How many different baptisms are mentioned in the Bible? A careful study of this word can be confusing, in (Eph 4:5) we read one, and in (Heb 6:2) we see the word listed in the plural form meaning more than one. We know that all scripture is the Word of God, and there cannot be any mistakes by a Perfect God. So therefore, any confusion in the use of this word in scripture must be in the area of our understanding, or lack thereof. In the past I have put together an article in which I mention "four baptisms", not just one, two or three. So let us take a closer look at the Biblical use of this word. The English word comes from a Greek word meaning to completely "immerse" some object into some medium such as water. So in the scriptures we can normally expect to find this as the common use of the word. In (Acts 2:38) Peter declared "each of you must repent from your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit". In most countries, when someone coverts from some other religion to faith in Jesus Christ, the persecution comes when they declare their faith in Christ by being publicly baptized. So I believe this would have to be the one common understanding of this expression for the use of this word. Of course there is not one agreed upon method of baptism, but we find many different modes used by different denominational churches.
Then in (1 Cor 12:13) we read "we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit". This is Paul's way of expressing our "new birth" experience that we see Jesus explaining to Nicodemus in (John 3:3), by which we become members of God's Forever Family by being "adopted" by the Father, and given the Holy Spirit as a guarantee that we are "born again". In (Matt 3:11-12) John the Baptist mentions that Jesus Christ will "baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire", and we see the confirmation of this promise in (Acts 1:1-8) by Jesus. Then in chapter 2 we see the fulfillment of this promise to the 120 disciples that were gathered together to celebrate the annual "Feast of Pentecost". Here we see both the Spirit and the fire, so was this one or two baptisms on the same day? I considered this as 2 in my former article, but that was only because fire often refers to a process of "purging" to remove impurities, while the Spirit usually refers to "power". So it leaves us with a question of which the proper "Scriptural Baptism"?
Dave Jamer 21/04/12