Points about water baptism (immersion):
Baptism, in the name of Jesus, is an outward showing that one has put old ways behind and are dedicating their life to Jesus!
It can be viewed as a washing away of past sinful practices with a view to doing right, according to Jesus’ true teachings. It can be viewed as a restart or rebirth.
It does not guarantee salvation. People can still turn away or go through the act of baptism without truly meaning it.
- Remember the two that were impaled on either side of Jesus (Yeshua)? One truly believed in Jesus and the other didn’t care. Jesus told the one who had faith that he would see him in paradise. He didn’t say anything to the other (Luke 23:39-43 See below). This shows that the heart condition is what is important. It doesn’t mean that someone can do bad things until Jesus arrives or until they are about to die, then ask for forgiveness. Once one learns about the truth of Yahweh and his Son Yeshua (Jesus), what they do with that knowledge will show their heart condition. Will someone use their abilities, their talents, they try to help their neighbors to learn of Yahweh and Yeshua? All it takes is to communicate. It doesn’t take money or a car or even a house. But it does take love of one’s neighbors. In contrast, for someone to have life giving knowledge and intentionally not share it with their neighbors shows they do not have love of neighbor. Hopefully they will change.
Water baptism as practiced in the first century was by immersion to those who could understand the purposes. Baptism of infants or by sprinkling is not found in scripture but is practiced by some today who think it guarantees salvation. But it does not, whether one is an infant or adult.
An interesting passage to help us understand this is when Jesus returns and the separating of the sheep-like ones and the goat-like ones occurs. The goat-like ones most likely are baptized, thinking they have done good enough. But they do not show the needed love. They say they have done things in Jesus’ name but they are discarded. The sheep-like ones on Jesus’ right are accepted because of their good actions. These actions come from their heart, whether they are baptized or not. Actions speak louder than words and show the heart condition.
31 “But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32 Before him all the nations will be gathered, and he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will tell those on his right hand, ‘Come, blessed of my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you took me in. 36 I was naked and you clothed me. I was sick and you visited me. I was in prison and you came to me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? 38 When did we see you as a stranger and take you in, or naked and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and come to you?’
40 “The King will answer them, ‘Most certainly I tell you, because you did it to one of the least of these my brothers,[a] you did it to me.’ 41 Then he will say also to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry, and you didn’t give me food to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me no drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you didn’t take me in; naked, and you didn’t clothe me; sick, and in prison, and you didn’t visit me.’
44 “Then they will also answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and didn’t help you?’
45 “Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Most certainly I tell you, because you didn’t do it to one of the least of these, you didn’t do it to me.’ 46 These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
14 “For it is like a man going into another country, who called his own servants and entrusted his goods to them. 15 To one he gave five talents,[a] to another two, to another one, to each according to his own ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 Immediately he who received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 In the same way, he also who got the two gained another two. 18 But he who received the one talent went away and dug in the earth and hid his lord’s money.
19 “Now after a long time the lord of those servants came, and settled accounts with them. 20 He who received the five talents came and brought another five talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents. Behold, I have gained another five talents in addition to them.’
21 “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
22 “He also who got the two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents. Behold, I have gained another two talents in addition to them.’
23 “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things. I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
24 “He also who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you that you are a hard man, reaping where you didn’t sow, and gathering where you didn’t scatter. 25 I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the earth. Behold, you have what is yours.’
26 “But his lord answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I didn’t sow, and gather where I didn’t scatter. 27 You ought therefore to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received back my own with interest. 28 Take away therefore the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. 29 For to everyone who has will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who doesn’t have, even that which he has will be taken away. 30 Throw out the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
39 One of the criminals who was hanged insulted him, saying, “If you are the Christ, save yourself and us!”
40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Don’t you even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward for our deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 He said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.”
43 Jesus said to him, “Assuredly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”