How To Untie A Donkey
Cont., page 2
THE THREE BAPTISMS
Having summarized and laid out these events and matters, let us examine this much needed baptism in the Holy Spirit. To do so, we will carefully consider the journey of the sons of Israel from Egypt to the Promised Land, as well as examine how this relates to us as individuals. By examining this, most importantly, we will understand the journey and composition of the church. What we find is that even as Yahweh God is a trinity Himself, and what He creates follows this three-part pattern, so His baptisms are a trinity.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:23, Paul set forth the trinity that we find in man: “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Man is a spirit and soul, and he occupies a body. And, the will and purpose of the Father in His restorative work is to make all three of these parts of man complete. How does He do this? He provides three baptisms, one for each of the three parts of man—his spirit, his soul, and his body.
Examining the journey of the sons of Israel, we find that in order to sanctify them entirely and to be preserved complete, they too experienced three highly telling baptisms. The word “baptize” literally means “to put into or under.” So, when were the sons of Israel baptized, put under an element of cleansing, specifically water? Again, there were in fact three occasions.
First, the sons of Israel were baptized under the cloud. In 1 Corinthians 10:1-2, we read, “For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.” Exodus 13:21-22 tells us that that cloud was a pillar of cloud by day, and a pillar of fire by night.
Next, we see in 1 Corinthians 10:1-2 as well that the second baptism was “in the sea.” In Exodus 14:22, we read that “The sons of Israel went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.” Once again they were baptized “under” literal water.
The third baptism was when they passed through the Jordan into the Promised Land. This time they were symbolically buried when twelve stones were placed in the camp west of the Jordan, and twelve stones were placed in the river bed. When the sons of Israel had passed into the Promised Land, the waters of the Jordan returned and baptized the twelve stones (Joshua 4).
Thus we see clearly testified three distinct baptisms:
Under the cloud
Under the sea
Under the Jordan
So first, how does this relate to man, particularly in Yahweh’s design of man equally as a trinity? In order for man to be sanctified entirely and his spirit, soul, and body be preserved complete, all three of these parts must experience their own separate baptisms, even as experienced by the sons of Israel. How is this effected?
What we find is that the baptism of one’s spirit is equal to the baptism under the cloud, likewise beginning one’s journey with Yahweh. This baptism is effected when one believes, and in faith their spirit is made alive unto Yahweh (Romans 10:8-10, Ephesians 1:13-14). Their spirit is baptized, resulting in His abiding presence and leading.
Next is the baptism in the sea, which is the baptism of one’s body. In Acts 2:38 and 22:16, we find that that baptism is associated with washing away sins—“be baptized, and wash away your sins.” Just as by faith our spirit is made alive, obviously water baptism effects a cleansing of sin in the flesh. But what about the soul?
The soul of a man is most unique. It is the mind, the will, and the emotions. It could also be said that the soul is the governor or government of a man. This is testified in the twelve stones that were buried in the Jordan. Twelve is the number of government; and appropriately, there are twelve areas of the soul.
The purpose of the soul in a spiritual man is to effect the will of the Father, even as the Son, the like second part of the Trinity, demonstrated. But, if a man’s soul is not baptized in the Holy Spirit, that task is very difficult, if not impossible. Just as this third baptism brought the sons of Israel into the Promised Land, so it is that with the critical baptism of one’s soul we enter into Yahweh’s promised land (Matthew 3:11, Acts 1:4-8, 2:1-4, 10:44-48 and 11:15-16). Most importantly, it affords the power promised by Yahshua when He told the disciples, “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you” (Acts 1:8). This is the promised baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Paul likewise attested to these three baptisms, in particular the baptism of the soul. In Acts 19:1-7, he found some disciples in Ephesus, and asked, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” To this they replied, “No, we have not even heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” They had been baptized into John’s baptism, which Paul explained: “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in Him who was coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” Thus we see baptism number one—the spirit. They were then baptized in water again in the name of Yahshua, thus baptism number two—the body. Then Paul laid his hands upon them and they received baptism number three—their soul. “And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking with tongues and prophesying [just like on the day of Pentecost].” How many were there who experienced this? Affirming this third critical baptism of the soul, we read, “There were in all about twelve men.”
In a personal testimony, it was not until I asked and received this third baptism that I was able to walk a life of obedience and to be led in truth. I had tried other times before, but failed without that power. Another Bride brother recently shared the same transforming experience. Only after he asked for the Spirit to come upon him was he even able to read and comprehend the Scriptures. Again, this is the baptism that takes us into our personal Promised Land—the baptism of our soul in the Holy Spirit in power.
