TO REJECT BAPTISM? BY STEVE FINNELL
What message is being broadcast when men reject water baptism outright or the purpose of baptism?
Luke 7:29 And when all the people heard him, even the tax collectors justified God, having been baptized with the baptism of John. (NKJV)
Luke 7:29 When all the people and the tax collectors heard this, they acknowledged God's justice, having been baptized with the baptism of John. (NASB)
Luke 7:29 And all who heard John preach---even the most wicked of them---agreed that God's requirements were right, and they were baptized by him. (The Living Bible ---Paraphrased)
What were the requirements that John was preaching? The requirements were the baptism of repentance for the remission of sin and to believe in Jesus who was to come.(Mark 1:4, Acts 19:4)
The requirements under the New Covenant are to believe in Jesus, repent and be baptized in water. (Acts 2:38, Mark 16:16, Romans 10:9-10)
Do believers in Christ agree that God's requirements under the New Covenant are right, even though the requirements include water baptism? Some do, but others do not.
Luke 7:30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him. (NKVV)
Luke 7:30 But the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected God's purpose for themselves, not having been baptized by John. (NASB)
Luke 7:30 All, that is, except the Pharisees and teachers of Moses.They rejected God's plan for them and refused John's baptism. (The Living Bible --- Paraphrased)
The Pharisees and lawyers rejected God's plan. The evidence was that they rejected, the water baptism, that was administered by John.
Are the believers in Christ who reject God's purpose for water baptism under the New Covenant rejecting the counsel of God? Are they rejecting God's purpose? Are they reject God's plan for themselves?
Take note that the Jews who were baptized by John the Baptist did not say, our baptism was not essential for the remission of sins. They did not say our sins were forgiven the minute we repented and then we were immersed in water as a testimony of our faith. They did not say the reason we were baptized is so we could join the church of John the Baptist. They did not say that their friends and relatives who had repented, but died before they had time to be baptized still had their sins forgiven. They did not say that baptism was simply an act of obedience, but had nothing to do with the forgiveness of their sins. They did not invent a doctrine "Saved by Repentance Alone," in order to change the purpose of the baptism of John.
Water baptism performed by John the Baptist was in order to receive forgiveness of sin.
Water baptism performed under the New Covenant (Christian Baptism) is in order to have sins forgiven.
REJECTING THE PURPOSE OF WATER BAPTISM IS TANTAMOUNT TO REJECTING WATER BAPTISM!