Murfreesboro church of Christ
First Century Christianity in the 21st Century


Self-Study Outline on Baptism (All you need is your Bible)*

I.  Introduction
  A.  If one is unsure of the necessity of baptism he should simply take the New Testament and
       begin to read, starting with Matthew.
  B.  “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God” (Rom. 10:17).
  C.  The search is simple.
  D.  Imagine that you have never heard the word baptism as you begin to search the New

II.  References to baptism in the book of Matthew
  A.  We first find the word in Matthew chapter three.
  B.  We find that baptism occurred in water.
  C.  We find that Jesus Himself was baptized and that he “went up straighway out of the water”
       (Matt. 3:16).
  D.  At this point, we do not know what baptism was, but simply that there was an act called
  E.  From Matthew chapter three, we learn that John baptized; it was in the Jordan River; that it
       involved water, but we do not know in what way he used it; and we learn that Christ came up
       out of the water, showing that He had been down in it.
  F.  We turn page after page in Matthew, and do not read of baptism again until the last chapter
       (Matt. 28:19).
    1.  There it says that those who were taught were to be baptized in the name of the Father, Son,
         and Holy Ghost (Matt. 28:19).
    2.  We also learn that this command is to be applied universally (Matt. 28:20).

III.  The book of Mark
  A.  Mark 1:4 says. “John did baptize... and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of
  B.  Since it was a baptism of repentance, repentance must be a very serious matter.
  C.  Verse five says it was in the river of Jordan.
  D.  Verse eight says that John baptized with water.
  E.  Verse nine says that Jesus of Nazareth was baptized of John in Jordan.
  F.   We go all the way to the last chapter of Mark before we learn anything else about baptism.
    1.  Mark 16:15-16- “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to
         every creature, He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not
         shall be damned.”
    2.  Now an additional thought is connected to baptism- belief.
    3.  Still we don’t know about the act itself.

IV.  The book of Luke
  A.  In Luke 3:3, we read again of the word- baptism, and also that it was one of repentance.
  B.  We can read through the rest of Luke and find no additional references to baptism.

V.  The book of John
  A.  In chapter three of John in verses 22 and 23, we find the word again and John is baptizing in
       Aenon because there was much water there.
    1.  Much water, in and of itself is a specific reference.
    2.  A gallon is much compared to an ounce. A barrel full is much compared to a gallon. A river
         is much compared to a barrel and so on…
  B.  A form of the word baptism is not used any more throughout the book of John.

VI.  The book of Acts
  A.  In 2:38 we read of Peter telling his audience to “repent and be baptized every one of you in
       the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins.”
  B.  We find the word baptism again in Acts 2:41-  “Then they that gladly received his word were
       baptized, and the same day, there were added unto them about 3,000 souls.”
  C.  In Acts 8, we read of Philip and the eunuch in the chariot.
    1.  We already know that water is the element used.
    2.  We learn that before the confession, the baptizer and the candidate both went down into the
         water, and while they were down in the water, the baptizing was done.
  D.  In Acts 9 we find that Saul was baptized. We find in Acts 10 that Cornelius was baptized. In
       Acts 16 Lydia and her household the jailer and his household were baptized. In Acts 18,
       Crispus and many of the Corinthians were baptized. In Acts 19, some men from Ephesus
       were baptized.

VII.  The book of Romans
  A.  In 6:3, we find two new thoughts- “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into
       Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?”
  B.   Verse four tells us that we rise to walk in newness of life.

VIII.  The book of Colossians
  A.  2:12 tells us that baptism is a burial. This explains that baptism is immersion, a covering.
  B.  Baptism is a watery grave in obedience to the command of Jesus Christ, essential for

*The Murfreesboro church of Christ does not claim originality for the above outline. The exact source cited is unknown at this time and appreciation is given to the originator of the format. Ultimate thanks is given to God for the inspiration of the Scriptures whereby we can know we are following the pattern of the New Testament for salvation (John 8:31-32; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).