Posted on 2 Comments

Baptism of the Ethiopian and 4 things we can learn

Baptism by Denomination

Different denominations and religions practice baptism in different ways. Some baptize infants. Others sprinkle. And some dunk. However it’s done, you can be baptized so many times that every tadpole from Florida to California knows your name and date of birth, but if faith and belief in Christ has not occurred – you’re still just as lost as the tadpoles.

However its done, you can be baptized so many times that every tadpole from Florida to California knows your name and date of birth, but if faith and belief in Christ has not occurred – you’re still just as lost as the tadpoles.

The way Baptism goes in our family

I remember the day my niece was baptized. My dad was a pastor and he was delighted to baptize his first grandchild. Sarah was young and all went well — up to the point of it being time to exit the baptistery. She decided to swim out.

When my son was just a little guy of about 4 or 5, on a Sunday morning, we opened the service with baptism and ended the service with partaking of the Lord’s Supper. We’re Baptist so we are of the “dunking” sort of baptizing church. The service begins and the curtain opens and my dad is baptizing a middle aged woman. As soon as my son saw his Papa he said (in his not so quite 4 year old voice) “Momma, why is Papa in that tub with that lady and they have all their clothes on?” There were quite a few snickers coming from those sitting near us. Thankfully, when the pastor is well loved by the congregation, the pastor’s grandkids are always “cute.”

The Baptism of the Ethiopian Eunuch

For the Ethiopian eunuch, he had some real questions about the gospel message. The Holy Spirit directed Philip to go to Gaza. When he was there he saw the Ethiopian sitting in his chariot and he was reading a scroll from the book of Isaiah. Philip caught up with him and asked him if he understood what he was reading. The Ethiopian invited Philip up into the chariot with him and Philip, starting with where the Ethiopian was reading, began preaching Jesus to him. As they approached a body of water, the Ethiopian wanted to know what hindered him from being baptized. Philip told him that if he believed on Jesus with all his heart, than he could be. The Ethiopian replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”

This is the only requirement for baptism and from the Ethiopian’s baptism, we can learn several things:

4 things we can learn from the Ethiopian’s Baptism

1. The only requirement Philip gave the Ethiopian is that before baptism, we must believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

Baptism can’t save you or get you to heaven. It isn’t your “entrance ticket.” Philip gave only one requirement to the Ethiopian: he must believe that Jesus is Christ. He did not give any other requirements. Salvation is a free gift and the only way to accept that gift is by reaching out with the hand of faith and accepting the gift. The minute we try to add anything else to it, then it ceases to be a gift and we’ve had to do something to earn it. Romans 6:23 says: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” So if we attach baptism as a requirement for salvation, then we have attempted to earn what God has provided as a gift.

2. The Ethiopian’s Baptism was by immersion.

In verse 38 of Acts 8, we find that Philip and the Ethiopian left the chariot and went down into the water, baptized the Ethiopian and then came back up out of the water indicating the disciples practiced immersion. The symbolism behind an immersion baptism is that when the person is placed under the water, it is the image of the sinful person dying and being buried. When he is raised back up out of the water, it is the image of being “born again” as a child of God and raised to everlasting life. It is an outward expression of the decision the person has already made within their spirit when they professed Jesus as Lord.

3. Infant baptism does not meet the 1st requirement.

If the only requirement for baptism is belief that Jesus is the Son of God, an infant is too young to make that decision for their self. You will find no place in the Bible where an infant was baptized. However, prior to an age or mental understanding of what sin is and who Jesus is, a child is not held accountable for their sins and should they die, they do go to heaven. In 2 Samuel, when David’s infant son dies, David says that he will go to be with his son, but his son will never return to him. We know that David was “a man after God’s own heart” and that he constantly sought God with all His heart. So if David expected to go to his son, then David understand that his infant son was in heaven.

4. The Ethiopian’s baptism occurred immediately after professing faith in Christ.

The Ethiopian didn’t wait a single minute. Not the next Sunday or a few years later. As soon as he pronounced his faith and belief in Jesus, he was baptized. We need to have the same sense of urgency – not because if we die without being baptized we won’t go to heaven – but because of two reasons. First, Jesus was baptized. In fact, Jesus walked about 40 miles to the Jordan River where John was baptizing. If He walked that far, He must have felt baptism was important. The second reason every Christian should be baptized is because Jesus commanded it (Matthew 28:19).

The Symbolism of Baptism

Baptism is a symbol designed by God to identify a person as a disciple of Jesus. Just as a wedding ring is an outward sign that a person is married or a police uniform is an outward sign that a person is in law enforcement. However, it is more than just a symbol.

