJV) “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.”

  116. on 28 Jan 2013 at 2:25 amtimothy

    Wolfgang,

    Whew…thank heavens we have come to some pause with the last discussion. I have put it in the lager.

    What I find is another important subject which suddenly is captivating so many who are “over steering” and become like a 4 tak ventile eccentric.

    From you post #11,

    “Now, it seems that folks proposing that “water baptism” has something to do with making for a “clear conscience”, etc. seem be somehow view their act of getting into water and some words spoken by another believer/pastor/minister as a sacramental or perhaps mystical action (as seen in various religions’ baptismal initiation rites, or also as in the Roman Catholic Church and other Christian denominations which view a “baptism” as the rite of initiation into their group)”

    This has effect of being/becoming viral IMHO.

    John the Baptist and Jesus’ disciples baptized, pre Pentecost, and baptized with water to repentance. Jesus never baptized anyone before Pentecost. He endowed the disciples with supernatural spiritual powers to cast out evil spirit while healing.

    Water is made up of 2 elements—H2O and was used to wash the bloody sacrificial instruments and the bloody hands of the priest…with a significance of sins being washed away. baptizo(bapto) means dipping and washing pots and pans.

    Only Jesus can baptize with *holy spirit* WHICH is from another dimension.

    There was even a movement in England to abolish immersion by law! Accordingly, in an effort to cover up the true meaning of the original word, the term is left obscured in a “Greekish” form.

    Does this new doctrine mean that one has to be immersion baptized to be Kingdom Ready?

    Wolfgang please continue.

    Timothy

  117. on 28 Jan 2013 at 5:48 amtimothy

    Anthony Buzzard,

    Having already watched at least 4 videos where you discuss the gentiles baptism in acts,
    You are not being proper with your explanations.

    First, here you write(111):

    “My objection is that no one has ever imagined what you say about Peter in Acts 11.

    Peter commanded baptism to be done and he commanded it in the name of Jesus.”

    Now try to read Acts 11: 15–18 again, and very slowly without any jabbering.

    A very elated Peter comes to exclaim his joy that the gentiles received holy spirit into manifestations, speaking in tongues, by just hearing GODs word spoken.

    Romans 10: (kjv)
    17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

    Acts 11: (kjv)
    15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.

    These members of Cornelius’ household and Cornelius himself spoke in tongues as they were baptized with holy spirit.

    16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.

    This does not say that Peter commanded anyone, here in Acts 11, to be baptized with water, because Jesus said “you absolutely will be baptized with holy spirit”

    17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?

    Since GOD had, by Jesus Christ, given holy spirit by hearing of his word spoken, through Peter, to Cornelius and his household. And Peter and the Jopa saints knew this because they heard the manifestation of speaking in tongues which magnified GOD.

    18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

    The point is that with holy spirit, and not water, comes the spirit of truth gift. And speaking in tongues is the proof one has received their gift.

    You and your cohort swished over the Acts 11 testimony of peter with out even understanding what Peter was saying at his critique.

    Do you now teach that there are two Baptism?

    Timothy

  118. on 28 Jan 2013 at 6:50 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    The unitarian, Gospel of the Kingdom people, were not divided at all. Even those from the earliest Reformation. All believed in believer’s baptism in water.

    There is no division in the unitarian adventist camp from the 1850s on this point.

    You are just dodging my earlier question … you know as well as anyone that there are about as many differences among those Christian groups who claim water baptism as essential for salvation as there are groups … form dipper to immerser to sacrament proponents to just outward witness proposers …

    Sure, all believe in a person’s baptism in water … they all just have different doctrines about the function of water baptism,, the necessity of water baptism for salvation, the question if water baptism is a sacrament or not, the particular words that must or need not be used, the manner in which the water baptism be performed, etc …. And .. guess what? .. they all claim that their doctrines are what the Bible teaches … just as you do.

    So then, Anthony, which of the many water baptism doctrines and practices is to be preferred, if any?

  119. on 28 Jan 2013 at 8:05 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    since Jesus did address his apostles in

  120. on 28 Jan 2013 at 8:08 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    since Jesus did address the topic of baptism to his apostles in Acts 1, what did Jesus teach his apostles with those words?

    Acts 1:5 (KJV)
    For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

    Did Jesus say
    “For John truly baptized ONLY with water; but ye shall be baptized WITH WATER AND with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.” ?

  121. on 28 Jan 2013 at 8:14 amWolfgang

    Anthony,

    why does it seem such a strange idea to you that John’s baptism with water was followed “not many days” after Jesus addressed his apostles by holy spirit baptism … especially since you have Jesus’ words for it ?! Is Jesus not reliable?

    Since Jesus was using John and his baptism as point of comparison, it should be clear that what Jesus was saying did not only apply to those apostles to whom he was directly speaking … because John was baptizing not just the apostles but all who came to him with a desire to repent ( or did John only baptize those apostles?) Thus if the one baptism (of John with water) applied to more than just the apostles, the other (the one Jesus said would follow a few days later) would also apply to more than just the apostles

  122. on 28 Jan 2013 at 8:31 amtimothy

    Anthoney Buzzard

    also from #111 you have written:

    “There are quite other agendas at work in those who say otherwise (conscious or unconscious)
    Anthony”

    What is your conscious or unconscious hidden agenda?

    Timothy

  123. on 17 Jun 2013 at 4:10 pmGigi

    it is very intersting to follow your conversation. First, without the holy Spirit nobody will understand the scripture. That means when one begin to read one’s bible and pray for the holy Spirit, God will give His holy Spirit to one, because then one understand the scripture, who Jesus is, what he did for us that he was crucified for mankind’s sin, that He was resurrected from His Father. That Jesus preached the gospel of the Kingdom. This all nobody understand without the holy Spirit. Do you agree? Now, when one believe in this he wants to live his life with the Lord Jesus Christ, he want’s to get rid of his old life, where he still is a sinner, and he ( off course she too) wants to live a sinless life( he/she tries) before God through Jesus Christ. How can one get rid of his old life? One repents and get baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ. He gets buried in the water and comes up to live a new life with God through His Son Jesus Christ. Without water baptism one still stuck in his old life, and is not able to follow Jesus Christ, because one will not listen to the holy Spirit. Please read Act 9:17,18.. Ananias went to Paul and lay his hands on Paul and the holy Spirit came upon Paul and he could see again, and now what did Paul do ? HE GOT UP AND WAS BAPTIZED. His baptism with the holy Spirit opened his eyes and he was not blind anymore. It was not enough for Paul, because he had to bury his old life in water baptism. This is what I believe. May God bless you.

  124. on 17 Jun 2013 at 5:40 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – what would you make of me? I was baptized as an infant (sprinkled with water most likely) in the Roman Catholic church. About 46 years later, I was baptized with the holy spirit but I have yet to be baptized with water of my own accord. I would do it in a heartbeat but I don’t want to do it under the Mt 28:19 formula and as a trinitarian, which is what my church does.

  125. on 17 Jun 2013 at 7:09 pmJas

    Tim
    Being baptized with water has no effect on eternal salvation. It is a process God has given so we can present ourself as a virgin to enter a COVENANT relationship with Him. It is by choice but does carry a reward of becoming part of the promises to Abraham and probably a few before him. The Holy Spirit is a promised gift to teach us the unaltered Word of God. If everyone was being taught or were being led by HS there would be no need for the Bible or someone to teach it because we would all be in unity on EVERY subject. The other gifts would be given by need as long as there is a need like a child with cancer

  126. on 18 Jun 2013 at 3:06 amJoy

    I am thinking that perhaps it depends on the maturity of the person wanting to be baptized…I am just wondering how young is too young to be baptized…?Just looking for more answers on Baptism and age…

  127. on 18 Jun 2013 at 5:10 amGigi

    Tim, why don’t you ask a brother who believe in the one God to baptize you in the Name of Jesus Christ. Now we have summertime and you can get baptized in a sea or lake. Come to Bulgaria I will baptize you.smile. To get baptized with the holy Spirit does NOT mean that we should not get our water baptism.

    It is such a great moment when you come out of the water and your old life is gone, and you start a new life with our Lord Jesus Christ. Every time when I go back with my thoughts into my old, sad life, the holy Spirit reminds me that I have a new life in Jesus Christ.

    Joy, there is no age limit when one understands who Jesus is, and what He did for us. To believe in the Kingdom of God, and in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

  128. on 18 Jun 2013 at 10:41 amXavier

    2 points on Matthew 28.19:

    1. People should not see “THE name” as some sort Abracadabra, Hocus Pocus, magic “formula”. It is not! Instead we should understand it in its Hebraic context as REPRESENTATIVE of the Messiah’s authority, power, message and glory. Example, a government representative might say, ‘I come in the name of the President of the U.S.A.’

    2. Do not ASSUME, as many Christians do, that this is some kind of Trinitarian verse or “formula”. The Trinity defines God as “Father, Son, HS”. This is not what the verse is saying. Read it carefully.

  129. on 18 Jun 2013 at 11:07 amJas

    Xavier
    In this case it represents a priestley order given the authority to mediate the Covenant of which Jesus is our High Priest replacing the Aaronic order which was faulty because it could not make a person perfect and relied upon men to teach the Words of the Covenants .

  130. on 18 Jun 2013 at 2:29 pmGigi

    the catholic church changed Matthew 28:19 from in the Name of Jesus into the Name of the Father, the Son and the holy Spirit, 325 n Chr. And now the Scholars search in books and take verses out of the bible to show it is not the trinity, but all the trinitarian churches are baptizing with the trinitarian formular.When you read it carefully, you read N A M E and NOT N A M E S; what does it mean in the trinitarian church… the NAME ? Three person in ONE God, the Father, the Son and the holy Spirit, and this is what the catholic church are teaching christians with Matthew 28:19… out of the catholic catechism…233 Christians are baptized, in the name “(singular) and not on the names” (plural) of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit [See the Creed of Pope Vigilius in 552: DS 415], because there is only one God, the Father Almighty and His only begotten Son and the Holy Spirit: the Most Holy Trinity…….

