Baptism: What It Does and Does Not Do

It’s hard to read very far in the New Testament without coming across a reference to baptism. But why? What is baptism? What does it do? And what does it not do?

This sermon emphasizes respect for God and his authoritative will. The authority for baptism isn’t difficult to find in the New Testament. The sermon explores a variety of New Testament examples in order to discern the historical background and significance of baptism, as well as what baptism does and does not do.

Baptism: What It Does Not Do

  • It does not irresistibly change one’s heart.
  • It does not miraculously alter the trajectory of one’s life.
  • It does not supernaturally solve all of life’s difficulties.
  • It does not magically immunize against temptations or trials.
  • It does not guarantee heaven as one’s default destination.

Baptism: What It Does

  • It brings one into contact with the blood of Christ.
  • It puts one into Christ.
  • It leads to being added by the Lord to the body of Christ.
  • It serves as a means of presenting oneself as an obedient slave to God.
  • It remains as an indispensable step in the “obedience of faith.”

This sermon was delivered on February 10, 2013.

For more sermons, visit the sermons archive or subscribe to the podcast.


  1. I did a couple of lessons by these titles once. I think I like your bullet points better than mine.

  2. Ugh, I find it troubling that most of my thoughts on baptism were from the first category. Guess that was me being naive at a young age. Thank you for sharing this. The journey is definitely a battle.