Baptism by Immersion - Entrance into the Kingdom of God

Jesus commanded his apostles to immerse in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit those who receive their message concerning the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Pope France at Baptismal Site

The last three Popes, John Paul II, Benedict and Francis, as well as countless Arch-Bishops, Bishops and Clergy have visited the Baptismal Site of Jesus 'beyond the Jordan' in the last years. Ever since the erliest times millions have come here to be immersed in that same place where John immersed Jesus and countless other Jews.

There are few sites which are of comparable importance for the worldwide Church than the place where Jesus was baptized.

And it came to pass in those days [that] Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was immersed by John in the Jordan. And as soon as he came up out of the water he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him. And a voice came from [the] heavens, You are my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased. Mk 1,9-11

In the same are where Jesus was immersed, the Israelites had crossed into the Promised Land under the leadership of Joshua. This is also the place where Elijah and Elisha crossed the Jordan River on dry ground, the water splitting before them. And after Elijah was taken up to heaven, Elisha received his mantle and crossed once again the Jordan river on dry ground. Then over seven hundred years later, in the same area where Elijah had been taken up to heaven, John the Baptist began calling the people to repentance and immersing for the forgiveness of sins.

John came immersing in the wilderness and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for [the] forgiveness of sins. And there went out to him all the region of Judea and they of Jerusalem, and were all immersed by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Mk 1,4

Shortly thereafter Jesus and his disciples began immersing and making more disciples than John.

And they came to John, and said to him, Rabbi, he who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you did testify, behold, the same immerses, and everyone is going to him. Joh 3,26
Now as soon as the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and immersed more disciples than John, although Jesus himself did not immerse, but his disciples, he left Judea, and departed again into Galilee. Joh 4,1-3

The Greek word for 'immerse' is 'Baptizo'.  The scriptures in the New Testament referring to someone being baptized always use the Greek verb 'immerse'. The noun 'Baptismah' translates literally as 'immersion' but is usually translated today as 'baptism'. All of these words are derived from the Greek word 'Bapto', meaning 'dip'.

In Mark 7,4 the Gospel mentions that the Jews also immersed. Immersions in a ritual bath took place daily in the Jewish culture ever since Moses.

And from the market, except they immerse (Baptizo), they don't eat. And there is much more which they have received to be kept, baptizing cups and pots, and copper dishes and beds. Mk 7,4

Most translations which substitute the word 'immerse' with baptize use some other word in the verse Mark 7,4, either dip, wash or immerse, for the Jews are not thought of as baptizing. In this scripture it can be seen that the Greek word used for 'baptize' is more accurately translated as 'immerse'.

John the Baptist and Jesus immersed in the same way as the LORD had commanded the Jews long before in the Law of Moses. This was usually done in a stone 'Mikweh', but could also be done in a lake or a river. Unless the unclean person was completely immersed, it would not have been recognized by the priests that he was clean. For that reason a ritual bath perfomed by the Jews must be done in at least forty se'ahs (450 liters) of water to assure 'full immersion'. Here is one of the many instructions given to the Jews concerning immersion.

IF AN UNCLEAN MAN WENT DOWN TO IMMERSE HIMSELF AND IT IS DOUBTFUL WHETHER HE DID IMMERSE HIMSELF OR NOT, OR EVEN IF HE DID IMMERSE HIMSELF, IT IS DOUBTFUL WHETHER THE MIKWEH CONTAINED FORTY SE'AHS OR NOT, OR IF THERE WERE TWO MIKWEHS, ONE CONTAINING FORTY SE'AHS BUT NOT THE OTHER, AND HE IMMERSED HIMSELF IN ONE OF THEM BUT HE DOES NOT KNOW IN WHICH OF THEM HE IMMERSED HIMSELF, IN SUCH A DOUBT HE IS ACCOUNTED UNCLEAN. Mishnah Mikvaoth 2,2

Because we enter the New Covenant through our faith in the Gospel and baptism, it is of great importance that the rite through which we are cleansed of our sins is performed correctly, without any doubt. For in this immersion we receive that for which Jesus sacrificed his life. Just as by the Jews, the person must be totally immersed in the water. The immersion place must be deep enough that the complete body, including the head, the body, the legs and the feet be totally immersed. The proper way to perform this rite is with full imersion three times. As the person immersing speaks out the words 'in the name of the Father' the person is immersed the first time, with the words 'in the name of the Son' the second time and with the words 'in the name of the Holy Spirit' the third time.

 Go therefore, disciple all the nations, immersing them in the name of the Father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit, Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you. And behold, I am with you all the days until the end of the age. Amen. Matt 28,19-20

Just as circumcision is the entrance into the covenant the LORD made with Abraham and his descendants, so is immersion in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit the entrance into the New Covenant which the LORD made through the death and resurrection of Jesus to the inhabitants of all nations. And just as the rite of circumcision may not be changed, but it must be performed as commanded by the LORD, so it is with the rite of immersion. By changing the rite to pouring water or sprinkling for the initiation of those who believe the Gospel, we would be found unfaithful to the command of Jesus to immerse those who believe.