    The apostle all baptized in the Name of Jesus, and this is correct, because we die ( symbolic)with Jesus and bury our old life and we come out of the water to follow Jesus in our new life.

    If Matthew 28:19 are Jesus words, why don’t you read the same in in Mark 16:15,16 ? Mark 16:15,16 is the truth to me.

    Baptism is not coming in a Name to representative, baptism is changing your life, and you show the seen and unseen world that you want to be a follower of Jesus Christ.

    Acts 2:38 in his original language… Petros de pros autous

    metanoêsate [phêsin]
    kai baptisthêtôi hekastos humôn epi tôi onomati Iêsou Christou
    eis aphesin tôn hamartiôn humôn
    kai lêmpsesthe tên dôrean tou Hagiou Pneumatos

    May God bless.

  131. on 18 Jun 2013 at 2:40 pmJas

    Gigi
    Actually they added the reference to baptism in this verse, they did not change it from in the name of Jesus which btw has been shown correct from Acts.
    But Xavier is correct it means under the authority as Jesus represents God and man both as The Mediator.

  132. on 19 Jun 2013 at 12:10 amtimothy

    Gigi,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=so72VdB8KVA

    I like the Christian life!

  133. on 19 Jun 2013 at 3:31 amtimothy

    My ole friend Tim(akaA) and Gigi

    I follow your believing and ask you to follow this:

    Numbers have a significance in the bible and especially two, twice, doulbled, two or more, etc..

    Genesis 41: (kjv)
    32 And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice; it is because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.

    Deuteronomy 19: (kjv0
    15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.

    Proverbs 15: (kjv)
    22 Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.

    Two, biblical, signify s “it is established”.

    Another two uses of two too establish.

    2 Corinthians 13: (kjv)
    1 This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.

    1 Timothy 5: (kjv)
    19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.

    Tim, here comes my point…I have two witnesses that water baptism, by men, has been replaced and replaced by holy spirit baptism, a metaphysical phenom, by Jesus Christ and only Jesus Christ can baptize with holy spirit.

    I have two, very accountable, witnesses as illustrated in the two following, quoted verses from GODs word.

    Matthew 3: (kjv)
    11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost(pneuma), and with fire:

    Acts !: (kjv)
    5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost(pneuma) not many days hence.(RED LETTERS)

    Here is the water we should be concerned about

    Jeremiah 2: (kjv)
    13 For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.

  134. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:56 amJoy

    Hi Gigi,does it mean even young children can get baptized as long as they understand the important message(s)?Would like to know what you think…Thanks!God bless.

  135. on 19 Jun 2013 at 8:05 amXavier

    “In the name of” does not prescribe a ritualistic formula of words to be called out while baptizing a person, but explains by what right or authority baptism is commanded.

    The Jewish leaders asked Jesus concerning the things he taught and practiced, which included baptism, “By what authority doest thou these things? And who gave thee this authority?” Jesus said their question about authority would be answered if they answered an equivalent question: “The baptism of John, whence was it? From heaven, or of men?” They refused to answer the question (Matt. 21:23-27).

    In this debate over the issue of authority, the Jewish leaders and Jesus were not discussing what ritualistic formulas were in order but whether the things taught and practiced were divinely authorized.

    We do not know what John or Jesus or the Apostles said during the act of baptizing anyone, but we know they all had divine authority for what they preached and practiced regarding baptism.”
    Truth Magazine, “Baptism: In the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, or in the Name of Jesus Christ?”, Ron Halbrook.

  136. on 19 Jun 2013 at 9:06 amJas

    Timothy
    The biggest problem with your claim is neither the Apostles or any of the disciples understood these verses to mean what you claim . Many times throughout the OT the Spirit came upon men and even once it came upon a donkey causing it to speak in a human tongue . Also the Spirit was shared with the disciples by Jesus himself to enable them to prepare the way for his future visits.
    In Jeremiah God promises to write his Law upon the hearts and mind for those that accepted the new priesthood covenant with Jesus as their mediator and being baptized with HS is metaphoric for this promise .

    Xavier
    Excellent example passage..

  137. on 19 Jun 2013 at 11:55 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – thanks for sharing your experience. I would like to hear from others if they felt any different after their water baptism?

    Xavier – technically I agree with you, however, I think God judges the heart and on this matter, I believe the heart of my church is they are baptizing people into the trinity and in my heart, I cannot pass that off on a technicality.

    Jas – I agree it is not a salvation issue which is largely why I have not sought it out. The other reason is that I would like to visit Israel someday and would love to be baptized in the Jordan. Was hoping it was going to be this year but it hasn’t panned out.

    Timothy – I love the idea of ‘two or three witnesses’ and I have used that in my research with Mt 28:19 as an argument against it. Why is this ‘grand commission’ not repeated in the same way anywhere else in the NT? That to me is a strong argument in itself that it is spurious or has been corrupted.

  138. on 19 Jun 2013 at 3:35 pmXavier

    Tim

    Do you think Jesus or his Apostles would sign a Trinitarian statement of faith and join any old Evangelical church that believes that?

  139. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:11 pmJas

    Xavier
    Are you implying that Tim can not worship the Creator God in a trinitarian church? Maybe you are presuming that you and your group have 100% truth but I can guaranty that you know of differences in some of yours and their beliefs . So do you think Jesus or the apostles would sign a false belief statement or be a part of a church that is decieved in anyway which lack of 100% unity is proof of some level of deception?

  140. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:27 pmXavier

    Jas

    No they wouldn’t sign it.

    What say you?

  141. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:35 pmJas

    Xavier
    I agree.
    So if we were to follow their conviction do we then completely isolate ourselves? Or do we just know our relationship with God is dependent upon our beliefs?

  142. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:43 pmXavier

    Jas

    Our commission/job is to preach the Gospel about the soon-coming KOG and the name of Jesus to all peoples.

    Question is who is prepared to hear us out at least.

  143. on 19 Jun 2013 at 4:54 pmJas

    Xavier
    If I was 100% sure that I understood the soon-coming KOG, the nature and requirements I would certainly preach it but there is still some unanswered questions. While I am certain many beliefs are false that doesnt make mine true. Right now it is my commision to seek the truth through proof and reproof which discussion and research are my tools. I would suggest everyone do this.

  144. on 19 Jun 2013 at 7:09 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Xavier – no, I don’t think so, but I agree with what Jas said in #143. I’m not 100% certain the trinity is not correct, so I don’t really know. On this matter, I have been impacted by Romans 14. The examples there dealing with beliefs about food I think can apply to beliefs about other matters such as belief in the trinity.

  145. on 19 Jun 2013 at 8:11 pmGigi

    Tim, I like the christian life too. It makes me free and strong, because God is watching over me and help me to stay on the right path.

    Joy, I believe if a child at an age of ten who knows and understand the gospel and want to get baptized ( and not because of the Parents ), it wants to get baptized to follow Jesus, then I believe this child can be baptized, because it is not a Baby anymore and in an age it can understand.

    timothy, I understand what you mean about wittnesses ,and you are right, now comes a “but”, to become baptize in water is a commandment of Jesus Christ, so you do not need a wittness, you have to be obedient. Mark 16:16. John was right that he only baptized with water, because Jesus baptized with holy Spirit, and everybody who is baptized with the holy Spirit wants to become the baptism with water, because this means what I have written in 123.

    Please have patience with me and my english, my mother language is german so I will make some mistakes. Thanks!

    God bless.

  146. on 19 Jun 2013 at 8:43 pmJas

    ” John was right that he only baptized with water,”
    Gigi
    John officiated over the most important baptism with the HS after he witnessed Jesus’ water baptism.
    I think Jesus’ water baptism represented Adam’s, cleaning mankind of the sin that alienated them from the presence of the Creator allowing all mankind the opportunity of Final Judgement.

  147. on 20 Jun 2013 at 12:38 amtimothy

    Gigi,

    I have been friends with David Crosby since 1963 and we both are offshore sailors. His music has kept me going and now this song gives something to inspire my musing about the story in GODs word.

    My friend Wolfgang has German as his native tongue too. I was married to a German Girl and lived in Germany in the 1070’s. Even took it at University of Miami in 60’s and often read the Luther Bible to get even a better understanding of certain subjects. English is a Germanic language too by the way.

    Wolfgangs website:

    http://www.bibelcenter.de/

    Tim(akaA),
    Check your FB messages for something new I found about the 3X-trinity formula and its origin. I rejoice that we have the same apprehensions about the Matt 28:19 verse.

  148. on 20 Jun 2013 at 3:17 amGigi

    timothy, wenn ich Schwierigkeiten habe mich in der englischen Sprache auszudrücken, dann kann ich ja deutsche Worte benutzen. Gut zu wissen.

    Ich lese zur Zeit in der Luther Bibel von 1545, and I have got a Luther bible from 1534 too, and the german is such an old german very difficult to read in the bible from 1534.

    Where in Germany did you live? I am from the nothern part of Germany, but now living in Bulgaria. I know Wolfgang too. I met him at a conference in 2010.

    I am not on FB anymore since 2011 I guess. I prayed to God if it His will, and I had the answer in my heart ” NO, go away”, so I went away. I am on Skype, and maybe we can talk on Skype together.

