Baptism: Water & The Holy Spirit

Pastor Steve


Apr 24, 2022

Sermon Notes

Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. And I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and I testify that this is The Son of God.” (John 1:32–34, NIV)

A Purification Rite
The Jewish leadership expected the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet, exclusively, to come baptizing.

Now the Pharisees who had been sent questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” (John 1:24–25, NIV)

The Halakah
… meaning “the path one walks”.

The writings included:
· The Torah
· Rabbinical Teaching
· Revered Traditions

According to the Halakah, the “Mitzvah” was a ritual bath that was used initially for cleansing after a woman’s menstruation (called laws of Ridah). It was all about purity (tumah) and impurity (tahorah).

Baptism came to be recognized as a Jewish Rite of Purification for other things as well. For example…
· someone beginning some new journey in their life would be cleansed in the Mitzvah.
· burial ceremonies
· before weddings
· for conversions

The water must be stationary (not flowing) and have a percentage of water from a natural source like rain, stream, or lake.

John used baptism as a ritual of cleansing.

And so, John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. (Mark 1:4, NIV)

Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.”
(Acts 19:4, NIV)

1. John was sent by Father God (1:32)
2. John fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy by being the voice crying out in the desert (1:23)
3. John baptized in water (the Mitzvah).
4. He baptized and paved the way for the Messiah to come (1:31)
5. God told John how to recognize the baptizer. He gave John the sign.

John saw, recognized, & testified.

In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah: “A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’” (Matthew 3:1–3, NIV)

I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. (Jesus) (Luke 5:32, NIV)

In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents. (Luke 15:10, NIV)

1. Father God revealed to John the sign of the Messiah, the Son of God: You will see the Holy Spirit come down from Heaven and remain on Him.
2. John testified that he didn’t know who it would be until the Water Baptism of Jesus.
3. John testified of what God had said AND that he saw it happen…on Jesus of Nazareth. The Spirit came down from Heaven LIKE a dove and rested on Jesus, the Lamb of God.

I baptize you with water, the Messiah will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.

And this was his message: “After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” (Mark 1:7–8, NIV)

1. Reminder: John’s parents were from the tribe of Levi (the priestly division of Abijah) and Aaron. That would make John from the priestly line. Repentance and Forgiveness would be in his job description.
2. John the Baptist (and Jesus initially) came baptizing in water (Mitzvah) for repentance and forgiveness.
3. Jesus Christ would come baptizing in the Holy Spirit to empower and give counsel.

It is correct to call the empowerment of the Holy Spirit a Baptism.

But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. (John 16:13–14, NIV)

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. (Acts 1:8, NIV)


Everyone starts out a sinner.

… for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… (Romans 3:23, NIV)

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23, NIV)

Believing is important to a loving God.

Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:14–17, NIV)

Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. (John 3:36, NIV)

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9, NIV)

Let’s do something about it:

Scripture says, “Every knee will bow and proclaim that Jesus is Lord “ so, first…

  • Humble yourself before Almighty God.
  • Admit to yourself and to God that you are sinful and have a need. This is called admission of guilt or confession.
  • Ask Him for forgiveness.
  • Repentance means walk away from the sin that has plagued you.
  • Place your life in His hands. Believe in Him (it is with the heart that one believes and is saved).

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