SCRIPTURAL FORM OF BAPTISM
1. Mark 1:5 ; Mt. 3:6. Compare "in" (Greek "en")
a. Where did John baptize people? ("...in the river Jordan")
b. If someone said they were baptized in a river, how would one naturally conclude they had been baptized?
(Immersed, sprinkled, poured?)
c. Since one would not need to go to a river to be sprinkled or poured upon, what is the natural conclusion concerning John's consistent choice of such a place? (He baptized by immersion?)
2. Mark. 1:9-10
Most translations either have "into" (Greek "eis") or a footnote so indicating. It is the same word used in vs. Mark 1:12, 21 (twice), 29 translated "into."
a. Which makes sense?
-"Jesus was sprinkled / poured into the Jordan."
-"Jesus was immersed / dipped into the Jordan."
(Greek: "the Jordan" and newer versions translate it that way. )
b. Verse 10: "And straightway coming up out of the water.."
3. John 3:5 (cf. I Jn. 5:6, 8; Heb. 10:22) Note v. 23 & 2:7-9 as to "water".
Would baptism picture a birth ("born of water") if there were only so little as to moisten the top of the head???
4. John 3:23
a. Why did John choose Aenon as a place to baptize?
b. Would sprinkling require "much water"?
c. Does not the consistent choice of places with such bodies of water and the fact that baptism was performed in them indicate they immersed?
5. Ac. 8:36-39
a. Where does it say that Philip baptized the Eunuch?
b. Which form of baptism would require this?
c. Do those who sprinkle today have the person go into the water?
6. Romans 6:4, 5 Col. 2:12
a. How much water would be required in order for a person to be "buried in baptism?
b. How completely would we need to be entombed in baptism in order for it to be a "likeness" of the death of Christ? (cf. Mt. 27:57-60, 66; 28:2)
c. In what form of baptism would we "raised up" as a picture of Christ's resurrection?
(cf. Eph. 2:5, 6 Rom. 6:4 Col. 2:12; 3:1)
7. Hebrews 10:22 (compare "sprinkle" v. 19; 9:13, 14: 12:24; I Pe. 1:2)
a. Which was "sprinkled"--the "body" or the "heart"? Which was "washed"?
b. Is there any place in the New Testament where it ever speaks of those who live under the covenant of Christ (cf. Heb. 9:15-17 8:6-9, 13) as having their "bodies sprinkled"?
c. Compare the scriptures on "sprinkle" given above. What is sprinkled upon our conscience?
d. Could we properly say that the body had been "washed" if only the head werre wet?
8. Look up "Baptistery" in a good Encyclopedia. (World Book is good)
Do you think early Christians would have gone to such trouble and expense to construct large baptisteries if the more convenient and comfortable method, sprinkling, was what they were practicing?
Do churches today build baptisteries in which to sprinkle people? Doesn't it seem that they felt it to be important?
9. Check large Dictionaries and Encyclopedias on "Baptism" and see what they say the origin of the Greek word is and what the oldest form was. Carefully note the difference between the original meaning in Greek (In which the Bible was first written) and modern usage. Also check on how the Greek-speaking church still baptizes.