    I searched a lot about Matthew 28:19 and it does not make sense if it is Jesus our Lord’s commandment, because the Apostel baptized in Jesus Name. The catholic church has spoken it come from them, so why should I doubt them. I am baptized in the name of the Father, Son and holy Spirit and after I found the truth , that there is no trinity, reading my bible. I got re baptized in the Name of Jesus and believe me this changed everything. I still got the peace I became after my re baptism. I am so thankful that God did not give up to touch me until I open my heart for Him.It is now 19 years ago.It has been such a joy to understand the bible, and to look at Jesus and share my sadness and joy with Him. He always lift me up, when others put me down. Praise God the Father of our Lor Jesus Christ, who became our Father through Jesus Christ. Believe me Tim I love Him and I could talk for hours about Jesus Christ, and what He did for us…. a big smile…

  149. on 20 Jun 2013 at 7:44 amXavier

    Tim

    Romans 14 is about the weak and the strong. Do you think Paul was the weak one and should the weak remain weak?

  150. on 20 Jun 2013 at 9:22 amJas

    Xavier
    Romans 13,14 is addressing specific problems relating to living in a cultural district. We are lacking the letter or message that Paul was addressing . But considering some were abstaining from meat completely this is probably about the source of the meat, whether or not it was prepared properly or had been used in a sacrificial ceremony offered to a roman god. As for the days of the week the romans dedicated certain days to certain gods with some being holier than others so if someone worship the Sabbath many romans would say they worshiped saturn and sunday worship was to the Sun. Paul was stating do not worry about or even question the source of the meat because the real source was God and no one could make the meat unclean by actions you are unaware of.

  151. on 20 Jun 2013 at 10:50 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Xavier,

    To me, Romans 14 is about the mature in faith not being argumentative with those that are weak in faith about items that are not essential. I don’t believe the trinity is essential because I know many people who hold to the trinity and yet I am convinced that God has put his spirit upon them as well. You don’t give babies meat to eat. You wait until they are older and ready.

  152. on 20 Jun 2013 at 12:16 pmGigi

    Tim, Romans 14 tells you that you should not forsake the weak. If someone do not like to eat meat do not eat meat either, that you do not making them vulnerable.
    Tim it is essential which God you are believing in. In one god and three person or in God the Father and His human Son Jesus Christ.

    I doubt a little, that christian who believes in the trinity has got the holy Spirit. The enemy put the trinity lie into the bible and he blinded thousands of Christians, so they worship the enemy with the trinity, but not the One God and His Son. satan can do miracle too, that people stays with him. When one is baptized with the holy Spirit he will become the truth when one asking for it. It is God’s timetable to give it to one. I believe you have to read the bible with a prayer for the truth.

    God bless.

  153. on 20 Jun 2013 at 12:45 pmJas

    Gigi
    You are doing exactly what Paul is teaching against here. You are convinced that people who go to a trinitarian church do so to worship a false god so if you were to attend one it would convict you of idolatry but Tim is no convinced totally that the Godhead is one in nature but make no mistake that Tim believes in One Creator which all things proceed from. I myself reject the CONCEPT of the trinity but have reservations that the concept of one being above the angels is completely correct. I believe it is very possible that the Most High set up a hierarchy with tribal lessor gods and very possible the HS is none other then Wisdom the first created and the Chavah who Eve was named after.
    I think that Tim is the strong and you may be the weak and think it would be wrong for either of you to judge ones motives.

  154. on 20 Jun 2013 at 1:52 pmtimothy

    Xavier,

    You seem to joke about “ABRACADABRA” and the Matthew 28:19 trinity formula.

    For your information, the word abracadabra actually comes from the gentiles who came from the East to occupy Hebrew lands in Israel. These people practiced unrighteous religions and tainted the People of GOD with their idolatrous pastimes.

    Hebrew
    “ab”=father
    “ben”=son
    “ruach hakodesh=holy spirit

    ABRACADABRA is derived from these three being combined into what some of us call the trinity formula=in the name of the father, the son and the holy spirit.

    http://askville.amazon.com/word-abracadabra-originate/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=1364990

    And to make matters even worse, these things are readily available to purchase on AMAZON right now.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=abracadabra+amulets

  155. on 20 Jun 2013 at 2:05 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – I disagree that Trinitarian or Unitarian belief is essential. I believe God judges our hearts and as long as our hearts put God first, I believe He will forgive us if we don’t understand His nature. Particularly, as you say, when the devil is confounding us.

    Further, some things I am struggling with. We have the luxury in this day of having ample access to not only the bible but commentaries. What of all the billions of illiterate people throughout history? How can God expect them to understand Him when all they might know of Him is what somebody else has told them?

    A recent book I read (Tortured for Christ) amazed me that the holy spirit was alive and well behind the iron curtain during Communism, where believers were being imprisoned and tortured and pressured to recant their faith and they didn’t – just like the earliest Christians. What astounded me was that most had little or no access to a bible.

    So too the earliest Christians had no epistles or gospels to pour over and discuss, and yet the Church flourished. They did so by word of mouth testimony and the power of the holy spirit.

    So what I am coming to lately is pondering the proper role of the Bible in my life. Yes, it is an inspiring book and so precious that we have some recorded history of who Jesus was and what he did. But these divisive debates that have spawned thousands of denominations based upon how people interpret certain passages. I’m sorry, but more and more I am seeing that is all coming from the devil.

  156. on 20 Jun 2013 at 6:12 pmGigi

    When it is not important to know who God is, so why spoke Jesus in John 17:25 these words? If it is unimportant to know who God is, and we can worship a triune god or the One God without being triune, then why does John 17:3 tell when you get eternal life.

    Because evil wants us to be confused, that’s why it is so important to pray for wisdom. we should not follow Pastors and Teachers without reading in the bible and searching to understand the scripture.

    Please read John 14:26, then you will understand that the holy Spirit will reveal the truth to us. We have to have trust in God, that He will give us the knowledge when we need it.

    Jas, I do not understand what you want to tell me in 153 ? I said, that if someone is weak and do not want to eat meat, we should not forsake him, like Paul said in Roman 14:3
    Yes Jas, I am weak and our Lord Jesus is given me strength. If I would be strong, maybe I would say… I do not need Jesus in my life, but I need Him in my life, and I am thankful that I am as a weak person God has taken me as His daughter.

    Jas, if someone is worshipping the triune god, how can he worship the true God? There is no triune God in the bible.I do not convince anybody. I want to show up, what the scripture is telling us. Please read John 12:48 and 49.In 49 you can see that there is a Son and His Father. Jas, if you or anybody else want to worship a triune god, you can do this . I do no not blame you for this. I only wanted to open your eyes for what our Lord Jesus spoke to us about His Father and himself, that you are able to see there is only one God and His human Son Jesus Christ…John 6:40 ;John 14:6 .God bless.

  157. on 20 Jun 2013 at 7:09 pmJas

    Gigi
    We were discussing Tim’s use of Romans 14 by which his conscience does not convict him when he attends a trinitarian church . I think Tim shows great faith by not judging others who might be deceived in one way or another because he understands that anything less then 100% truth is deception. He has not ever judged someone on their belief but will disagree. I do not myself completely understand the nature of the Creator but I am 100% certain it is not the concept of the trinity or do I believe your concept is correct . So I see you the pot calling the kettle black. Your claim that you are led by the HS in my opinion is without proof as the other 2 billion that claim it. Maybe somewhere there is a group isolated from the world that has 100% truth which The HS dwells amongst but I have not found them Yet. Till then I will test and retest what is acceptable for me to believe by making sure I have the best interpretation of what we have through proper translation,historical and cultural evidence. If I never find enough truth to properly enter the Covenants than I hope that I will be found acceptable at final judgement because of my love for humanity but my goal is to be a part of 1st resurrection of those who entered and maintained a Covenant Relationship with the Most High during the millennium .

  158. on 20 Jun 2013 at 7:22 pmtimothy

    Gina,

    I ask Wolfgang to give you my Skype name.

  159. on 21 Jun 2013 at 1:08 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Amen, Jas.

    Gigi – just to clarify, I don’t worship a triune God. In fact, I spend a good deal of time on a Facebook forum trying to show from scripture to Trinitarians why I believe they are wrong. I spent over two years researching this matter as I was obsessed with it. I am quite convinced that God is not triune. YHWH Elohim, YHWH echad!

    But at my church, where I would say 90% of the people haven’t really thought it through and just accept the church’s statement of faith, what am I to do? These are otherwise ‘good Christians’. They exhibit fruit – caring for others, volunteering, putting God first in their life, looking to Jesus as their example. They really aren’t so different from us. They really just don’t have the propensity to search or sort it out for themselves. I don’t see the point in creating an argument with them over it. Whether God is triune or not, does it matter with respect to how we are supposed to live our lives?

  160. on 21 Jun 2013 at 7:44 amGigi

    Tim, we should not judge it is not a right way to talk to people. Even I am not like minded with people I love them, and because I love them I show out of the scripture the trinity is not biblical, and our Lord Jesus never spoke about a triune god.

    I believe, I have to tell christians who believe in the trinity, they should search in the bible asking for the guide of the holy Spirit, that they understand that there is only ONE God and His Son Jesus Christ.

    I think for me it is important to know who God and Jesus is, because Jesus said this to us.

    Jas and Tim when you think I am judging here, than I have to tell you ..NO.. I am not doing this.

    I always have the problem , that american christian has a problem with me to understand what I am saying to express my thoughts to them. I asked you for being patient with me, because of the language.

    There are some unbeliever friends in my life, they are sweetest and helpful people I know. Should I say..Oh God will not judge them, because they are so loving and helpful?

    If they do not believe in God and His Son, they can be the sweetest people in the world, they miss the path if they do not return to God through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

    Yes Tim, it is important to know who God is, because this will save our Lifes. John 17:3

    I believe too, that God will give to us the right time to talk to trinitarian people, to show up the truth from the scripture , that God is the one God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and that He has given His only begotten Son to mankind,

    that we can come back to God our heavenly Father through Jesus Christ. How much love God and His Son has for us, because Jesus nailed our sins on the cross and God took them away because of the obedience from His Son.

