FAQ on the Christian Faith
First of all, we should pay attention to the "doctrines of baptisms" as written in Hebrews 6:2. According to the Bible, there are three different baptisms; the baptism of John the Baptist for repentance, the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist, and our baptism. The baptism that we receive is a confession of our faith in believing the baptism of Jesus. That is to say, we are baptized in order to confess that we believe Jesus was baptized to take away all our sins and also died on the Cross to atone them. Now you can understand Matthew 3:15 where it says, "Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness." "Thus" here means that Jesus Himself bore all the sins of the world by being baptized by John the Baptist, the representative of all mankind.
It was a profound plan of God to save us from the inevitable trap of sin. Jehovah laid on Him the iniquity of us all (Isaiah 53:6) and has granted us His righteousness. "Righteousness" here means "dikaiosune" in Greek, which also signifies "fairness and justice." It tells us that Jesus bore the iniquity of all mankind in the most fair and just way by being baptized in the way of the laying on of hands.
We've been saved by our strong faith in the baptism, the death on the Cross, and the resurrection of Jesus. The spiritual circumcision (Romans 2:29), which cut off all our sins from our heart, has washed away the sins in our heart. Therefore, the apostle Peter said to people, "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:38) on the Day of the Pentecost.
All sinners should obtain the forgiveness of sins in their hearts by believing in the name of Jesus. What's the meaning of His name? "He will save His people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21). The name Jesus means the Savior who saves His people from their sins. How did He save us from all our sins? Jesus has saved us from all our sins through His baptism and the death on the Cross.
When the apostles of Jesus Christ preached the gospel, they ensured a clear understanding of the baptism of Jesus and the Cross was taught, then baptized those who believed in them. Accordingly, we're baptized to confess outwardly that we believe in the baptism and the death of Jesus deep in our minds. When we're baptized, we confess "Thank you, Lord. You bore all my sins by baptism and died for me and rose again to save me. I believe it." We are baptized by ministers in water as a symbol of our faith in Jesus' baptism and His death on the Cross, just like the way He was baptized by John Baptist. Thus, the saints in the early church were baptized as a proof for their belief, after they gave heed to the gospel and had redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Baptismal ceremony is not necessarily mandatory, and our water baptism has nothing to do with salvation while it is very important. We could only be saved through believing the gospel of the water and the blood. The Bible tells that we're baptized into Jesus Christ (Romans 6:3, Galatians 3:27). Then, how could we be baptized into Him? It is possible only when we believe in His baptism since the flesh, old man, could be united with Jesus and crucified with Him by His baptism. Consequently, for Jesus bore all our sins by His baptism, His death was the judgment for our iniquities. Therefore, we also died on the Cross with Him and our flesh, the one that sins, died to sin and we have been saved from all our iniquities.
Those who are united with Jesus through His baptism and death can also be united with His Resurrection. His Resurrection is not only our resurrection from the death to sin, but also the one that lets us be born again as a child of God, impersonated pure and sinless in front of God. If we hadn't laid on Him our sins by distrusting His baptism, the Death and Resurrection might have been meaningless, having nothing to do with our salvation. Those who have laid all his/her sins on Him with faith should be unified with His Death on the Cross, and the baptism followed by the being bestowed with salvation and reborn as a righteous person. However, those who haven't laid his/her sins on Him by believing in His baptism have no relationship with His Death and Resurrection whatsoever.
The baptism of the believers is trust worthy just as we find a husband and wife a legal couple through a wedding ceremony. The baptism of the saints is an outward proclamation of such inward belief. When we proclaim our belief in His baptism and the Cross in front of God, saints, and the world our belief becomes more immutable. Having misunderstood the true meaning of the baptism that Jesus has received by John Baptist, we should not believe that we could be saved even though we do not believe in His baptism and its significance. It's simply a cunning trick of the devil. We receive remission of sins and then are welcomed to heaven by truly believing in the baptism of Jesus by heart instead of believing in our own baptism.