And he said to them, Go into all the world; preach the gospel to all creation. The one believing and being immersed will be saved; but the one not believing will be condemned. Mk 16,15-16

IMirela makes baptismal oath

Mirela makes her baptismal oath at the same place where Jesus himself was baptized

Before being immersed, it is very important that the person is aware of the conditions of the New Covenant. Is the person ready to follow Jesus as a disciple? Does he or she forgive all people their tresspasses? Will the person renounce Satan and sin of every kind as sin is confessed? And most important of all, can the person make the baptismal oath with all their heart? Do they receive Jesus as their Lord?

And as they went on the road, they came to a certain water: and the eunuch said, Behold, here is water; what is preventing me from immersion? And Philip said, If you believe with all your heart, it is allowed. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus the Messiah is the son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he immersed him. Act 8,36-38

Mirela Immersed and out of the water

Mirela is immersed three times, in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Upon a confession of faith and the readiness to repent and live according to the teachings of Jesus, the person is then immersed three times, in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

It is through this immersion, performed as Jesus commanded, that the person receives the forgiveness of sins, just as Peter and Paul testify.

Then Peter said to them, Repent, and be immersed everyone of you in the name of Jesus the Messiah for the forgiveness of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Act 2,38
And now, What are you doing? Arise, be immersed and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord. Act 22,16

Although repentance and faith in the Gospel are required for salvation, it is however through an immersion based on these two requirements that we are saved.

The like figure to which even baptism does also now save us, not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God, by the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah: 1.Petr 3,21
But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit; Tit 3,5

Immerson of Aleen

Alin comes out of the water after being immersed three times.

One of the very special promises of the Father is that he gives the Holy Spirit to those who enter the New Covenant through immersion. The Spirit landed on Jesus as he came up out of the water. The Holy Spirit was given to Jesus by the Father, testified to by the descending of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove.

And Jesus, having been immersed, immediately came up out of the water. And behold, the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon him. And behold, a voice from the heavens said, This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. Matt 3,16-17

John knew that the baptism of Jesus would excel his baptism. For John baptized only in water for the forgiveness of sins, but Jesus would baptize also in the Holy Spirit and fire.

I indeed immerse you with water to repentance, but he coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to bear. He will immerse you in [the] Holy Spirit and fire, Matt 3,11

 By laying hands on those who are immersed, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is granted to those who believe. Many times as someone is immersed they receive visions. It is also not uncommon that the Holy Spirit fall upon the person on the day of their baptism even before they are immersed. Signs such as speaking in other languages or prophecy often accompany the receiving of the Holy Spirit.

When they heard this, they were immersed in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. Act 19,5-6

Alin received a vision of Jesus and the Heavenly Kingdom as he came up out of the water after his first immersion. Similar to Jesus, the Heavens were opened to him.

And Jesus, having been immersed, immediately came up out of the water. And behold, the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon him. And behold, a voice from the heavens said, This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. Matt 3,16-17

Maria Lava Coals

On the day of her baptism, the Holy Spirit fell upon Maria in a similar way as it did on the disciples on Pentecost.

A special miracle happened as Maria was immersed. The water from the baptismal tank overflooded the tank and fire / lava appeared in the water. This sign only lasted about 5 seconds, which however was long enough for two photos to be made where it could be seen. In a similar way tongues of fire appeared on the disciples on Pentecost. About seven hours before her immersion, the Spirit of God fell upon her even without the laying on of hands. For these seven hours she had many visions and was only able to speak in many of the different languages she received, but not in Romanien (her mother tongue) or in German.

Jesus desires for this heavenly fire to burn in his Church just as it did in the first centuries where the Gospel was preached with zeal throughout the earth, signs following.

I came to cast fire into the earth; and what if I have determined even now to kindle it? Lk 12,49

It has been foretold that in the last day there would be a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Dreams, visions and prophecies follow as the Spirit is poured out upon those who believe our message.

And it shall come to pass after this, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the maids in those days will I pour out my spirit. Joel 2,28-29

Just as in the early days, immersions are often a result of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, testified to the fact that on the day of Pentecost three thousand people were immersed.

Raul baptism

Before the baptism of Raul, he experienced with many other children the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Many of the children were crying, others were full of excitement as the Lord Jesus himself came with his Spirit amongst us. Raul himself was blinded because of the brightness of the vision he received as Jesus spoke with him. Both his father and myself were very much afraid, seeing that his eyes themselves had been whitened. Earnestly seeking the Lord that Raul might see again, it was less than 10 minutes that he could was blind.

Petri Immersed

Petri received a vision of Jesus welcoming him into the heavenly kingdom as he came out of the water after his first immersion.

It was never God's intention that people would not have a personal experience in their baptism, but rather that it would be one of the most wonderful experiences of their lives, similar to that of Jesus himself and the disciples of the first century. How far from this is the pouring of water over the forehead of an infant and later forbidding this person such an experience with the argument that he was already baptized.