    God bless

  161. on 21 Jun 2013 at 9:27 amJas

    Gigi
    I would say discussion about God And Jesus is good between 2 or more people and will be means of finding truth. But to declare you are led by the HS and they are not when their fruit may exceed yours is hypocritical and condemning through exalting yourself. I myself am of the opinion the HS is not at work in Orthodox Christianity because they have been made to believe lies which I include myself plus I dont see any proof in christianity by deeds exceeding other religions or atheist .
    I believe your zeal is driven by love by which you will be judged by and found worthy at final judgement

  162. on 21 Jun 2013 at 10:28 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi = a story from the bible that really struck me and I believe I was led to at the right time, was Acts 10. Peter saw that God was putting his spirit on the gentiles and not just the Jews. Can you imagine how hard that must have been for the Jews to accept? But Peter responded to those challenging his associating with gentiles in Acts 11:17

    So if God gave them the same gift he gave us who believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to think that I could stand in God’s way?”

    I’m not talking about Trinitarians being ‘good people’. I’m talking about them exhibiting the fruit that comes from being touched with the holy spirit as I have been. This is how we will know them – our true brothers and sisters. I don’t care if they, with their limited earthly minds like mine, misunderstand the nature of an infinite God.

  163. on 21 Jun 2013 at 9:13 pmDoubting Thomas

    I agree 100% Tim (aka Antioch)… 🙂

  164. on 21 Jun 2013 at 9:49 pmXavier

    Tim

    I don’t care if they, with their limited earthly minds like mine, misunderstand the nature of an infinite God.

    God cares…

    My people are being destroyed because they don’t know me.

    This is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and Christ Jesus whom you sent. Hosea 4.6; John 17.3

  165. on 21 Jun 2013 at 10:23 pmJas

    Xavier
    Who are you to say that your belief is 100% correct.
    All I need is the title El Elyon to know your belief is False but there are dozens of more which state have no other Gods before me. Yes I disagree the CONCEPT of the trinity is false or any concept that makes Jesus God but also disagree that there is only One Being higher than Angels prior to Jesus being exalted but do not claim to completely understand the Hierarchy of Heaven.

  166. on 22 Jun 2013 at 12:06 amtimothy

    Xavier,

    Here is the Circle of Raphael amulet available to purchase from England today(even comes with a free silver chain). This is the one with “father, son, holy spirit” surrounding the
    “abracadabra” trinity symbol.

    http://www.circleraphael.co.uk/abracadabra_talisman.html

    “Raphael in Judaism”

    The angels mentioned in the Torah, the older books of the Hebrew Bible, are without names. Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish of Tiberias (A.D. 230–270),

    asserted that all the specific names for the angels were brought back by the Jews from Babylon,

    and modern commentators would tend to agree.
    Raphael is named in several Jewish apocryphal books.

    Raphael in the Book of Enoch……..

    IMHO…This information points to an origin of the “trinity”, in part, coming from the Persian area gentiles who re-inhabited Northern Israel.

    JAS has written many informative post here on KR about these gentiles. Thanks.

  167. on 22 Jun 2013 at 1:55 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Xavier – your verses, I think, are directed at people who have not been touched with the holy spirit. To those that have, we are all still learning about God. Think of Peter in the Acts 10/11 story. He learned something new about God, did he not? God was giving the same spirit to the gentiles that he had given to the Jews. That was a big pill for him and the others to swallow, but they did.

    That’s all I am saying – when dealing with others that are seemingly touched by and led by the holy spirit, shouldn’t that be our criteria on whether to call them brother or sister or not? As opposed to what their fallible minds believe about God’s nature or even the ins and outs of the relationship between Father and Son?

  168. on 22 Jun 2013 at 5:50 amGigi

    I do believe, that if one has the holy Spirit dwell in him/ her, they will be obedient to Jesus and get water baptized in the Name of Jesus, as Cornelius and his household did.

    Jas, your judgings shows me that you are only filled with your spirit. The holy Spirit is kind and would not talk to brethren like you do. I really do not understand you, what you want to tell me wit… your zeal is ….

    A conversation should lift people up and not down. So if one do not go for water baptism he/ she is disobediet before God, and one believe in the trinity he/ she is worshipping a false god. These are facts, and it does not blame me , if you believe in something else.

    Jesus Christ did not die for our sins, that christians believe in the false triune God. Our Lord Jesus spoke about who God is, so everybody should read their bible carefully, and everybody will know that God is ONE without three, and Jesus Christ is the human Son of God.

    People who gets aggressive in a conversation wants to provoke. Why do they want to provoke ? Because they do not have good arguments what they are talking about.

    God bless!

  169. on 22 Jun 2013 at 7:16 amXavier

    Tim

    As opposed to what their fallible minds believe about God’s nature or even the ins and outs of the relationship between Father and Son?

    If you have different believes regarding God the Father and His only-begotten Son you have another spirit.

    This is how we know if they have the spirit of God: Every person who believes that Jesus Christ was an actual human being has the spirit that is from God. 1 John 4.2

  170. on 22 Jun 2013 at 11:05 amJas

    Gigi
    What profit would it be for me to judge people when I dont CLAIM to have achieved anymore greater place then you or the other 6 + billion people on earth. I judge so called facts not people.

  171. on 22 Jun 2013 at 11:33 amGigi

    Jas, which facts do you judge, please be so kind and explain them to me.

    God bless.

  172. on 22 Jun 2013 at 11:43 amJas

    “People who gets aggressive in a conversation wants to provoke. Why do they want to provoke ?”

    Gigi
    You are correct that I want to provoke but what I want to provoke is some absolute proofs instead of just claims that I find witnessed against over and over. I ask the same of trinitarians,oneness and others. I myself am a strict unitarian with respect of the Most High God but can not buy into monotheism of the Elohim of which the Creator is the Most High.

  173. on 22 Jun 2013 at 11:49 amJas

    Gigi
    One can not judge facts only so called facts. If your claims are true then they should be completely provable by the bible,historical and cultural evidence .

  174. on 22 Jun 2013 at 12:23 pmGigi

    Jas, now tell me is provoking a sin or not? What for facts are not true I have given here. Please point them out.

  175. on 22 Jun 2013 at 12:44 pmJas

    Gigi
    Jesus provoked the disciples to follow him through truth and miracles ,the disciples provoked others through truth and miracles .
    So provocation might just be profitable in the right situation.
    Prove to me your understanding of the Nature of God is completely correct. Prove to me that you have the HS by the bible and by deeds exceeding those of different beliefs or prove they dont.
    Proof should be your greatest gift because it should live in you if you have the HS.
    If you cant provide these proofs then dont require others when they say they have the HS. My problem is when people exalt themself above others who show as much or more fruit , other than that I am here for discussion.

  176. on 22 Jun 2013 at 3:06 pmGigi

    What does the scripture say how do you see that one has the holy Spirit. Do you know this ?

    I am not the type of christian who exalt myself above others.

    I am joyful to live with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. I am thankful that God wanted me as His daugher and touched me as long I open my heart for Him. I thankful for His love and mercy He has given to me. Jas, this is what we should tell each other to lift us up and not discuss everything and to provoke , that one feel down. What did Paul write to the Corinthians? 1:21,22, read it and be joyful that the holy Spirit dwells in you and the fruit we have, why should we not let everybody know, how good God is, how much mercy He is given to us when we do His will.

    The scripture tells us how we know that one has the holy Spirit,right? So why do you blame me to talk about my life with God and our Lord Jesus Christ. To tell you the fruits in my life with God. Praise Him and do not debate everything small, that a dicussion does not become fruitful.

    We can only understand the Bible, when God the Holy Spirit is our (spiritual) eyes and our minds and hearts open, to let us understand the infinite words of God:1 Cor.2:14;Job 32:8;Lukas 24:45; Psalm 119:18
    The Bible says that we are to compare Scripture to Scripture (spiritual things with spiritual) with one another to understand the Bible:1 Cor. 2:13; John:6:63 ;2 Peter 1:20

    We must study the Bible humble and pious, always pleading that God would open our spiritual eyes and allowed us to understand His Word.

    When you read the scripture I pointed out, do you believe every one has the holy Spirit, who say…I am a christian?

    God bless!

  177. on 22 Jun 2013 at 6:18 pmSheryl

    Gigi…. I appreciate how you give an example of God’s love by being a gentle loving “blogger” yourself. On the other hand, I can truly relate to what Jas is saying about people needing to mind their own humility.

    I think Americans (and I am one) have become incredibly “me” -centered, as is proven by the amount of “self” help and vanity consumer products — not to mention all the money spent on therapy because a person just isn’t happy. I’ve heard churches say you need to take care of your”self” first, so you can care for others. I don’t remember ever seeing anything like that in the Bible, in fact I see quite the opposite. It doesn’t say “love your neighbor after you love yourself.”

    We can draw more people to the truth by being welcoming and loving, but we can only keep them here by being real and truthful … which often involves challenge and provocation.

  178. on 22 Jun 2013 at 9:00 pmJas

    “What does the scripture say how do you see that one has the holy Spirit. Do you know this ?”

    Gigi
    Yes I know the scriptures very well but to exacty what verse do you use a proof text . Everything given by God has a purpose and a proof which may not be found in a single proof text.

    “I am not the type of christian who exalt myself above others.”

    Yet a person that goes to a trinitarian church has not achieved what you claim you have.

    “Jas, this is what we should tell each other to lift us up and not discuss everything and to provoke , that one feel down. ”

    If I was a teacher everything I say should provoke to seek the truth not just accept what I say unless perhaps I could provide you proofs by speaking the gospel in many languages I dont know, by healing, by feeding the masses and other gifts

    “When you read the scripture I pointed out, do you believe every one has the holy Spirit, who say…I am a christian?”

    Actually no but that because I understand the purpose of receiving the HS which comes from an over all understanding of the whole bible. You whole issue is what purpose would be the giving of the HS when many Atheist and people of other religions shine as bright as all christians who claim to be led by the HS.
    WHERE IS THE BEEF?
    I am not attacking you I am just holding you by the same standard you hold others by.

