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Church History On Water Baptism Essay

2014 words - 9 pages

Church History on Water Baptism
Introduction
Baptism can be traced back to the Old Testament era during the time when the wanted to identify themselves with the Israelites and become Jews. The word “Baptize” was coined from the Greek work “Bapto” which basically means to immerse down in water and then pull out. Christians have been practicing water baptism since time immemorial as a way of cleansing themselves of sins and getting closer to Jesus Christ. Some churches require that a person must have specific qualifications before one can perform a baptism.
However, in the Old Testament the act wasn’t actually practiced as a way of repenting but rather the Judaists saw it as a cleansing ritual. Such as when someone a person was ill they would be immersed in the water as a way of healing them. Christians have differing beliefs when it comes to water baptism. Some view it simply as symbolic rite of passage in the Christian religion and that there is no significance behind it. Others however view it as a way of purifying a person and hence giving them the right to enter the kingdom of heaven. Baptism is a practice that has always been there since the onset of Christianity as a way through which Christians would seek repentance for their sins and be purifies. After baptism, the Christian would be expected to try and lead a righteous life.

The New Testament Church
Baptism is first introduced in the New Testament through John the Baptist. During his baptism, John the Baptist is fully immersed under water in the River Jordan as a way of repenting and seeking forgiveness for his sins to God. This then later on becomes one of the major reasons for the practice of baptism in Christianity, but however not the sole purpose behind it.
The idea of being baptized for the forgiveness of sins is later on questioned when Jesus Christ is baptized, and as would be the belief of many Christians, he was the son of God hence without sin. Although there may not be specific guide as to why Christians in the New Testament practiced water baptism and their views about the act, there are however some bible quotes that might give insight into the idea of water baptism during this era.
After the arrival of Christ, baptism was no longer done by use of water but rather through by the use of Holy Spirit and the Holy fire. This means that instead of someone being immersed in Holy water, the person was instead immersed in the Holy Spirit. During this era, only through Baptism would one enter the kingdom of god as Jesus would often tell his followers (John 3:5) Christians believed that through baptism one would receive a new life and be washed away of their sins.
Infant baptism wasn’t abhorred during this era and even Christ embraced this idea. In Luke 18:16, Christ states “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” This can be interpretted to mean that Jesus welcomed the idea of children being baptized in...

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