I love doing word studies and often find that after studying the words contained in a verse or passage, I have a much better understanding. Sometimes the study easily clarifies and confirms my beliefs and sometimes I’m made to stop and reconsider. Recently, I ran across an article on Baptism that is one of the better word studies on the word “baptize” and it’s cognates.
In the article, the author concludes: “In case we become all wet in our understanding of baptisms, it is imperative that we consider a few applications. Once a person is identified with Jesus Christ through the baptism of the Holy Spirit, that person is forever in union with Jesus Christ. That union is permanent and cannot be lost, forfeited, broken, undone, or destroyed. It is a work of God the Holy Spirit and He does not make mistakes! Consequently, the believer is eternally secure in the most vital relationship in life. Our eternal security should free us to live lives free from insecurity.
Being identified with Jesus Christ through the baptism of the Holy Spirit means we have a new identity. Thus, Christians who grasp this truth need never have an identity crisis! In addition, this new identification enables one to live a new life apart from God’s wrath (Rom 6:4). This union provides great potential for living.
As we learn from the Corinthian example, believers should place emphasis and value on real baptisms and realize that ritual is only ritual. Hence, ritual should not be given greater weight or significance than it deserves. Christian baptism is not a condition of everlasting life. The sole condition for regeneration is faith in Christ (John 3:16). Christian baptism is an aspect of discipleship. Water baptism is a first step in following Christ (Matt 28:18–20).”
You can read this word study here but then come back and post your thoughts.