  179. on 23 Jun 2013 at 1:34 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Xavier – you quote 1 Jn 4:2. Every Trinitarian would agree with that statement so I don’t understand your point.

    Question – are no Trinitarians ‘true Christians’ in your eyes?

  180. on 23 Jun 2013 at 3:04 amGigi

    Jas, I am sorry I do not understand your sentence….. I am not attacking you I am just holding you by the same standard you hold others by……

    My experiences are, that christians I do not follow their teachings forsake me. I do not want to get taught from a church doctrine, I want to get teach by the word of God, the scripture. To talk about it to share and read the scripture together. I do not want to feel sadness and putting down when I have a conversation, because this should not be in a family of God. I always thought and trusted christians, because we are in the same family of God, being kind to each other, and give love, hope to each other. I was in several forum and I was attacked. I prayed to God to show me my mistakes. I stayed gentle and when I was impolite, because I wanted to stand up before me, I felt to ask for forgiveness that I was impolite. Believe me, the one who was impolite to me did not apologize. Now tell me what is the difference between an earthly family and a godly family? To me there is no different, they both forsake and are impolite. It is not easy to stay on the path to the Kingdom being on my own. I get the strength reading my bible and praying a lot. When I meet another christian, I am joyful , and I hope we can share our faith even we are not like minded. To respect each other this I miss a lot. If I am not like minded he/ she stops the conversation.

    Jas, what does it mean where is the beef? An Atheist and people of other Religion can’t have the holy Spirit, because one get the holy Spirit to follow our Lord Jesus Christ, to believe in God. To put our will under the cross.

    Because God let the rain come upon rightenous and unrightenous does not say, that every human on the world gets the holy Spirit.

    It takes our whole life to follow Jesus to ask for changing our being to get closer to the being of our Lord Jesus Christ. We could start in this forum to show the fruits of the holy Spirit.

    This commandment Jesus has given to us…John 13:34.. A new Commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another …. John13: 35 By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for each other.

    Sheryl, to be real and truthful, why can’t it be kindness and love instead provovation.Jesus spoke to us, that we should not be afraid what comes into our mouth, but… Matthew 15:18…But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man.
    To think about how I am speaking and what I am speaking, I asked for the guide of the holy Spirit, because this I have to learn my whole life. In the Kingdom of God we are soft, kind and loving. Do you think this comes like a switch of God’s finger, that we like this. I believe we get trained from God in this life, and we fail and start again with the help of God and other follower of Jesus from the godly family. This is what I believe and pray for. If one is kind he/she gets kicked, if one provokes he/ she gets a kiss ( and people are humble befor them) Why ?

    God bless.

  181. on 23 Jun 2013 at 3:33 amSheryl

    Gigi, With all love and compassion in my heart I try to tell my family and friends the truth I have found in God’s word…namely that the trinity is false doctrine and goes against what Jesus preached. However, the fact that I am asking them to reconsider their tightly held tradition and read the bible with an open mind and heart is naturally going to challenge their belief system. I know this because I only came to the truth when I was provoked to read the bible to try to find where Jesus claims to be The Father God Almighty, and find where the bible says we go to heaven when we die. I fought against believing such so-called heresy, but I wanted above all to know the truth. So I did look in the bible to prove my challenger wrong…and lo and behold I found that I really was the one in error. But it took a gentle and caring challenge and provocation to make me open my mind and heart to God’s truth.

    Yes, I fully agree that we are in training now for God’s coming kingdom. But we still are fighting against a devil who roams the earth looking for who he can devour. We still fight powers and principalities. We have to put on spiritual armor. Not to attack, but to protect us from the attacker. Because when we challenge such deeply ingrained trinitarian doctrine we are going to be met with resistance…..that’s the only provocation I mean to employ. And it can be done with gentleness and love.

  182. on 23 Jun 2013 at 11:12 amJas

    Gigi
    My beliefs are not capable of condemning because it would condemn myself. I make no claims that I have achieved anything greater than the 6 billion other loving people on this earth or the billions that died. This is what is meant by Grace but there is more in the bible than Grace. There are Covenants in which rewards were promised for those that entered it and maintained it using the prescriptions set out in the Adamic,Abrahamic,Aaronic Covenants which allowed for an animals death to take their place. This prescription which was given because of transgressions was superceded by a Perfect Sacrifice offered by a Perfect High Priest to Mediate . This is a unconditional covenant of mercy to those that choose to enter a Covenant with the Creator which is conditional upon freewill to enter but does not effect the ultimate salvation of being found worthy of eternal life at the final judgement of the Great White Throne.
    Where is the beef is where is the great deeds that exceed all other religions and unbelievers. It was very recognizable in the 1st century church

  183. on 23 Jun 2013 at 11:15 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – I agree with everything you stated in your last post. My question to you is, can one be a Trinitarian and be ‘saved’? I strongly believe that is a ‘yes’. I get from you and Xavier that it is ‘no’.

  184. on 23 Jun 2013 at 11:46 amGigi

    Tim, I can’t remember I told you a ” NO”, because I can’t tell this to you. My girlfriend believes in the trinity and she believes that God died on the cross, and she thinks I am lost because I believe in the ONE God.

    I see how much she adores her pastor and other teachers, and her eyes finds verses in the scripture that tells her the trinity, what the pastor and other Teacher taught her.

    She loves Jesus with all her heart and she stand before the trinity, because she believe this is the truth. She is reading the bible with blind eyes, because she trust her pastor and so she can’t find the truth even God want to give it to her. I believe God sees her heart, and sees her love to His Son. We do not know how God acts, because Isaiah 55 :8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts,Nor are your ways My ways, declares the Lord.

    On the other hand we read in the scripture John 17:3 This is eternal life, that they may know You the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have send….We can trust God, what He say is the truth, I know also that God is given grace and mercy to people too.

    Sheryl, everything without love is nothing, and I know we are all different, I do not need to get provoke or attack.I always wants to know the truth, I am curious and I want to find the truth, so I dig deeper in my bible, and then I need someone I can share it with that I am on the right path. We all are different. We know that satan runs around and want to destroy believers, families, that’s why we have to become closer and stay with Jesus commandment and shut our mouth from evil words.

    Jas, now we live under the grace of God and the commandment of Jesus Christ. If everybody is loving and kind in this world, not attack each other, not forsake because one does not have the same opinion. The hardest commanment to fulfill is.. to love our enemy… it is very easy to love someone who loves me, it is hard to love someone who kick me out of his life or do not want to talk to me anymore without telling the reason. If we are doing mistakes we should be open enough to tell this, and then begin new, as Jesus say… forgive 70 x 7, this means always.

    God bless

  185. on 23 Jun 2013 at 12:02 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – if you are not convinced that Trinitarians are not saved, then I don’t think we have a disagreement there. Perhaps the next step is understanding what Jesus meant in Jn 17:3? Does knowing God include understanding he is a Unitarian God or a Trinitarian God?

    My argument has been that is not what is meant by ‘knowing God’. My argument is that knowing God comes from receiving the holy spirit and anyone that has had that happen is certainly a member of the true church and someone I would call brother/sister. Whether or not they believe in the trinity – I don’t see how that really makes any difference as to how one lives out their faith.

    What is it that being Unitarian gives you that a Trinitarian is missing out on? (less mental confusion would be the only thing I can think of)

  186. on 23 Jun 2013 at 12:41 pmJas

    Gigi
    Since Adam all mankind has lived under Grace of God. When Cain and Able offered sacrifices it was accepted by Grace as was every sacrifice mentioned through Genesis . When the Israelites broke the Covenant Relationship they Just entered Moses pleaded with God for Grace and Aaron stood up and offered to mediate the relationship and there came the prescriptions for sin for the Israelites. It was added because of transgressions to the Words the Covenant relationship was based on and a priesthood covenant was made with Aaron and his offspring but this covenant was faulty because it provided a continual renewal every year therefore not promoting sinless behavior. This Priesthood Covenant was superceeded with a better Priesthood Covenant that offered a better sacrifice that only needed to be once and was made available to all that chose a Covenant Relationship with God and also came with a better teacher than relying upon a man to teach them the application of the Words of the Commandments that the Covenant relationship was based on. This Gospel was preached long before Jesus. Jesus’ sacrifice also wiped clean the slate of All mankind of Adam’s sin which caused mankind to not be able to be in the presence of God which is required for final judgement of the Great(justified) and the Small(unjustified).
    What you might be doing is mixing Grace with a Covenant relationship which requires obedience giving the requirements your own twist. Grace is Grace and is freely given to those that want it at Judgement and is not dependent upon knowledge or obedience .

  187. on 23 Jun 2013 at 2:42 pmGigi

    Tim, I really can’t answer your question. The scripture is given to you the answers. God knows who He is, He is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is the only One God there are no other god’s.

    What for a question Tim, you should be careful how you talk about God. The Trinity is from mankind and to me it is to send people into the wrong direction. satan is clever and he wants to pull people away from God, he is NOT clever enough. Look Sheryl was reading her bible and understand the trinity is wrong, I did the same and many christians did too and they all came to the point, that the trinity the church were teaching them is wrong.

    Tim, I am giving you an example… you are married to your wife Susan, and you give your neighbor Helen, Ruth and Rita every day flowers and you adore them, and you say to your wife Susan I show you my love through those 3 women because they are looking like you ,because they have the same blond hair and green eyes like you have, and they are adorable like you are. They are three in one Susan.

    What do you think your wife would tell to you? I think this is the same with God, the trinitarian do not worship the One God, they worship another god.
    We never know how God is reacting, I believe everybody has time to go away from the trinity, every christian has to read the scripture and not follow their Pastor blind.

