of all BG, thank you for posting this supportive message from Andrew
Strom re: salvation and baptisms. I don't know who he is and really
doesn't matter; I like what he is preaching/teaching, because it is
scriptural. He is absolutely correct in his interpretation and that new
testament salvation began in the book of Acts. It began on the day of
Pentecost (Acts Chapter 2), some 50+ days after Jesus and the thief
were crucified. It was not delivered in the gospels; the time period of
the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke & John) was still under the old testament
or covenant. Jesus, and John the Baptist, were certainly paving the way
for the new testament covenant, but it did not happen during their
ministry. The thief's salvation had nothing to do with the new
testament plan of salvation, which is stated in Acts 2:38 and yes, it is 3 steps.
Peter, promised by Jesus to receive the keys to heaven in Matthew
16:19, preached Acts 2:38 for salvation in his first sermon after
receiving the Holy Ghost. I can not imagine how the 120± other Holy
Ghost filled people from the upper room, which included all of the
apostles, present at this sermon could or would allow Peter to preach
the wrong message. Nor would our almighty God let something as critical
and important as this be preached incorrectly.
Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Looks like a 3 step process to me, just like the gospel of Christ
was 3 steps. The verse above does not contain the word "or" anywhere in
it, but does include the word "and" twice, which means you have to do
all three of these steps to be saved. We are to obey the gospel, which
is 3 steps. Please note the parallels of death (repentance is a death to sin), burial (water baptism) and resurrection (new creature by Holy Ghost infilling) of Christ.
Now, I would like to address and hopefully clear up any misunderstandings on water baptism with scripture of course.
- Baptism in the name of Jesus Christ vs. the titles (Father, Son, Holy Ghost)
Please note that Matthew, who penned the book of Matthew, was
present at Peter's sermon and did not object to Peter's instruction to
baptize in the name of Jesus. Remember, Matthew is the one who recorded
Jesus' commandment to baptize in the name of Father, Son & Holy
Ghost. I will tell you why he did not object:
It is because the name of the Father, the Son & the Holy Ghost is Jesus!!!
I hope that this is revelation for all and I think it is very
important to understand and how it could clear up the confusion with
the water baptismal formula. To understand the water baptism in Jesus
name, you must understand that Jesus was God in the flesh!
This may be hard to understand for some; it was for me too at first.
But if you read scripture carefully and pray for understanding, you can
receive revelation. The following scriptures hopefully will enlighten
Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us,....
John 1:10 He (Jesus) was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
John 14:9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
Hebrews 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: ......................
There are more scriptures, but I will stop with these. I hope you
are seeing and understanding this principle. You see, God can manifest
himself anyway he likes and he has done this many times throughout the
bible; in a cloudy pillar, atop Mt. Sinai, in a burning bush, as Jesus,
etc, etc. God gave the Holy Spirit to Jesus when he came up from
his water baptism (just like we are to do in our salvation) without
measure, giving him the full power of God. When we get the Holy Ghost,
it is in measure, the earnest of the Spirit. We will get more, much
more, at the rapture when we receive our glorified bodies.
- How is a water baptism to be performed scripturally?
It is to be performed by immersion; completely under water.
How can you wash away your sins with sprinkling or pouring? How can you
accomplish your water burial (Romans 6:4) with sprinkling or pouring?
Complete and total immersion is the only way to accomplish this. Jesus,
John the Baptist, Phillip & the Ethiopian eunuch, the apostles, etc
all did the baptism in bodies of water. If pouring or sprinkling would
have been enough, then all they would have needed was a well, not a
river or a sea. I understand that sprinkling/pouring originated from a
certain denomination in about 300 AD and of course was doctrine of man,
which Jesus warned about during his ministry. This was brought about
because they were baptizing babies and did not want to dunk them. Fair
enough, but babies and young toddlers don't need to be baptized; not
until they are accountable and can repent (1st Step), do they need to
be baptized. Please look at the following scriptures re: water baptisms:
Matthew 3:6 And were baptized of him (John the Baptist) in Jordan (River), confessing their sins.
Matthew 3;16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up staightway out of the water: .................................
John 3:23 And John also was baptizing in AEnon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized.
Acts 8:38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
Acts 22:16 And now why tarriest thou (Saul, later name changed to Paul, the apostle)? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
What I have written above is scriptural; I back up topics like
these with scripture whenever possible. Salvation is not to be taken
lightly; it is to be treated with fear and trembling. You are to be
converted in a 3 step process. Jesus said in Matthew 18:3 unless you
are converted and become as little children (the innocence, purity, etc
of a child before the world gets a hold on them), you will not enter
into heaven. He said in Matthew 5:20 that except your righteousness
shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall
not enter into heaven. These are very serious warnings and can only be
achieved by the conversion process, which is being born again of the water (baptism) and of the Spirit (Holy Ghost infilling). The
only thing I disagree with Andrew Strom on is that he baptizes by
pronouncing the titles and the name of Jesus. I don't believe that it
is a salvation issue to pronounce both, but it is not necessary to
pronounce the titles in addition to the name of Jesus since the name of
the titles is Jesus and I hope I have shown you that through some very
I would like to conclude with this suggestion. Andrew said it and
I agree with him totally on this. Before I discovered the truth about
2.5 years ago and was born again in the name of Jesus, I had been to
other denominations and I don't remember these churches hardly ever
preaching from the book of Acts. This book is probably the most
important book in the bible in terms of our salvation and is perhaps
one of the least read books. This book is the start, it is the
beginning, it is the creation of the new testament church. This book is
filled with many examples of salvation and they all involve repenting
(believing, obeying, surrendering, etc), water baptism in the name of
Jesus and infilling of the Holy Ghost. Please read the book of Acts,
especially Chapters 1 & 2. This is how it all started for us. As
far as I know, we are still under this new testament until the rapture.
I hope you are blessed by this information.