Thus far we have considered these three baptisms relative to the personal level, as well as the national level in regard to the sons of Israel. But both of these point to a fulfillment that is much higher, and is in some regard the ultimate fulfillment. This is the fulfillment at the kingdom level. The fact is, while one can experience all three of these baptisms personally, at the kingdom level some may only experience or be a part of one or two of them. Today, we have the opportunity to experience the fulfilling kingdom level third baptism. What are these three baptisms? Let us see.
The most important work there is on the earth is the church. This is Yahweh’s Garden, even the Garden that was foreshadowed in the opening chapters of Genesis. The church is the kingdom of God, the kingdom of heaven on this earth. And, what is the simplest testimony of the church that we can find in the Scriptures? It is found in Zechariah 4—the work that “is not by might nor by power, but by [Yahweh’s] Spirit.”
Zechariah saw a vision of the church—an olive tree, followed by a lampstand, followed by yet another olive tree. What did he see? We now know. The church began with the formation of the first Remnant, the first son of fresh oil, founded and established by Yahshua Himself. Immediately following has been the vast Body of Christ, the breach, the seven-branched lampstand. Today, the church must now be concluded by the second Remnant, the second olive tree, the second son of fresh oil. This is the fulfillment of that which began with the first Remnant 2,000 years ago, and thereupon prepares the way for Immanuel.
So, how does this relate to the three baptisms evidenced by the sons of Israel? They are identical. What is Yahweh’s plan for kingdom man? To bring him into His rest. As it is stated in Deuteronomy 6:23, “He brought us out from there in order to bring us in, to give us the land which He had sworn to our fathers.” And when can that rest be fulfilled? On the seventh day, the Millennial Reign. But in order to get there, in order to sanctify the church entirely so as to be preserved complete without blame at His coming, He leads the church through three baptisms, as He did so with the sons of Israel.
The first baptism was the first Remnant. Evidenced by the presence of Yahweh with the sons of Israel by the cloud, so God was indeed with the first Remnant through His Son. But following was the breach, and this is precisely what we see testified with the second baptism.
When the sons of Israel came up to the Sea of Reeds, what happened to it? It breached! The water became a wall on their left and on their right, and they passed through the breach. This was in clear contrast with the Jordan where the water piled up at Adam (Joshua 3:16). One can be most certain that the way these two waters yielded to the sons of Israel prophesied. If Yahweh had so designed, He could have split the Jordan in the same manner as He did the Sea of Reeds. But in breaching the Sea of Reeds, He identified the breach of the Body of Christ. Also, the second baptism of man is the baptism of his body. Thus, it is quite fitting that the second work in the church is equally a body—the Body of Christ.
This brings us to the culminating third baptism, the baptism of the soul, the baptism of the twelve stones, even the baptism of power in the Holy Spirit that brings us into the Promised Land, the Millennial Reign. This is the establishment of the second Remnant, the Elijah company that prepares the way for Immanuel.
It is very revealing that in 1 Corinthians 10:1-2 Paul identified only two of the three baptisms—the baptisms “in the cloud and in the sea.” He did not speak of the third baptism—in the Jordan. Why? Because the Body of Christ would not have a part in it. The first two thousand years of the church are equally two parts, two baptisms. This is highly consistent with Paul being caught up to the third heaven, but not being allowed to speak of it either—it was unlawful for him to do so (2 Corinthians 12:2-4). As addressed in The Third Heaven, this is the third part, even the third one thousand year period, of the church, the kingdom of heaven. It is the Millennial Reign that is initiated by the fulfilling baptism of power in the second Remnant.
In this regard, Paul also identified these first two baptisms as specifically “into Moses.” Moses was a death work, a wilderness work that does not enter into the Promised Land—the fate of the first Remnant and Christianity. Thus, it was quite fitting and even remarkably important that Paul could not and did not include or identify this yet third baptism into Elijah, not Moses. Only now can this third baptism be recognized and addressed. Until now, as Paul stated, it has been unlawful to even declare the truth regarding this third work, the third part of the kingdom of heaven.
Therefore we see the following replicable testimony and even fulfillments. At the attesting national level, the sons of Israel were baptized:
Under the cloud
Under the sea
Under the Jordan
At the personal level, we can experience three baptisms, that He might sanctify us entirely and be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Immanuel. These are:
The baptism of our spirit
The baptism of our body
The baptism of our soul
And at the kingdom level, the church experiences the same course, the same three baptisms—the first two into Moses, the third into Elijah and the Millennial Reign:
The establishment and work of the first Remnant
The establishment and work of the Body of Christ
The establishment and work of the second Remnant
The evidence and testimony is clear and conclusive—it is time for this final baptism in power.
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