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Experiential Baptism: Ephesians

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Ephesians 4:4
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This is another passage that is often thought to be about water baptism that is actually more about Spirit baptism.  Many hear this and don’t believe it (I didn’t used to believe it either) but let me try to explain why this can’t be about water baptism (besides the reasons that are obvious from reading the previous posts in the series).
All of the things mentioned here are Spiritual realities.  We are told first that there is one body and one Spirit.  This is true and important.  The one body is the Church and the one Spirit is (of course) the Holy Spirit.  These two are connected.  The Church is the people who have the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit is indwelling the Church.
“…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is talking about how we all accept the same gospel (and this is where we enter the one body through the one Spirit).  These are all connected.
In English, when you have a comma and a semi-colon surrounding a set of words that is telling you that the sentence is still true if you were to lift that part out.  “…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is a clarification saying that accepting the same gospel is how we receive the Spirit and enter the body.  This means that this could read “There is one body, one Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This means there is: one body (the Church), one Spirit (the Holy Spirit), one Lord (Jesus Christ), one faith (Christian Spirituality), one baptism (?), and one God (who is above all, through all, and in all)
I hope you can see how Trinitarian this verse is.  It is saying that our unity as Christians is based on the unity of Father, Son, and Spirit.  We are one just as They are one (which is the same thing Jesus prayed for in John).  You see, the body is the body of Christ and Christ is part of the Trinity.  The Spirit is part of the Trinity.  God is part of the trinity.
When it says that God is “above all, through all, and in all” it is saying that He is above, through, and in the body, the Spirit, the Lord, the faith, and baptism.  It is saying that all of these things are connected to God and to one another through Him.  The unity of these things to one another is where we find the basis for our unity as Christians.
The “one faith” may not seem to fit this theme but it really does.  Christian Spirituality (my term for the faith) is how we live in union with the Trinity (through the body, the Church).  The faith is the truth that has always existed among the Trinity and is the nature of the Trinity.  The essence of the faith is love and the Scriptures tell us that God is love.  It doesn’t say that God is “loving” but that He IS love.  That means that the faith (which is love) is God (in a sense) because God is love.  This means that to have union with God we must be love and the one faith is love so the faith is actually connected to the Trinity (and everything else in this list).
But where does that leave the “one baptism”?  Can this really be water baptism?  Is water baptism connected with the Trinity and the Church and thus a basis for our unity with God and with others?  I don’t think so.  I can see how Spirit baptism could be said to be part of this (because Spirit baptism connects us with the Trinity and the body) but I can’t see how water baptism would fit into Paul’s argument.  Even if he meant water baptism, he would be speaking experientially so there really wouldn’t be any problem but this verse shows that our unity with each other is based on our unity with the Trinity and their unity with each other.  This unity of the Trinity is one of the most important aspects to understanding Christian Spirituality and our place in it.
4:4
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This is another passage that is often thought to be about water baptism that is actually more about Spirit baptism.  Many hear this and don’t believe it (I didn’t used to believe it either) but let me try to explain why this can’t be about water baptism (besides the reasons that are obvious from reading the previous posts in the series).
All of the things mentioned here are Spiritual realities.  We are told first that there is one body and one Spirit.  This is true and important.  The one body is the Church and the one Spirit is (of course) the Holy Spirit.  These two are connected.  The Church is the people who have the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit is indwelling the Church.
“…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is talking about how we all accept the same gospel (and this is where we enter the one body through the one Spirit).  These are all connected.
In English, when you have a comma and a semi-colon surrounding a set of words that is telling you that the sentence is still true if you were to lift that part out.  “…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is a clarification saying that accepting the same gospel is how we receive the Spirit and enter the body.  This means that this could read “There is one body, one Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This means there is: one body (the Church), one Spirit (the Holy Spirit), one Lord (Jesus Christ), one faith (Christian Spirituality), one baptism (?), and one God (who is above all, through all, and in all)
I hope you can see how Trinitarian this verse is.  It is saying that our unity as Christians is based on the unity of Father, Son, and Spirit.  We are one just as They are one (which is the same thing Jesus prayed for in John).  You see, the body is the body of Christ and Christ is part of the Trinity.  The Spirit is part of the Trinity.  God is part of the trinity.