    Jas, your explaining is too high for me, we have to love His Son and God the Father, we have to do what Jesus spoke to Nicodemus John 3:5 Jesus answered,” Truly, truly I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

    I do not have a covenant relationship, I have a relationship with our heavenly Fether through our Lord Jesus Christ. If we love our God and His Son , then we are obedient.John 3:36 He who believes in the Son has eternal life, but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of abides on him.

    Jas, we are under the era of grace.

    God bless.

  188. on 23 Jun 2013 at 7:24 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Gigi – I think a Trinitarian would say that your analogy is incorrect because the three women are each in themselves ‘Susan’. (yes, I agree that makes no sense)

    I don’t know if it is fruitful to go any further. I think I understand your position. I am not sure if you really understand mine, but perhaps another day there will be a way I can explain it better.

    Peace

  189. on 23 Jun 2013 at 7:51 pmJas

    Gigi
    A covenant relationship with God is what defines Israel but if Grace is your choice then you met All requirements at Birth. If you have the HS so does the 6 billion + that love their neighbor . Maybe Trinitarians are deceived more than you but deceived is deceived so they are equals. So please do not exalt yourself over trinitarians because many are my family and friends . Oh I know you claim you dont exalt yourself but your words dispute that claim.

  190. on 24 Jun 2013 at 5:10 amGigi

    Jas, Tim, everything I am telling to you is not from me, so look into the scripture and there is no trinity. How can we worship a triune god, and there is only One God and His Son. 90% of my friends and family are trinitarian and I do not forsake them. I spoke to them about it and when they want to stay with their believe it is ok for me, that does not mean I do not want them as my friends anymore. Grace is God’s choice given to gentiles.

    This trinity doctrine comes from the catholic church, and I think everybody knows this. How can you worship a triune god, and say it does not matter, Jesus spoke..

    Mark 12:29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.

    We can overlook this, and stay away from the spoken word of Jesus. I believe it is better to believe our Lord Jesus what He spoke about God is ONE.

    I follow you Tim, you meant, that it is unimportant to worship a triune god or a One God, our heart should love God and His Son.

    This can only God answer to you, and I believe He did this in the scripture.

    God bless.

  191. on 24 Jun 2013 at 8:20 amJas

    Gigi
    I dont see the concept of the trinity anywhere either but I also do not see the type of monotheism you judge by. We have been one on the falsehood of trinity.

  192. on 24 Jun 2013 at 10:22 amGigi

    Jas, Trinity, Monotheism these are words of a doctrine.

    The words of Jesus in Mark 12:29 these are important. nothing else.

    I wished I had a group I can do what we should do, when we are followers of Jesus….Eph.5 :19, Col.3:16.

    I really do not like the provocation teachings. I love to hear and read the word of God to get lift up and to lift up others too.

    God bless.

  193. on 24 Jun 2013 at 11:45 amJas

    Gigi
    You are at a place where you can do what you should do. I do not represent this blog and also do not judge you by your beliefs. I do however have a problem with you claiming the HS but doubting trinitarians could possibly have it.
    Actually Mark 12:29 are the words of Moses repeated and can be translated and interpreted a few different ways and is not an absolute proof text for your belief but I do agree it seriously compromises the concept of the Trinity especially when combined with the many other verses that dispute it.
    Btw I do not claim or desire to be a teacher but I will share what I see and welcome questions and challenges . I am just seeking the best understanding if it is provable .

  194. on 24 Jun 2013 at 12:40 pmGigi

    Jas, you overlook something. I am not writing here my believe, that I believe in the ONE God is not my teaching here in this blog.

    I am writing what the bible tells you. When Jesus speaks in Mark 12:29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.

    Is this the truth ?

    Look at the old Testament Hosea 13:4 ; Deuteronomy 5:5

    If Jesus is God and the Holy Spirit is God too, then they are other gods, and God is telling everybody I am the only God and Jesus said so too., because Jesus is the Son of God and the holy Spirit is the Spirit of God. I do not tell you my opinion, I try to open your eyes for the scripture where you find all answers, and then we can share them.

    God bless

  195. on 24 Jun 2013 at 12:56 pmJas

    Gigi
    why do you continue to imply that I follow the trinity, I do not find it biblical or does it make sense. Just because I doubt you have the HS and defend others who show as much or more fruit doesnt make me a trinitarian.
    I reject any doctrine that makes Jesus a pre existent god but also reject pure monotheism.
    You do realize that Judaism did and still does believe in a lessor YHWH .

  196. on 24 Jun 2013 at 2:17 pmSarah

    Jas,

    I am concerned by the following comment you made in post #195:

    “Just because I doubt you have the HS and defend others who show as much or more fruit doesnt make me a trinitarian.”

    The second item on the communications policy warns us not to attack someone’s motives or character, and I believe questioning someone’s salvation falls into this category. Please refrain from personal insults so that this blog remains a place where folks feel comfortable engaging in dialog.

    Thanks!

  197. on 24 Jun 2013 at 2:26 pmJas

    post 152

    I doubt a little, that christian who believes in the trinity has got the holy Spirit. The enemy put the trinity lie into the bible and he blinded thousands of Christians, so they worship the enemy with the trinity

    Sarah
    If she can doubt that others do, how is it I cant?
    I dont make a claim to have achieved something she hasnt like she is doing.

  198. on 24 Jun 2013 at 2:56 pmJas

    161 Jas
    Gigi
    I would say discussion about God And Jesus is good between 2 or more people and will be means of finding truth. But to declare you are led by the HS and they are not when their fruit may exceed yours is hypocritical and condemning through exalting yourself. I myself am of the opinion the HS is not at work in Orthodox Christianity because they have been made to believe lies which I include myself plus I dont see any proof in christianity by deeds exceeding other religions or atheist .
    I believe your zeal is driven by love by which you will be judged by and found worthy at final judgement

    ———————————————————————————-
    Sarah
    How am I questioning her salvation when I believe she will receive it

  199. on 24 Jun 2013 at 3:47 pmGigi

    Jas, I really had to laugh what you are talking about, I do not have the holy Spirit.Why do you have to become personal ? I do not what a personal debate about.. do I have the Holy Spirit or not.

    Nobody is without the holy Spirit who confess that Jesus is Lord, and that God is One.

    I do not need you or anybody to tell me that I am save. I know that I now sound very arrogant, but I am not. I am so tired from all these conversation they become personal.

    If I would not have the holy Spirit, Jas, you would not attack me like you do. Thanks , that you are doing this, because you show me how much God loves me and I take it with a smile on my face, because our Lord Jesus was attacked too.
    I always was sad, when people attacked me because of my faith. Today I felt so much joy to come closer to our Lord Jesus.

    I do not have to talk about the fruits in my life to become clapping hands from humans.

    Praise God and His Son Jesus Christ.

    God bless all of you.

  200. on 24 Jun 2013 at 3:59 pmJas

    Gigi
    Where does it state that to have the HS that you have to believe God is one. The trinitarians confess that all the time so why cant they have the HS. Where does it state that confessing Jesus is lord quaranties they have the HS.

    21“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.22“Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’23“And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’

    Sure sounds like these confessed him as lord.

  201. on 24 Jun 2013 at 4:03 pmGigi

    By the way Jas, I did not tell that the trinitarian has no holy Spirit, I told you according to the scripture I doubt it, and I have given examples to you. You want to read what you want to read.

    This is not a fruitful conversation to me. It is more easier to tell me, that I have to go out of this blog , then attacking me.

    God bless

  202. on 24 Jun 2013 at 4:23 pmJas

    Gigi
    I made the same assessment of you according to the scriptures the same way I made an assessment of whether or not I had the HS of which I do not as of yet and may never.
    Again holding someone accountable to their own words is not attacking them.

  203. on 24 Jun 2013 at 5:16 pmGigi

    Jas,where did I not have been accountable with my own words, because I took the scripture to show to you what I meant.

    Something you really forget, that english is not my mother language, and my thoughts are different as yours, and I have to express them in your english. This is a kind of difficult for me. I tried my best.

    God bless

  204. on 24 Jun 2013 at 5:19 pmJas

    Gigi
    Lets move on, maybe it is language issue.

    Hi my name is Jas
    Welcome to the discussion.

  205. on 24 Jun 2013 at 8:07 pmSheryl

    This conversation is interesting … since there is no visible outward sign that one indeed is filled with HS, how do we know? Scripture says we know them by their fruits, and a person filled with HS have one (or more?) of the gifts of the HS. I have spoken in tongues before and I know that is one of the gifts…but I sincerely do not know if it was my own will causing the unintelligible speech (I was strongly encouraged by someone else to do this) or truly HS.

    In my own case I would say when I ask to be filled with HS … I have simple faith that I am…as long as I am not sinning, of course. However I cannot tell if another person is filled with HS. There are plenty of people committing sinful acts that claim to be HS-filled; and there are many un-believers who display wonderful acts of goodness and kindness despite not having HS. Then again….could God’s spirit be working through them because of the goodness of their heart?

  206. on 24 Jun 2013 at 11:52 pmJas

    Sheryl
    There are several signs of the Indwelling of HS but only one being claimed today . My question is if healing is one and God Gives based on needs then how can someone with HS walk through a children’s hospital without healing these sinless little ones. Where are these people today. I really want to believe people have the HS today but if it did exist then it would question my faith in a merciful God.
    So everyone please forgive me if I ask you for proof to your claim.

  207. on 25 Jun 2013 at 2:01 amTim (aka Antioch)

    Jas,

    For me, I have none of the gifts spoken of in 1 Cor 12. What I call the HS was the heart change that occurred to me over a period of about 24 hours about 3 1/2 years ago. I came to understand what repentance was and it suddenly made sense to me that if there was a God (and I always have believed there was), then it makes sense to try to behave the way He would want us to behave.

