By Scott Shifferd, Jr
Many denominational preachers teach a Spirit baptism of being born again before a believer is baptized by water in Jesus' name, and some teach that a believer is saved by the baptism of the Spirit after being baptized in Jesus' name. Most denominations teach 2 or more baptisms. Yet, the Spirit teaches in Scripture that there is one baptism in Ephesians 4:5. By having more than one baptism, leaders are excluding the blessings of the Holy Spirit found in the one baptism. Such a perversion of the baptism that Jesus instituted is misleading many to never to have truly been baptized in Jesus' name and receive the blessings of salvation from God's Spirit (Gal. 1:6-12).
As recognized by all Christians, Jesus Christ instituted and commanded one baptism when He was resurrected. When Jesus was resurrected, He commanded a baptism that had not been instructed before, and this baptism was in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19-20, Mark 16:16). This is the baptism in Jesus' name for the forgiveness of sins that the Apostle Peter taught with all of Christ's Apostles when the Holy Spirit was poured out upon them in Acts 2. Baptism in Jesus' name is the one baptism by which believers receive the Gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38). This baptism is in water, and separate from any baptism of the Spirit (Acts 10:47-48). Throughout Acts, the Apostles taught the one baptism that Jesus commanded (Acts 19:5-6). By this baptism, the believer is sanctified and justified by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:11). Baptism in Jesus' name is the one baptism by which the Spirit adds believers to the Church (1 Cor. 12:13, Acts 2:42, 47).
See, it is by the water and the Spirit that believers are born again and so enter the Kingdom of God (John 3:5). Christians are saved through the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5-6). Regeneration means to be born again, and thus believers are renewed. Christians have been born again through the resurrection by which “baptism now saves you” (1 Pet. 1:3, 3:21). Christians are saved by grace when they were raised with Christ into the newness of life from being buried with Him in baptism (Eph. 2:4-6, Col. 2:12-13). Thereby, the Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in Christians giving life (Rom. 8:11). Being born again, Christians are the sons of God and heirs of God's promise for as many as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ (Gal. 3:27). See, the Spirit is the Truth (1 John 5:6), He has revealed all the Truth to the Apostles (John16:13), and He transforms us by the Truth (2 Cor. 3:18).
While baptism of the Spirit gave miraculous gifts of power to confirm God's Word, the baptism in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit regenerates the believer through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Baptism in Jesus' name is the baptism for which Jesus said, “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16). If we love Christ, then we will keep His commands, or otherwise, we will be condemned to the greatest extent (John 14:23, 1 Cor. 16:22).