Born of Water and Spirit – Does this mean Baptism?

John 3:5 (NIV)
Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit.
There has been debates regarding wether water being referred to in the above verse means water baptism or not. Wether this is the same baptism that John and subsequently Apostles did. This is my take. 
John 3:10 (NIV)
“You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things?
Jesus expected Nicodemus to know what he meant by water and the spirit because he is a teacher, this means because he is a teacher, he knows the scriptures and if he knows the scriptures, then it can only be the Old Testament scriptures since the New Testament was no written yet. There is no baptism in the Old Testament only baptismos meaning rite and not baptsima meaning baptism as indicated in the New Testament. Therefore we need to look in the Old Testament scriptures to look for what Nicodemus should have known but did not and we find that in Ezekiel 36:24-28.
I agree that John 3:5 where Jesus talks about being born of water and Spirit refers to this verse
Ezekiel 36:24-27 (NIV)
“‘For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. 25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
Notice that each verse starts with “I will”. This is God speaking. God says verse 25, I will wash you, verse 26, I will give you a new heart and verse 27, I will give you my spirit then in verse 28, he declares us as his people and him, our God
Ezekiel 36:28 (NIV)
Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God.
This is God’s sovereign action. He as God does the washing and the giving of the spirit. He says in John 3:6 that the only thing that flesh can produce is flesh. Salvation is by grace through faith plus nothing. John’s baptism cannot save you because salvation is not by any works and baptism is works done by flesh which can only produce flesh. John himself said, I baptize you with water but the one who comes will baptize you with the spirit and fire. 
Matthew 3:11 (NIV)
“I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Spirit and fire plus nothing. He did not include water, just spirit and fire plus nothing. During Jesus’s time, the spirit had not come yet hence there was still water baptism but on the day of Pentecost, water baptism stopped being a requirement since now we were baptized by the spirit  as John said. John also says he was told to baptize with water
John 1:33 (NIV)
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. ’
From this verse you can see that God is the one who told John to baptize with water but when Jesus comes, it will be by the spirit. Lastly, baptism was viewed as a ceremonial washing by John’s disciples and Jews
John 3:25-26 (NIV)
An argument developed between some of John’s disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing. 26 They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.”
In summary, the water referred to in John 3:5 is not baptism as done by John and the apostles but an Act of God and includes giving of his Spirit. To be born again means God himself must wash you and give you his spirit by his own grace through your faith. All you have to do is simply believe.
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Posted in Salvation, Selected Scriptures.

2 Comments

  1. JUst to add, John 3 vs 1 to etc, might not mean Baptism.
    But atleast let's make some reference to Acts 8 vs 29 to …, where the Holy Spirit uses Phillip to baptize the Ethopian Eunuch…….and take note in the words of the Holy Spirit through Phillip ..while he asked the Ethopian, whether he believes or not, and ONLY then baptizes him in Water……..but relate the very same words of question(Holy Spirit through Phillip) and answer(Ethopian) to the words of Paul in Romans 10 vs 7 …., where he links the question and answer scenerio above,,links them to Salvation…

    ACTS 8 vs 29 to 39
    25 Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.
    Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch
    26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. 27 And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship 28 and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29 And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.” 30 So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this:
    “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter
    and like a lamb before its shearer is silent,
    so he opens not his mouth.
    33 In his humiliation justice was denied him.
    Who can describe his generation?
    For his life is taken away from the earth.”
    34 And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus. 36 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. (ESV)

    ROMANS 10 vs 7 to
    But the righteousness based on faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven? ’” (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 “or ‘Who will descend into the abyss? ’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); 9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” ESV

    The extracts shows a couple of issues
    1. SAlvation (baptism, holy spirit inetraction, believing, faith, Jesus Christ as the son of God, Jesus as the one who died for our sins, etc)
    2. Anyone has that previlege, Greek, Roman. JEw, Ethopian, Zulu, Tswana, etc

    SO, salvation is not far from you. FAith is the key.

    Baptism is an instruction from Christ, lets honour the instruction Matthew 28 vs 19 to 20,

    Mark 16 vs 15, 16

    HAving said all the above, NO QUANTITY OFwater in the WORLD can WASH you CLEAN, NOR , no BEST PURITY of WATER in the WORLD can WASH you clean, if YOU DONT BELIEVE…FAITH IS THE KEY TO SALVATION….THEN BAPTISM, ETC, ETC, FALLS IN IMPLEMENTATION.

  2. JUst to add, John 3 vs 1 to etc, might not mean Baptism.
    But atleast let's make some reference to Acts 8 vs 29 to …, where the Holy Spirit uses Phillip to baptize the Ethopian Eunuch…….and take note in the words of the Holy Spirit through Phillip ..while he asked the Ethopian, whether he believes or not, and ONLY then baptizes him in Water……..but relate the very same words of question(Holy Spirit through Phillip) and answer(Ethopian) to the words of Paul in Romans 10 vs 7 …., where he links the question and answer scenerio above,,links them to Salvation…

    ACTS 8 vs 29 to 39
    25 Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.
    Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch
    26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. 27 And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship 28 and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29 And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.” 30 So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this:
    “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter
    and like a lamb before its shearer is silent,
    so he opens not his mouth.
    33 In his humiliation justice was denied him.
    Who can describe his generation?
    For his life is taken away from the earth.”
    34 And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus. 36 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. (ESV)

    ROMANS 10 vs 7 to…13

    The extracts shows a couple of issues
    1. SAlvation (baptism, holy spirit inetraction, believing, faith, Jesus Christ as the son of God, Jesus as the one who died for our sins, etc)
    2. Anyone has that previlege, Greek, Roman. JEw, Ethopian, Zulu, Tswana, etc

    SO, salvation is not far from you. FAith is the key.

    Baptism is an instruction from Christ, lets honour the instruction

    HAving said all the above, NO QUANTITY OFwater in the WORLD can WASH you CLEAN, NOR , no BEST PURITY of WATER in the WORLD can WASH you clean, if YOU DONT BELIEVE…FAITH IS THE KEY TO SALVATION….THEN BAPTISM, ETC, ETC, FALLS IN IMPLEMENTATION.

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