In the Greek, Baptize is “baptisma” and means “to immerse” or “plunge” or “dunk.” The picture of baptism, then, is that when we accept Jesus as our Savior, we are spiritually baptized or immersed into Christ. In Galatians 3:26-27 it says, “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many as you were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” Notice we do not become sons (or daughters) of God through baptism, but through faith in Jesus.

Baptism is also a sign that we’ve ben baptisted into the Body of Christ, or the church. 1 Corinthians 12:13 tells us, “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body — whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free — and ahve all ben make to drink into one Spirit.”

Lastly, baptism is a symbol of the inner cleansing of our souls. Ephesians 5:25-26 and Hebrews 10:22 both use the image of water to cleanse us.

What does baptism mean to you?

Are you depending on your baptism to get you to heaven? Do too many tadpoles know you personally? If so, you should consider what Philip told the Ethiopian. It is belief in Christ as the Son of God that provides eternal life – not baptism.

Have you followed your decision to believe in Christ with baptism? If you’ve not been baptized, talk to your pastor. If you were baptized before making the decision for yourself to believe in Christ, would you consider being re-baptized as an outward sign of in inward decision to profess Christ as your Savior?

click here to listen to our daily devotions on Spotify and be sure to follow us.

Make a one-time donation

Make a monthly donation

Make a yearly donation

Choose an amount


Or enter a custom amount


Your contribution is appreciated and will help us grow and expand our ministry. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

Your contribution is appreciated.

Your contribution is appreciated.

DonateDonate monthlyDonate yearly

Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.

[Download not found]

Download our Free 2021 Bible Memory Verse Plan

We’ve put together 52 memory verses for you to hide God’s Word in your heart! You can download the full document for free and then print a new verse each week and as many copies as you’d like. Each verse prints four times on a page so that you can then cut them into index size cards and place them in prominent places where you will see them frequently throughout the day to help you remember to memorize them. Just because you visited our site, they’re yours for free! Download today.

[Download not found]
Bible Reading Plan Download

Download our Free 2021 Daily Bible Reading Plan

With just 30-40 minutes per day, you can read the entire Bible in one year. The One-Year Bible Reading Plan consists of both Old Testament and New Testament readings for each day of the year. The Bible is God’s personal Word to you. What is He saying to you today? Open your Bible and find out!

[Download not found]

Download our Free Self-Care Wheel

The Self-Care Wheel provides ideas for practicing self-care in six dimensions of yourself: Spiritual, Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, Sensory, and Social. NOTE: You will need 11X14 paper to print the wheel.

Want to know more about self-care? Our Self-Care blog series targets people who serve in any ministry position and takes a Biblical approach to self-care.

[Download not found]

<<<NEW>>> In the Spreadshop Store:

Psalm 103:12

The psalmist reminds us that when our sins are forgiven, God removes them from us as far as the east is from the west.

Prayer Warrior

The slide show below highlights some of our favorite Christian Tees designs available in our Spreadshop and Teespring stores.

  • Revive Us Again, Lord

Canvas art and posters are available in the Teespring store. Many of our Christian Tees are also available at Teespring.

To see the collection of Canvas and Poster Prints

Need some music to get you through the day? Check out one of our Playlists on YouTube

Click here for the Contemporary Christian Playlist
Click here for the Southern Gospel Playlist
Or Click here for the Hymns Playlist

You can also watch our animated devotionals on the YouTube Channel

God, Love and Marshmallow Wars by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love and Marshmallow Wars?

God, Love and Marshmallow Wars is a book that includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on.
  • Conversation Starters.
  • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages.
  • Romance Builders.
  • Relationship Builders.
  • Personal reflections.
  • Date ideas.
  • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples.

Available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

WestBow Press logo

Bible Studies, Bibles, Books & More

Christianbook Distributors logo
Everything Christian for less!

Looking for a Bible Study, Bible, book or Christian gift? We are an affiliate with Christianbook Distributors and receive an 8% commission on any item purchased through one of our links. However, the commission never increases your cost of any item. View some of our favorite items by clicking on the logo and thank you for supporting our ministry.

Christianbook Distributors Search:

Wellspring Christian Ministries receives an 8% commission on any purchased made from Christian Book Distributors through any affiliate link on this site. Your price for any item is the same as purchasing from CBD directly.

Here’s some of our recent posts.

A non-profit ministry located in Jacksonville, FL 

Follow us on:

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is FB-logo.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is linked-in-logo-1.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is twitter-bird.jpg
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is instgram-logo.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is pintrest-logo.png