Baptism - One, Two or Three?

Baptism - One, Two or Three?
By Richard D. Eutsler, Sr.
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There have been many questions and discussions over the years about Baptism. Some say there is only one. Some say two and others say three. Who is right and who is wrong? Or more importantly WHAT is right and WHAT does God’s Word say on the subject. Everyone has an opinion, and opinions are great for discussing and learning, but who wants to hang their eternal life on someone’s opinion? I do not for one! It is for this reason that I have taken in hand to write on this subject in the hope that it may bring understanding to someone who truly wants to know the truth and receive all that God wants for them.

Let me start with a couple of scriptures.

Mark 16:15-18

15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

In verse Mark16:16 there are two thing required to be saved. One is to believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ. And two is to be baptized. But what is this baptism? This is what all the arguing is all about. What kind of baptism is it that Jesus is talking about? Before I go into that let me show you two more verses.

1 John 5:7-8

7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.

In verse 1 John 5:7, we see that John clearly shows a trinity in God. That there is One God and He is The Father, The Word and The Holy Ghost (Spirit). That together these three are one. Now in verse 1 John 5:8 he shows another trinity. This trinity is Spirit, Water and Blood and together they agree in one. This is the Trinity of Baptism. This is what is meant in Mark 16:16 when Jesus used the word Baptized.

There is a baptism of Blood, Water and Spirit. Together these three baptisms make the one baptism that the Apostle Paul speaks of when he says:

Ephesians 4:4-6

4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Just as God is: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit, so is the baptism of Mark 16 and Ephesians 4, Blood, Water and Holy Spirit.

To get a better understanding let us look at the children of Israel when God brought them out of the land of Egypt by the hand of Moses. If you are not familiar with this story in the Bible you need to go back and read it. (I will not seek to put down all of the scriptures because of space.) First God had Moses give them the Passover Lamb. This Passover Lamb represented the death of Christ on the cross. This was a type and shadow of the Baptism of Blood. By applying the blood to the doorposts and lintels of their homes, the Angel of Death would pass over them. This “passing over” of the death angel was not based on any merit of righteousness or goodness on the part of the person who applied the blood. It was based on Gods Word and their obedience to His Word. Also, it was not limited to the Jews only. ANYONE who applied the blood was spared! Even the Egyptians! This was given that we may know the Power of God’s Love when He sent His own son to die for our sins on the cross. Jesus became OUR Passover Lamb! We apply the blood when we confess our sins and receive Him as our Lord and Savior! Just as the death angel passed over the children of Israel in Egypt, so will the judgment of death pass over us when we die and face God on Judgment day!

Next God had to separate His people from Egypt! He did this by taking them through the Red Sea. Egypt was a type and shadow of the world. God’s people were held in bondage in Egypt and could not serve Him. So we too were held in bondage of the world and could not serve Him. Although He gave us the Passover Lamb just as He did the children of Israel while we were still in the world. He had to separate us from the world so we could learn to serve and follow Him. Our Red Sea is the Baptism of Water. When God brought them out of Egypt, He was not just bringing out a lot of people.

Look at what God said in Exodus 4:22-23.

Exodus 4:22-23

22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn:

23 And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn.

God was not bringing out a bride for Himself but a SON! (See my teaching on the Church, the Body of Christ.) A son to serve Him and to Glorify Him. He redeemed this son with the blood of the Passover Lamb, just as He redeems us with the blood of Jesus Christ our Passover Lamb. But He had to separate this son from Egypt. We too have to be separated from the world. This is done by faith with the baptism of water. Look at how Paul describes the baptism of water:

Romans 6:3-5

3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

4 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.

5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

By the baptism of water we by faith, die with Christ. That is this mortal body is reckoned to be dead. We, by faith, live in Him until the new man receives his new body in the resurrection of the dead. Now just as those who came out of Egypt died in the desert because they could not learn to trust God, so the old man in us dies in this life, because he cannot trust God or please Him. It was the “second son” or the second generation that came out of Egypt into the promised land. This “second son” represents our new man that is born in us when we except Jesus Christ into our hearts. This baptism of water is our hope in that by this we know that in faith we are in Jesus even as He is in us.

Then God brought the Children of Israel out of the desert into the promised land. To do this He had to take them across the River Jordan. Here God parted the waters, just as He did the Red Sea. This was a type and shadow of The Baptism of The Holy Spirit. It was not until they crossed the River Jordan that they walked in the supernatural power of God. This was demonstrated by the walls of Jericho falling down at their shout! It is this Baptism of The Holy Spirit that gives the believer to do that part in Mark 16 starting with verse 17 and 18. It is the Holy Spirit that gives the believer the ability to speak in other tongues. (Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.) This was not water that fell on them. It was The Holy Spirit that fell on them and filled them with His Power! This baptism took the timid Peter who denied Jesus to a slave girl and changed him into the Bold Apostle that stood before the rulers of Israel and Preached Jesus Christ and Him Crucified!

Let me show you one more Scripture reference.

John 3:1-5

1 There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:

2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.

3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

I want you to understand that Jesus was not talking about being saved and going to heaven in these verses! In verse 2, Nicodemus was NOT asking Jesus how to be saved! He was claiming and the other rulers had knowledge of the kingdom of God

In verse John 3:3, Jesus is NOT saying that Nicodemus had to be born again to go to heaven. He said that he (Nicodemus) had to be born again to see, that is to understand, the kingdom of God! Jesus was talking about the baptism of Blood! Before you can learn of the Kingdom of God, and understand His Word, you have to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. This is the Baptism of Blood.

In verse John 3:5, Jesus was talking about the Baptism of Water and the Baptism of The Holy Spirit. Again, He was not talking about “going to heaven”. He was talking about “CROSSING OVER THE RIVER JORDAN”! That is to walk in TOTAL FAITH in Gods Word and to DO the things that He commanded us to do. Look at this verse:

Luke 11:20

20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.

Is Jesus saying here that Heaven came down and they were now in Heaven? NO! The Kingdom of God is a spiritual kingdom. Jesus operated totally in the Kingdom of God by the Spirit! Look at this verse:

John 4:23-24

23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

No one can worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth in this world (flesh). It is only by the Spirit of God that one can worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth. This happens when one receives the Baptism of The Holy Spirit!

There are many more Scriptures on this subject and I will be doing a more in depth study on this subject in the near future but because of space, I have tried to keep this short. If you want more information on walking in The Holy Spirit, you can look at my teaching that I did back in 1974 on our Web page. It is called: Walking in the Spirit Seminar. It was a study outline meant to be used in a teaching seminar.

I hope that this helps anyone who reads it.

Your servant in Christ Jesus,

Richard D. Eutsler, Sr.

Scripture References:  Mark 16:15-18, 1 John 5:7-8, Ephesians 4:4-6, Exodus 4:22-23, Romans 6:3-5, Mark 16:17-18, Acts 2:4, John 3:1-5, Luke 11:20, John 4:23-24