1) In the book of Acts we have a lot of information concerning the way Christianity works.
2) We see how Christians worshipped, acted in the world, served one another, and preached the gospel.
3) We also find several examples involving people who were baptized.
a) God put these examples in the Bible to tell us how to do things in our day and time.
b) Did people wait for a specific day or time to be baptized
c) Did they go to a particular (special location) for baptism?
4) Let’s see when people were baptized; our study begins in the second chapter of Acts.
a) Acts 2:1 gives us a time frame; it was the “Day of Pentecost.”
b) This was a couple of months after Jesus’ resurrection.
c) It was not “Easter” as many are celebrating today. Neither was it another “Christian holiday.”
d) Passover was a Jewish holiday. We will read from verse 29 to verse 36 – READ
e) When those in this audience heard these words they were frightened – verse 37 – READ
f) In verse 38 Peter told these men and women to “repent and be baptized.”
5) He could have told them, “wait until a special day and time comes and be baptized.”
6) “You do not need to baptized until the right time comes along.”
7) Peter said nothing of the kind. He realized that baptism is “for the forgiveness of sins.”
8) Without proper baptism, God will not forgive a person of their sins.
9) A little later we find that these people did not delay – verse 41 – READ
10) Luke says “in that day” these people were baptized.
11) This single example stands in contrast to many teachers in our modern religious world.
a) Our next text comes from Acts 8. Simon “believed and was baptized” (Acts 8:13).
b) There was no believing at one time and then waiting for a special day to be baptized.
c) Such was also true for many others at Samaria – Acts 8:12 – READ
12) Notice how verse 12 is constructed: When they believed, then they were baptized.
13) When and then go together. Acts 16:25-33 we find a man who heard the gospel late at night.
14) Luke specifically says this man was baptized about midnight.
15) Rather than wait for a special day, baptism was done immediately after a person believed.
16) In Mk. 16:16 Jesus said, “he that believes and is baptized shall be saved.”
17) There is not much of a time gap in Mk. 16:16; 2 actions are described in this single verse.
18) In the book of Acts we find that these 2 actions did follow one right after the other.
19) If we have been thinking about being baptized, God tells us not to wait.
20) God says that unless we die we cannot live.
21) This is a paradox; a statement that seems contradictory but expresses a great truth.
22) When the Bible says “die to live” it does not mean a literal death.
a) It means death to a particular way of life.
23) We must make a conscious decision to choose God’s will over the devil’s will.
a) Col. 2:13 says sins (trespasses) make us dead (they rob a person of spiritual life with God).
b) Gal. 2:20 speaks of being “crucified with Christ.” This means we say “no” to sin.
c) Paul picks up on this same theme in Rom. 6:1-7. In both places he described repentance.
d) This is not my opinion; it is what God tells us – listen to Gal. 5:24; 6:14; Eph. 4:22; Col. 3:5. 3:5.
e) There he said, “put away your former manner of life” and then he listed several sins.
24) A person cannot be properly baptized until they repent (turn their back on sin).
25) Paul said in Rom. 6:4 we are “buried with Christ.”
26) This same verse says we are “raised with Christ.”
a) Baptism is a burial. Sprinkling is not a burial. Pouring is not a burial.
b) Immersion is a burial, and this is the way God requires baptism to be done.
c) When we go down into the water and are raised up, Rom. 6 says there is a parallel.
d) Our being “raised up” is like Jesus being “raised up” in His resurrection.
Find the truth about God and become a New Testament Christian. Find out more about New Testament Christianity by running some Internet searches for “church of Christ” and “churches of Christ.” You may also want to visit http://www.abiblecommentary.com for Bible study information.
Remember, in order to be saved and enjoy all God’s blessings (not the least of which is salvation), a person must have faith (Jn. 8:24), be willing to repent (Lk. 13:3), and after confessing Christ as Lord, the final step is water baptism (Rom. 6:3; 1 Cor. 12:13; 1 Pet. 3:20-21). Bible baptism is by immersion only (“burial,” Rom. 6:4), and once it is done, heaven puts that person “into Christ” (Gal. 3:27; Rom. 6:3). After proper baptism a person has their sins forgiven (Acts 2:38).