    I had a couple major behaviors in my life that I was uncomfortable with but I would explain them away. Once the repentance kicked in, I confessed to God that I had been wrong and that my priorities needed to change. Not really even knowing what I was doing, I asked God to give me his spirit and He did.

    For a few months, I woke up each day with such energy and joy and a desire to help others and to be a better father and husband and son. I launched into reading the bible and was voracious about it as it took on a new dimension as my eyes were opened as to what the holy spirit was. I listened to Christian pastors on radio. I asked God for signs frequently that He was with me and within minutes, I would see a sign or a bumper sticker and once even a lighted cross up on a barren hillside. I joined three small groups at church because I was so joyful and was so excited to share this amazing thing with other believers. I sought out the testimony of others and loved sharing mine as well. Everyone had a different story but the heart change – the holy spirit acting within them and transforming them – that has been so consistent.

    I had read Acts as a non-believer a couple years earlier. I thought it was interesting from a historical perspective, but I didn’t get it spiritually. I had no idea what the holy spirit was, maybe I thought it was just some good feelings. In high school, I saw a dozen friends run off to a Christian (Young Life) camp and all came back professing their commitment to Christ. One by one, I saw them fall back into their same old selves. Christians, to me, were just those who manufactured an emotion and those that still clung to their faith were the ones just too stubborn or blind to admit they were fooling themselves. While I think a lot of that still goes on, I know now that there is indeed a deeper level.

    Now, the initial ‘fire’ has worn off, but the change in my heart has been permanent. When I let myself look at someone and try to imagine what they are thinking and feeling, why they are who they are – that is when I still feel the holy spirit in me and that is when I get filled with a sense of love. When I read about how Jesus acted, how he was so compassionate, it still resonates – it convicts me and inspires me to be more loving like he always was.

    I don’t claim to have the level of spirit that the apostles had and I did not have a tongues event where fire alighted on my head (well, symbolically I did but that is another story). However, I can listen to someone speak and watch how they act and based upon the priorities they have in their life, I get a sense of how strong the spirit is acting within them.

    I hope that provides some insight as to what the HS means to me. It distinguishes Christianity from every other religion.

  208. on 25 Jun 2013 at 7:46 amXavier

    The gifted Church today:
    http://youtu.be/AZIumAMOk28

  209. on 25 Jun 2013 at 7:50 amGigi

    Jas, now I am understanding what you are looking for.What does the scripture is telling us ,how can we see if One has the HS ? Can’t we take this as granted?

    I am curious and I ask you.. how can you see on a blog who has the HS and who not. ?

    God bless

  210. on 25 Jun 2013 at 9:12 amJas

    Tim
    Could this feeling just be your conscience which for the most part humanity has learned to suppress. Maybe conscience is derived spiritually but is it the promised comforter and teacher. I see no reason for the gifts or manifestation of the HS to have ceased as long as the need of them exist.
    I believe God gave all mankind a conscience and believe God will judge all mankind by it at final judgement.

    Gigi
    I see the indwelling of HS as a sign of God’s set apart people which can be seen by the nations through deeds and miracles

  211. on 25 Jun 2013 at 9:50 amJas

    Xavier
    The video is just making excuses out of necessity .

  212. on 25 Jun 2013 at 11:11 amGigi

    Jas, I hear you and I agree, but how do you see the holy Spirit in a person you do not know here on this blog?

    God bless

  213. on 25 Jun 2013 at 11:27 amJas

    Gigi
    You cant know for sure but God would not give it without proofs. You said it would be clapping hands for yourself to mention your deeds but is not claiming having the HS also. I see that a child of God would be known by their fruit not by claims . To me this fruit would have to exceed nonbelievers so it could be known or we must recognize we are not the special people we claim we are.

  214. on 25 Jun 2013 at 3:18 pmGigi

    Jas, I know that God has given His holy Spirit to me, and people who knows me in person knows this too. So why should I tell everybody what God is doing through me ,who do not know me.

    To me would it be like I am big headed, and this is not what I want to be, because I am thankful that I am a daughter of our heavenly Father.

    God bless

  215. on 25 Jun 2013 at 3:20 pmXavier

    Jas

    What?

  216. on 25 Jun 2013 at 3:51 pmJas

    Gigi
    Your right I dont know you or your deeds so i will not dispute or take hold of your claim. As for myself I will still continue to seek the HS of what I see in the bible and will not let someone convince me I have already received it which would stop my journey in its footsteps. Satan would love to deceive me into thinking that my own conscience was the HS when in fact all mankind of every religion have it and many exceed me in following it.

    Xavier
    Very simple statement, if you need i could expand on it.

  217. on 25 Jun 2013 at 4:03 pmGigi

    Jas, I do not understand your thoughts, maybe because I do not understand your culture or where you from.

    God bless

  218. on 25 Jun 2013 at 4:07 pmJas

    Gigi
    My culture or where I am from is not the source of my thoughts. My thoughts are the product of intense research and study.

  219. on 25 Jun 2013 at 4:23 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Jas,

    It is more than just conscience. Conscience I have had for as long as I can remember. The HS – what I call that – is different. Paul echoes that in Romans. When the HS comes upon somebody, addictions are cured, nightmares cease, the desire for revenge changes to forgiveness, a more loving, compassionate heart takes hold. Further, there is a bond with others who have also experienced it.

    My big question on this is not IF the HS exists today, but why does it diminish? As you said, there is still the need. What is God doing, after 2000 years that we are still nowhere near having his will done here on earth as it is in heaven?

  220. on 25 Jun 2013 at 4:45 pmJas

    Tim
    Conscience can be suppressed . I myself went from a time in my youth where I was led by my conscience to a time where I could ignore it almost completely to a time where the slightest thing effects my conscience.. Now this is only my opinion but it is also my only explanation.
    Do you not think people of other religions or no religion have had changes of heart like yours?
    I dont believe the need for the gifts or manifestations should ever diminish but again I dont see salvation by Grace being effected by not having it, I believe it is part of being in a Covenant Relationship with God as true Israel of which the reward of entering the land promise to Abraham is the goal.

  221. on 25 Jun 2013 at 4:59 pmGigi

    Jas, could you explain again, what you have study and research ?

    God bless

  222. on 25 Jun 2013 at 5:14 pmJas

    Gigi
    I read everything I can get my eyes on, I have studied almost every verse in the OT ,NT checking the translation of hebrew,greek and aramaic ,Non canonical OT and NT, jewish writings including the talmud ,christian writings, islamic writings, all the church fathers of which I also check the translation, I have studied ancient cultures and philosophies . If it is old I read it if I can get my eyes on it.

  223. on 25 Jun 2013 at 7:06 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Jas,

    If I was the only one to experience something like it, then I would still be searching for what it was that happened. But, Acts2 echoes it and so do so many testimonies that I have heard or read about. Repentance is a common thread – an earnest desire to be right with God and to obey. I did not know that theme was so central to the NT and Jesus’ teaching until I read the NT after my conversion.

    As for other religions, I don’t see them speak of the power of the holy spirit. I’m not informed on that but that is my understanding. On whether a follower of another faith can experience it? I am probably something of a maverick on the idea. Yes, I think it possible that Mormons, Muslims, even Hindus could have an HS transformation, but maybe just do not know enough about Jesus to realize the connection. There is a Hindu man running around India brushing the teeth and clipping the nails of untouchables – I really think he could be infected 🙂 Then there was Cyrus in the OT who had God’s spirit upon him but I don’t read where he converted to Judaism (or even professed Christ).

    Yes, people do have life changing experiences that are seemingly not of the HS. I stopped smoking pot over 20 years ago – quite abruptly and long before I had my conversion experience. There was a marked difference between that and the HS experience. The former was a matter of discipline, the latter was of joy.

  224. on 25 Jun 2013 at 7:36 pmJas

    Tim
    I can honor your belief. Maybe there are different levels of which the bible does not mention but till I know I will not apply it to myself. I would say if the HS is at work today it is through people like you and leave it at that.

  225. on 25 Jun 2013 at 9:15 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Jas,

    I think the bible does reveal levels of the holy spirit. Certainly the apostles had a higher level than the others (the others are not recorded as ever healing people, for example)? When Paul speaks of seeing through the mirror dimly and the deposit of that to come, I take that as a comment that we will one day have an even fuller measure of the spirit.

    The other point that strikes me is that despite all these believers being infected with the holy spirit, Paul and the others still have to write their letters to the churches that had gone astray. If that was happening in the apostolic era with groups that were so close to eyewitness accounts and, arguably, amongst those that received at least an equal if not greater measure than we receive today, is it any wonder we have problems within Christianity still?

  226. on 25 Jun 2013 at 10:24 pmJas

    Tim
    I am not sure we can from silence say the Apostles had a higher level. Stephen was just a disciple but he performed miracles and it is said there is but only one Spirit which is the same for all, now there are many gifts which I see are manifested by needs in the church for ministry. Actually the first giving of the HS happened before Pentecost when Jesus share his gift of HS with the disciples and the 70 in which they healed ,cast out demons and many other wonders to prepare the people there for Jesus’ visit.
    But we agree that it is needed in full forced today as it was in NT. God would not break his promise so either we are in error of whats God’s will is or just flat out deceived by satan

  227. on 26 Jun 2013 at 1:25 amGigi

    Jas, Tim, I am not doubting God in any ways. When something happens as a sad incident, I believe it as a test God is given to me. If I have a joyful incident, then I know it is another test. The sad one, is a test still to believe in God and the joy is not to become a big head. I thank God for both incident in my life.

    When my flesh is sad and angry why things are happen to me I can’t understand. I am looking at the cross and I know how much Jesus has been under the wrath from people, and He is my Lord and Brother. Then I cry and thank God that I am His daughter, that Jesus our Lord took my sin on the cross, and then I have strength again and can move on. I ask every day God for forgiveness and I ask Him that His will is in my life. I try everyday, that my will is under the cross.

