An unfortunate byproduct of the way we were taught is the assumption that when we read the word baptism in the Bible we think water. This “water assumption” is just part of the reason Christianity is so divided and at odds against each other over baptism. One of the most egregious passages that this assumption happens in is Romans chapter 6. I challenge you to find water anywhere in this passage. You won’t find water because it’s just not there. More importantly, what you lose by forcing water into Romans chapter 6 is the proper understanding of an extremely important doctrine every Christian should know and understand.
Romans 6:3-4 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Did you notice how clearly these verses explain what you are baptized into? This is an identification into Christ’s death, NOT water. The reason you might not agree with this statement is you were never taught that Jesus was baptized TWICE. You’ve probably never been taught this but just read what Jesus said.
Luke 12:50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!
Jesus was baptized twice! Jesus himself calls his death a baptism. So I ask you, which baptism of Jesus would you want to be identified with? His water baptism that had nothing to do with you, or his death baptism that had so much to do with securing your salvation. I realize your denomination teaches you there is water in Romans chapter 6, wouldn’t you rather just let the Bible say what it says and believe it? Can you explain what our Apostle Paul means when he says “I am crucified with Christ” (Gal 2:20) when you force water into this passage? Can you fully comprehend what it means to be dead to sin without a proper understanding of our identification with Christ’s death? Will you properly understand Colossians 2:12 and our being “buried with him in baptism” when you think water? You should know the answer but I’ll say it anyway. You will never understand these and other vastly important things when you force water into baptism passages where there is NO water. Christ’s death was a baptism according to scripture. If your church teaches Romans 6 is a water baptism then if they were honest they would be teaching that water is a REQUIREMENT for salvation because if this is a water baptism then it’s also how you get into Christ! We get into Christ today by the only baptism valid today and the only one Paul tells you matters today, the “One Baptism” of Ephesians 4:5, Galatians 3:27, Romans 6:3-4, I Corinthians 12:13, and Colossians 2:12. I’m sorry this does not fit your tradition but scripture is clear. Water baptism is arguably the most divisive doctrine in Christianity. Rightly dividing the Bible and following your Apostle Paul makes the argument about baptism go away overnight. Why? Because if you were following your bible WATER BAPTISM would go away overnight.
Steve Schoenberger is a student of the Bible and the teacher at Abundant Grace Bible Fellowship, A Mid-Acts Dispensational Bible church teaching the Bible rightly divided according the the revelation of the mystery delivered to the Apostle Paul