In Leviticus 3 the LORD spoke to Moses about a salvation offering. One of the ways this sacrifice was celebrated was with a thanksgiving offering, with unleavened bread, fortelling the thankfulness we now have in Communion as we partake in the body and blood of Jesus. And exactly in that moment when where we are filled with thankfullness, we are made holy as we eat of his body and we are forgiven for all sin as we drink his blood.

But the salvation offering can also be celebrated as a voluntarily sacrifice or with a vow. The salvation offering done voluntarily or with a vow serves us today as a shadow of the necessity that a baptism be performed only for those who voluntarily make the vow to follow Jesus as their Lord, just as we are required to make a voluntarily vow in marriage. And just as with communion, as we with great joy are immersed, having given our voluntarily vow to follow Jesus as our Lord, we receive the forgiveness of our sins and are born again as sons of God in the water of our immersion. In great thankfullness we receive that for which Jesus died and was resurrected and having entered into the eternal covenant, we now are invited to the inner part of his sanctuary, where we may eat of his flesh and drink of his blood.

Accordingly those truly with pleasure receiving fully his word were immersed: and as it was, three thousand souls were added that same day. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' teaching and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. Act 2,41-42

Michaela Immersion

As Michaela is immersed, she is clothed with the Messiah Jesus.

Sometimes the person being immersed receives visions, at other times those attending an immersion may receive a vision. By the immersion of Michaela Claudia, the younger sister of Mirela, received four consective visions concerning how we through baptism are clothed with the Messiah himself.

For you are all the sons of God by faith in the Messiah Jesus. For as many immersed into the Messiah have put on the Messiah. Gal 3,26-27

In her first three visions Claudia saw different things concerning a white cloth in Heaven. She also saw the Heaven full of blood. And then as Michaela came out of the water, Claudia saw this heavenly cloth descend upon Michaela.

Nobody may partake with Communion who has not yet been Immersed.

Ever since the early church, only those who had been immersed were permitted to celebrate the body and the blood of Jesus in the Eucharist.

We call this food Eucharist; and no one else is permitted to partake of it, except one who believes our teaching to be true and who has been washed in the washing which is for the remission of sins and for regeneration [Baptism], and is thereby living as Christ has enjoined.

Maria, as shown in the picture above, has had many visions and dreams since her baptism. Once as we were celebrating Communion she received a vision and saw the flesh of Jesus on the cross while we were eating the bread. Then as we were drinking the blood, she saw the hands of Jesus nailed to the cross and from his right hand she saw 10 blood drops fall. She then asked me, 'What do these 10 blood drops mean?' I answered, we were 10 people who just now drank from the cup.

Through our immersion we become members of the Body of Christ. Just as on Pentecost when three thousand people were immersed, three thousand souls were added that same day. Peter and the apostles immersed three thousand people into the early church on a single day.

For by one Spirit are we all immersed into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bondservant or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 1.Cor 12,13

Nobody should receive the triune Immerson who is not ready.

Just as it is required that a person first be immersed into the body of Christ before taking communion, so is just as necessary that a person believe the gospel and repent before making the voluntary baptismal vow followed by a triune immersion.

Pope Francis visit to baptismal site

Anyone can be immersed by another person. Even a dog can be immersed three times. It is not the immerson alone which counts. Even by saying 'I immerse you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit' does not automatically bring the forgiveness of sins to the one immersed. If someone does not believe the Gospel, or is not willing to repent, or cannot voluntarily make the baptismal vow, then these are all signs that the person is not yet ready for a triune immersion.

As many as are persuaded and believe that what we teach and say is true, and undertake to be able to live accordingly, are instructed to pray and to entreat God with fasting, for the remission of their sins that are past, we praying and fasting with them. Then they are brought by us where there is water, and are regenerated in the same manner in which we were ourselves regenerated. For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water. For Christ also said, "Except ye be born again, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." Justin First Apology 61,2

Jesus taught that we must be born of the water and the spirit. The working of the spirit moves in the life of many people long before they are actually saved. This can be compared to a pregnancy.

The spirit blows where he wishes, and you hear the sound of him, but do not know from where he comes, and where he goes. So is everyone born of the Spirit. Joh 3,8

Just as meaningless as a woman trying to bear a child without first being pregnant, so is a triune immersion meaningless when perfomed upon someone who is not 'pregnant' with the incorruptible seed; faith in the word of God. Therefore those men who preach the Gospel and baptize need to, as a midwife, discern who is ready to make the baptismal oath. They need to be careful not to immerse people who may very well not keep such a sacred oath.

But they whose office it is, know that baptism is not rashly to be administered.
The Scripture which he was reading falls in opportunely with his faith: Philip, being requested, is taken to sit beside him; the Lord is pointed out; faith lingers not; water needs no waiting for; the work is completed, and the apostle snatched away.
And so, according to the circumstances and disposition, and even age, of each individual, the delay of baptism is preferable; principally, however, in the case of little children. Tertullian Baptism 18

Five youths baptized

Five youths between eleven and seventeen immersed as disciples of Jesus.

Should we not follow the command of Jesus and the Apostles to be immersed?