    I studied the bible for hours and years ,and I felt that I had an intellectual relationship with God, and I felt bad, that’s why I am reading my bible to talk with God and to learn what He wants me to do or wants me to be. The bible now is my guide for my living.

    I still study and I read articles and listen to sermons to stay informed and not alone with my knowledge. I want to live with the truth, and I prayed for it. I do not want to get taught from christian who put their thoughts into my mind, that’s why I proof everything I hear with my bible. I recret Matthew 28:19, because in the whole bible there is only one declaration to get baptized in the name of the Father, Son and holy Spirit. The Apostle baptized only in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    The catholic church is writing in their katechism that it is from the Roman church, the former pope spoke the same. I do not doubt them. I have read a very good article from a man .. Lon Martin.. according to to the Biblical historian Dr. C. R. Gregory about it.

    I agree with it, and I put on the blog here under Sean’s article about Matthew 28:19.

    I do not ask anymore God” Why”, because God knows what He is doing, and I am living in a world where satan is the ruler. Everybody has a free will to do bad or good.

    I believe , that we can know if we have the holy Spirit, because when we have peace in our heart. I believe too, that the holy Spirit is silent in us, when our flesh is working against the holy Spirit. I believe also if we are getting too intellectual the holy Spirit is silent too. Jesus came to the poor and not very smart people, and they believed in Him as children.

    Who has a lot of trouble to believe ? I guess people who are very smart and getting obeyed from people. Jesus said… in Matthew 18:3 ..and said,” Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.

    We should have faith in our life and not doubt everything. I believe too, that God is given to me in His time schedule through the holy Spirit the truth I have to know, to stay on the path going into the Kingdom of God. I have to be patience and I have to stay faithful before God and His Son Jesus Christ until Jesus our Lord comes back.

    satan does everything to put me down, that I doubt God and believe in lies. I stay with my savior and I pray for strength, that I never let go His hand that hold my hand.
    God bless

  228. on 26 Jun 2013 at 9:13 amJas

    18:1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 18:2 He called a child, had him stand among them, 18:3 and said, “I tell you the truth, 1 unless you turn around and become like little children, 2 you will never 3 enter the kingdom of heaven! 18:4 Whoever then humbles himself like this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 18:5 And whoever welcomes 4 a child like this in my name welcomes me.

    18:6 “But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, 5 it would be better for him to have a huge millstone 6 hung around his neck and to be drowned in the open sea. 7 18:7 Woe to the world because of stumbling blocks! It 8 is necessary that stumbling blocks come, but woe to the person through whom they come. 18:8 If 9 your hand or your foot causes you to sin, 10 cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than to have 11 two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 18:9 And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye than to have 12 two eyes and be thrown into fiery hell. 13

    Gigi
    Lets read this in context. Is this verse speaking of being uneducated or is it speaking of being innocent of sin. All children are sinless till they are old enough to REALLY understand right from wrong which is about 12 years old. I wonder what sin Jesus is speaking of here . Paul states that without the Law there is no sin and he would not know what sin was if the Law did not teach him.

  229. on 26 Jun 2013 at 9:51 amGigi

    Jas, Jesus did not mean uneducated christians, He meant to be a child in your faith. It say we should have faith, look what Jesus said to Thomas…John 20:29.. Jesus said to him,” Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed ( are) they who did not see, and ( yet) believe.(NASB)

    God bless

  230. on 26 Jun 2013 at 10:11 amJas

    Gigi
    Again out of context
    Who are the ones who did not see Jesus yet believed? They are those who entered a Covenant Relationship with God by accepting the Words of the Commandments and maintained the relationship by faith that the prescription for sinning (sacrifice) would be perfected by a perfect sacrifice offered by a perfect priesthood covenant.
    You can not just use verses out of context to justify

  231. on 26 Jun 2013 at 11:44 amSheryl

    Tim, I can relate to a lot of what you said back in your post about your “real” conversion. I went years and years thinking I was a “born again Christian” but when I sincerely prayed for truth and discernment and discovered this monotheist belief…a true biblical belief, I really felt that fire you speak of. It is a daunting experience to try to tell die-hard traditional evangelicals to take another look at their bible and see if maybe they’ve been getting it wrong.

    Jas, funny it seems the more logical and intellectual a person is, the less s/he “feels” the spirit. Do you find that people who are more emotional express more evidence of being filled with HS? I remember a psalm of David when he says he doesn’t think of things too wonderful. Maybe people with more blind faith are more in touch with HS than people who “think too hard.” I hope that makes sense and you are getting what I’m trying to convey.

    I truly believe that as the body of Christ we all have a function and your intellect and capacity to research is just as necessary to the health of the church body as any one who manifests a gift of the spirit. And I do very adamantly believe, and know, that miracles still occur today.

    I think the HS has diminished in these latter days because there are so many people who are deluded. Many are called, but few are chosen….the path is narrow, etc. I hope I have it right and I’m part of the remnant who will reign with Christ in the next age. I hope to finish the race still serving my Lord.

  232. on 26 Jun 2013 at 12:02 pmJas

    Sheryl
    Yes I do see an emotional attachment to the thought of having the HS . I can only give my opinion based on what I see but I do not hold any of my beliefs as an absolute truth and can be persuaded by a better understanding if people present it with proof. Now there are some beliefs that I absolutely know are false but just because my beliefs differ does not make mine the truth.
    But be assured if you present me a diiferent understanding I will test and retest it then give you my opinion whether with you or not.

  233. on 26 Jun 2013 at 3:44 pmGigi

    Jas, I am sorry, but I do not see that I am out of context. I believe you do not understand me, and this is not only a language problem. We are not like minded.

    I will go out of this forum , because it is frustrated if always one knows everything better, and has not a gift to lift me up, rather then to put me down, what ever I say, Be thankful that God made you an intellectual person, and be careful that you do not miss the path.

    bye, bye and may God bless you.

  234. on 26 Jun 2013 at 4:03 pmJas

    Gigi
    Sorry to hear. I was really hoping you would realize we are all equal in the search for the truth but you believe you are already there.
    Btw somehow I have already missed the path but Thanks to God for salvation by Grace

  235. on 27 Jun 2013 at 3:34 pmTim (aka Antioch)

    Jas,

    Good point on the 70 disciples and the healing they did before Pentecost. But, I think the ‘gifts’ are something separate than the holy spirit. The disciples were certainly given a power, but what I am alluding to is the heart change that, for example, caused Peter to go from denying Christ three times to boldly proclaiming him in the temple courts. The ‘charismata’, to me, are not the holy spirit. They may be signs of it, but the spirit for me is an internal ‘attitude’.

    What do you make of John 3:34 – talking about how God gave Jesus the spirit ‘without measure’? More evidence to me that there are levels to the spirit. I wonder if we have any control of it at all? Are there ‘works’ that I can do to increase the spirit within me?

    Sheryl,

    The timing for me of losing the fire coincided with my coming to grips with the trinity. Even though all my logic and common sense pointed to the trinity being false, I have had a hard time not equating the loss of that initial spirit to my dismissal of the trinity. It is helpful for me to hear of folks like you that went the other way with it.

    Gigi,

    I get that you are a loving soul and I’m sorry this has been frustrating for you. I enjoyed your posts – sorry I only responded to the things I disagreed with.

  236. on 27 Jun 2013 at 4:06 pmJas

    Tim
    I understand the gift of HS is different from the gifts of HS , the gift is from God while the gifts are proofs. As far as Jesus receiving the spirit without measure is refering to past receivings of OT and can not be refering to a future comparison. Besides it is said everyone receives the same spirit so unless it is equal in measure it is not the same.I wonder if someone can be led externally by HS just through the Word of God , maybe before the inwelling of Jesus then the first apostles and disciples it was external and with measure based on Faith. Maybe externally is how the disciples and the 70 manifested the gifts prior to pentecost

  237. on 28 Jun 2013 at 5:35 amGigi

    Sheryl, Tim , Jas

    I beg you to read 2.Ti.2:1-13: 2Tim 2:14-26; 2 Tim 3:1-17,

    There we get advices from Paul how we should deal with other followers of Jesus. This is very intersting that in a blog a conversation is always a debate and a fight. Christians gets revile, even they do not know this person. When we know our bible, and we know that God is One and we know His Son Jesus Christ , as Jesus telling us in John 17:3, then we have the truth above all other religion. Only Jesus is resurrected and is alive sittinge next to God’s right hand. No one else. If you believe this, then your faith is the true faith above all other religion. Then to study with Jesus further on, and He will give you more truth all written in the scripture. The holy Spirit reveals it to you if you have a feeling like…this can’t be from Jesus or this is what Jesus taught, because it is only once in the scripture….like Matthew 28:19…., because all the other verses in the scripture are talking about …a baptism in Jesus Name….

    One feels and knows in his heart if one did find the truth, believe me we do not have to read everything the world offers us to believe in Jesus Christ. We only have to read the bible and a Prayer, and Jesus will give to us the truth within His own schedule. We have to be patience, and we have to live our lifes like Jesus spoke it in Matthew 5-7 the sermon on the mountain.

    Jas, I do not have to thank God on this blog where people are fighting against each other for their own oppinion, for His grace.

    It is like you pick the raisin out of a cake, when I am writing something. When you can’t find something in my words, then you put something on top, to show me your smartness….big smile…..

    May God bless

  238. on 28 Jun 2013 at 9:12 amJas

    Gigi
    May God bless you

  239. on 29 Jun 2013 at 1:27 amGigi

    Jas, may God bless you too and fill your heart with love and mercy.

    How much joy could we have with each other to share our faith, to worship God, and give strength to each other with the scripture.

    I am thankful that our Lord Jesus Christ brought me back to our heavenly Father. I wish to you all God’s grace and thank you that I could join you for a while. I did not want to go away with frustration, I want to go away with peace with you Jas.

    Love in Jesus Christ
    Gigi

  

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