I would love to know other peoples thoughts on the list of Scriptures below Could you tell if you see anything in common in these Scriptures?
What conclusion could you draw if any?
Could you send your comments back via the blog at the bottom of this page?
Exodus 29:1-4, 29:18-21, 30:18-20, 30:30, 40:12-13, 40:30-32, Leviticus 8:6, 16:24, Numbers 8:5-7, 8:15, 8:21, 19:7, 2Chronicles 4:6, Nehemiah 13:29-30 Matthew 3:13-16 1Peter 2:9
The only thing these scriptures have in common is ceremonial washing with water, except 1Pet 2:9, which indicates a spiritual washing.
All the ceremonial washing were for one purpose? What was it?
Purification, the washing away of sin
Sorry Julie, that’s not correct.
We have been bought by the blood of Jesus. To purchase is to buy or obtain a possession (God’s own people) with a guarantee (pledge) down payment, a promise obtained through the blood of Jesus.
Acts 20:28, Ephesians 2:13, Ephesians 1:7
It is apparent that before the Levites (the tribe set aside specifically to minister to the LORD) could minister before the LORD, they needed to be washed and cleansed to be purified for service. Without such cleansing, the ‘ministers’ were in great danger of being where they should not be, and their very lives were at great risk. Hence Jesus, when He came to John the Baptist, was seeking to be ceremonially cleansed in order to fulfil His ministry, and indicated that it was necessary for His washing “for thus it is fitting for us (Me) to fulfil all righteousness”.
Then Peter clarifies our new “born again” relationship that we now have with our Heavenly Father as “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people”. Why? So that we “may proclaim the praises of Him who called us out of darkness onto His marvellous light.” (I Peter 2v9)
Hence, as I perceive it, baptism in water is intended to be more than simply a public declaration of our acceptance of Jesus Christ as our LORD. It is fulfilling an Old Testament pattern for the preparation of each of us for ministry unto Him in the Holy Place – for we are chosen to be kings and priests unto Him.
That means that Water Baptism, as with the water baptism of Jesus, is an essential preparation for service unto Him.
And moreover, it is essential if we are to legitimately (and scripturally) proclaim our praises to Him.
I suggest that water baptism following repentance is necessary for “fitting us to fulfil all righteousness.”
I believe there are only two ‘rituals’ that we are commanded to participate in after repentance. One is Water Baptism. The other is Holy Communion, where we by faith identify ourselves with our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Good answer Lynton. “Yes” it is for public demonstration unto service.
You said,”I suggest that water baptism following repentance is necessary for “fitting us to fulfil all righteousness.” Why?
What righteousness are you talking about here?
Is John’s water baptism from the Old Testament?
I have long been mystified about John’s water baptism as I hadn’t seen it as an Old Testament obligation. But John saw it as an important step as a ‘voice crying in the wilderness’. He was very scathing to those who didn’t ‘bear the fruits of repentance’ (Matt 3v7-12) and was direct in telling them that they had no automatic ticket to righteousness. I reckon that baptism is a type from the Old Testament which aligns with three particular events/situations – separation from Egypt (the Red Sea crossing); – entry to the promised land (passing through the Jordan River); – and the cleansing of the priests as set out in the Scriptures above.
How they actually come together into this one ‘baptism unto repentance’ is something of a mystery, but there is no doubt that John was inspired of the Holy Spirit towards conducting the “baptism in water” ceremony.
After the crucifixion, I see that baptism in water not only symbolizes these three things but also has the predominant reason of now being an alignment with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
In essence, the water baptism ceremony for all believers is each believer’s personal testimony to the fact that we are His righteousness through faith in Jesus Christ. (Romans 3 v 20-26; Colossians 1 v 25-27). Hence, Christ in me is the hope of my glory in Him.
So, founded in the Old Testament, but expressed through a simple and direct form by John, water baptism becomes a complete declaration of the finished work of Christ in us by faith.
Jesus said John was the greatest of the Old Testament prophets and Jesus has given us the honour of being greater than John was.
We do not do John’s baptism as part of our act of salvation, we are bought by the blood and only the blood.
Jesus is our example so we need to consider, “why did He get water baptised”? As we know the Israelites performed immersion or submersion in water to establish a ritual purification, called the Mikvah, for specific circumstances as a gift of purity and holiness in accordance with the laws of purification, for emotional, physiological and spiritual healing and finally to consecrate the priests so they could minister to God on behalf of the people.
Let us consider John’s baptism in order to gain a fuller perspective (Matthew 3:13-16). As we have already established, John’s invitation to ritual immersion was nothing new for his Jewish hearers, as the tevilah-cum-mikvah had been part of the rituals of the Law. But John’s baptism was a challenge to the Jews as his baptism was not into the Jewish nation but into God’s Kingdom which was coming close, as referred to in Mark 1:15 and confirmed by Jesus in Luke 21:31.
Luke 16:16 The Law and the Prophets were until John. Since that time the kingdom of God is proclaimed, and everyone is pressing into it. (MKJV)
John’s baptism is the last of the Old Testament type and the final announcement before the coming Christ. John’s baptism is not the first baptism for Christians; salvation is. It was a Rite of Passage to fulfil an act of righteousness, because Jesus said, “…for it is becoming to us to fulfil all righteousness”. This statement made by Jesus was done before the new covenant had been declared so therefore it falls under the Old Covenant. Thus it is important for us to find out which act of righteousness or act of law Jesus was referring to. Most Christian today, do not know the answer to this question.
John was the greatest of the Old Testament prophets, performing a baptism/tevilah of repentance which was a type indicating the new direction that the Messiah, Jesus would move in. That is, the ministry of reconciliation through His blood and the act of repentance which accepts grace from God. Therefore the new believer was not coming into the nation of Israel, but into the Kingdom of God.
John knew that his baptism was a sign to the Jews that the Messiah was coming (Mark 1:15), and that it was a symbolic act showing the need for repentance to enter into God Kingdom. It is closely connected to cleansing of the priest for the purpose of service (John 1; 19-34).
We are righteous because our sins have been washed by the blood. Finished
Jesus’ water baptism was
1 To reveal to all that He belonged to God, being the Christ of prophecy
2 To give a symbolic demonstration of receiving the Holy Spirit
3 To fulfil all righteousness as a priest
Our baptism is to
• Following in obedience Jesus’ example as a symbol of laying our lives down in death and rising to a new, resurrected life.
• To reveal publicly that we belong to God.
• A symbolic demonstration of receiving the Holy Spirit.
• Fulfilling all righteousness and to announce the start of every believer ministry.
Water baptism is not required for the act of salvation