ORIGIN OF A BAPTISMAL TRADITION (2)

"Why," various readers have inquired, "do Churches of Christ emphasize baptism 'for the remission of sins,' as if that were its only biblical meaning?" *** Alexander Campbell wisely saw the need for an objective touch-point, a spiritual milestone, at which the believer could grasp God's promises and claim assurance of heavenly pardon. This he found in the first gospel sermon reported in the Book … [Read more...]

ORIGIN OF A BAPTISMAL TRADITION (1)

"Why," various readers have inquired, "do Churches of Christ emphasize baptism 'for the remission of sins,' as if that were its only biblical meaning?" * * * The New Testament does speak of baptism "for the remission (forgiveness) of sins," of course (Acts 2:38), and Christians of most denominations acknowledge the same each time they recite the Nicene Creed. But the Apostles, evangelists and … [Read more...]

SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES (2)

A gracEmail subscriber writes, "I have trouble keeping up the discipline to read my Bible and to pray daily. I struggle with this, and I always backslide. It makes me think I've never been saved. Sometimes I think that if I just got rebaptized things would get better, but I don't know if that would help. What can you recommend?" * * * Do you have a Bible translation in modern English? If not, I … [Read more...]

SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES (1)

A gracEmail subscriber writes, "I have trouble keeping up the discipline to read my Bible and to pray daily. I struggle with this, and I always backslide. It makes me think I've never been saved. Sometimes I think that if I just got rebaptized things would get better, but I don't know if that would help. What can you recommend?" * * * You speak for almost all of us who, at one time or another in … [Read more...]

WHO CAN BAPTIZE?

A subscriber asks, "Why do some people say that the 'Go' of the Great Commission (Matt. 28:18-20) applies to all Christians, but the command to baptize is only for duly ordained pastors? Does this commission apply to all believers, clergy only, or was it only for the Apostles?" * * * Matthew and Mark both report Jesus commanding the Apostles to carry the gospel to the whole world (Matt. … [Read more...]

WHAT ABOUT REBAPTISM?

A gracEmail reader writes, "I was baptized at age 16 in a Church of Christ. I am now attending a Baptist Church. I am enjoying the fellowship of these good Christians, but have not joined their church because I would have to be rebaptized. I do not think it is necessary for me to do so. I have found no scriptures supporting being rebaptized. Could you please give me your thoughts on … [Read more...]

GOD, NOT FORMULA, THE KEY

A gracEmail reader writes that he has been a Christian for some time but has recently been concerned by a relative's comments. That relative says that his baptism in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is inadequate, and that he should be baptized "in the name of Jesus Christ." He also wonders if he should go to his relative's church, where people prophesy and speak in tongues. Can I offer … [Read more...]

EMERGENCY BAPTISM NO PROBLEM

A visitor to this website writes: "I had a friend who was dying with cancer, who was paralyzed and hooked up to tubes. She had never been baptized but she wanted to be. Given her immobility, a Church of Christ minister baptized her by pouring water over her head. She died shortly afterward. I feel responsible for the baptism and agonize in fear that it wasn't acceptable to God because it was not … [Read more...]

BAPTISM’S MANY MODES

A gracEmail subscriber asks, "Does water baptism in the New Testament involve sprinkling, pouring or immersion?" * * * As New Testament writers describe the process of conversion, they include in the picture all three of the actions that you mention. Jesus himself ordained water baptism as the principal visible expression of faith for the person who believes in him. Indeed, gospel baptism is … [Read more...]