When it says that God is “above all, through all, and in all” it is saying that He is above, through, and in the body, the Spirit, the Lord, the faith, and baptism.  It is saying that all of these things are connected to God and to one another through Him.  The unity of these things to one another is where we find the basis for our unity as Christians.
The “one faith” may not seem to fit this theme but it really does.  Christian Spirituality (my term for the faith) is how we live in union with the Trinity (through the body, the Church).  The faith is the truth that has always existed among the Trinity and is the nature of the Trinity.  The essence of the faith is love and the Scriptures tell us that God is love.  It doesn’t say that God is “loving” but that He IS love.  That means that the faith (which is love) is God (in a sense) because God is love.  This means that to have union with God we must be love and the one faith is love so the faith is actually connected to the Trinity (and everything else in this list).
But where does that leave the “one baptism”?  Can this really be water baptism?  Is water baptism connected with the Trinity and the Church and thus a basis for our unity with God and with others?  I don’t think so.  I can see how Spirit baptism could be said to be part of this (because Spirit baptism connects us with the Trinity and the body) but I can’t see how water baptism would fit into Paul’s argument.  Even if he meant water baptism, he would be speaking experientially so there really wouldn’t be any problem but this verse shows that our unity with each other is based on our unity with the Trinity and their unity with each other.  This unity of the Trinity is one of the most important aspects to understanding Christian Spirituality and our place in it.
Ephesians 4:4
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This is another passage that is often thought to be about water baptism that is actually more about Spirit baptism.
Many hear this and don’t believe it (I didn’t used to believe it either) but let me try to explain why this can’t be about water baptism (besides the reasons that are obvious from reading the previous posts in the series).
All of the things mentioned here are Spiritual realities.  We are told first that there is one body and one Spirit.  This is true and important.  The one body is the Church and the one Spirit is (of course) the Holy Spirit.  These two are connected.  The Church is the people who have the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit is indwelling the Church.
“…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is talking about how we all accept the same gospel (and this is where we enter the one body through the one Spirit).  These are all connected.
In English, when you have a comma and a semi-colon surrounding a set of words that is telling you that the sentence is still true if you were to lift that part out.  “…just as you were called in one hope of your calling” is a clarification saying that accepting the same gospel is how we receive the Spirit and enter the body.  This means that this could read “There is one body, one Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
This means there is: one body (the Church), one Spirit (the Holy Spirit), one Lord (Jesus Christ), one faith (Christian Spirituality), one baptism (?), and one God (who is above all, through all, and in all)
I hope you can see how Trinitarian this verse is.  It is saying that our unity as Christians is based on the unity of Father, Son, and Spirit.  We are one just as They are one (which is the same thing Jesus prayed for in John).  You see, the body is the body of Christ and Christ is part of the Trinity.  The Spirit is part of the Trinity.  God is part of the trinity.
When it says that God is “above all, through all, and in all” it is saying that He is above, through, and in the body, the Spirit, the Lord, the faith, and baptism.  It is saying that all of these things are connected to God and to one another through Him.  The unity of these things to one another is where we find the basis for our unity as Christians.
The “one faith” may not seem to fit this theme but it really does.  Christian Spirituality (my term for the faith) is how we live in union with the Trinity (through the body, the Church).  The faith is the truth that has always existed among the Trinity and is the nature of the Trinity.  The essence of the faith is love and the Scriptures tell us that God is love.  It doesn’t say that God is “loving” but that He IS love.  That means that the faith (which is love) is God (in a sense) because God is love.  This means that to have union with God we must be love and the one faith is love so the faith is actually connected to the Trinity (and everything else in this list).
But where does that leave the “one baptism”?  Can this really be water baptism?  Is water baptism connected with the Trinity and the Church and thus a basis for our unity with God and with others?  I don’t think so.  I can see how Spirit baptism could be said to be part of this (because Spirit baptism connects us with the Trinity and the body) but I can’t see how water baptism would fit into Paul’s argument.  Even if he meant water baptism, he would be speaking experientially so there really wouldn’t be any problem but this verse shows that our unity with each other is based on our unity with the Trinity and their unity with each other.  This unity of the Trinity is one of the most important aspects to understanding Christian Spirituality and our place in it.
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Written by freeinchrist

June 27, 2009 at 8:00 am

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