Copyright © 1993 by Lee Woofenden. All Rights Reserved.

Chapter 15

Baptism

202 Baptism was set up as a symbol that we are religious, and as a reminder that we are meant to be reborn. The washing in baptism is spiritual washing, which is rebirth.

203 All rebirth comes from the Lord through the true things in faith, and by living in harmony with them. So baptism demonstrates that we are religious, and that we can be reborn. It is through our religion that we know the Lord, who gives us rebirth, and through religion we have the Bible, where there are true things from faith through which we can be reborn.

204 The Lord taught this in John: "Unless you have been born from both water and spirit, you cannot enter God's realm" (John 3:5). In the spiritual meaning, "water" is the truth in the faith that comes from the Bible, "spirit" is living in harmony wit h it, and "being born" is rebirth from these two things.

205 When we are reborn, we always go through inner struggles, which are spiritual fights against our bad traits and false ideas. So the water in baptism also symbolizes these fights.

206 Since baptism is a symbol and a reminder of these things, we can be baptized as babies. If we are not baptized then, we can also be baptized as adults.

207 If we have been baptized, we should realize that baptism itself does not give either faith or spiritual well-being. It only shows that we should accept faith, and that we will be rescued if we are reborn.

208 So you can see what the Lord means when he says in Mark: "Anyone who believes and is baptized will be set free. Anyone who does not believe will be considered guilty" (Mark 16:16). We believe when we come to know the Lord and accept divine truths from him through the Bible. We are baptized when we are reborn from the Lord by means of these true things.

Chapter 16

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