Romans 6:3
Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
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(3) Know ye not.—It should be as in the Greek, Or know ye not. Do you not admit this principle; or am I to suppose that you are ignorant? &c.

Were baptized into Jesus Christi.e., “into communion with Him and incorporation in His mystical body” (Ellicott on Galatians 3:27). “As many of you as have been baptised in Christ have put on Christ.” Your baptism signified an intimately close and indissoluble attachment to Christ.

Were baptized into his death.—And this attachment had a special relation to His death. It involved a communion or fellowship with His death. This fellowship is ethical, i.e., it implies a moral conduct corresponding to that relation to Christ which it assumes.

Why has baptism this special connection with the death of Christ? In the first place, the death of Christ is the central and cardinal fact of the Christian scheme. It is specially related to justification, and justification proceeds from faith, which is ratified in baptism. In the second place, the symbolism of baptism was such as naturally to harmonise with the symbolism of death. It was the final close of one period, and the beginning of another—the complete stripping off of the past and putting on of the “new man.”

Romans 6:3-4. Know ye not — Can any of you be ignorant of this great and obvious truth, that so many of us as were baptized into Christ — That is, into the profession of the Christian faith; or implanted into and made a part of the mystical body of Christ by baptism, (as εις Χριστον seems to imply,) were baptized into his death — Engaged by baptism to be conformed to his death, by dying to sin, as he died for it, and crucifying our flesh with its affections and lusts, as his body was crucified on the cross; and also were made partakers of the benefits thereof, one of which is the mortifying of sin, and all sinful passions. Being baptized into Christ, or ingrafted into him through faith, we draw new spiritual life from this new root, through his Spirit, who fashions us like unto him, and particularly with regard to his death and resurrection. Therefore we are buried with him — Alluding to the ancient manner of baptizing by immersion; by baptism into death — That is, to engage us to die unto sin, and to carry on the mortification and death of it more and more: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory — That is, the glorious power; of the Father, even so we also — In conformity thereto, should rise again by the same power; and should walk in newness of life — As Christ being raised from the dead lives a new life in heaven. From all this it appears, that baptism, the rite of initiation into the Christian Church, is an emblematical representation of our dying to sin, and living to righteousness, in consequence of our union with Christ as members of his body; as also of the malignity of sin, in bringing death upon Christ, (Romans 6:10,) and upon all mankind, and of the efficacy of Christ’s death, in procuring for all pardoning mercy, renewing grace, and future glory; a resurrection both from spiritual and temporal death, to spiritual and eternal life.6:3-10 Baptism teaches the necessity of dying to sin, and being as it were buried from all ungodly and unholy pursuits, and of rising to walk with God in newness of life. Unholy professors may have had the outward sign of a death unto sin, and a new birth unto righteousness, but they never passed from the family of Satan to that of God. The corrupt nature, called the old man, because derived from our first father Adam, is crucified with Christ, in every true believer, by the grace derived from the cross. It is weakened and in a dying state, though it yet struggles for life, and even for victory. But the whole body of sin, whatever is not according to the holy law of God, must be done away, so that the believer may no more be the slave of sin, but live to God, and find happiness in his service.Know ye not - This is a further appeal to the Christian profession, and the principles involved in it, in answer to the objection. The simple argument in this verse and the two following is, that by our very profession made in baptism, we have renounced sin, and have pledged ourselves to live to God.

So many of us ... - All who were baptized; that is, all professed Christians. As this renunciation of sin had been thus made by all who professed religion, so the objection could not have reference to Christianity in any manner.

Were baptized - The act of baptism denotes dedication to the service of him in whose name we are baptized. One of its designs is to dedicate or consecrate us to the service of Christ: Thus 1 Corinthians 10:2, the Israelites are said to have been "baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;" that is, they became consecrated, or dedicated, or bound to him as their leader and lawgiver. In the place before us, the argument of the apostle is evidently drawn from the supposition that we have been solemnly consecrated by baptism to the service of Christ; and that to sin is therefore a violation of the very nature of our Christian profession.

Into - εἰς eis. This is the word which is used in Matthew 28:19, "Teach all nations, baptizing them into εἰς eis the name of the Father," etc. It means, being baptized unto his service; receiving him as the Saviour and guide, devoting all unto him and his cause.

Were baptized unto his death - We were baptized with special reference to his death. Our baptism had a strong resemblance to his death. By that he became insensible to the things of the world; by baptism we in like manner become dead to sin. Further, we are baptized with particular reference to the design of his death, the great leading feature and purpose of his work. That was, to expiate sin; to free people from its power; to make them pure. We have professed our devotion to the same cause; and have solemnly consecrated ourselves to the same design - to put a period to the dominion of iniquity.

3. Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ—compare 1Co 10:2.

were baptized into his death?—sealed with the seal of heaven, and as it were formally entered and articled, to all the benefits and all the obligations of Christian discipleship in general, and of His death in particular. And since He was "made sin" and "a curse for us" (2Co 5:21; Ga 5:13), "bearing our sins in His own body on the tree," and "rising again for our justification" (Ro 4:25; 1Pe 2:24), our whole sinful case and condition, thus taken up into His Person, has been brought to an end in His death. Whoso, then, has been baptized into Christ's death has formally surrendered the whole state and life of sin, as in Christ a dead thing. He has sealed himself to be not only "the righteousness of God in Him," but "a new creature"; and as he cannot be in Christ to the one effect and not to the other, for they are one thing, he has bidden farewell, by baptism into Christ's death, to his entire connection with sin. "How," then, "can he live any longer therein?" The two things are as contradictory in the fact as they are in the terms.

Know ye not? q.d. This is a truth which you ought not to be ignorant of and which confirms what I say.

Baptized into Jesus Christ: to be baptized into Christ, is either to be baptized in the name of Christ; see Acts 10:48, and Acts 19:5; or else it is, incorporated, ingrafted, or planted into Christ, and so to be made members of his mystical body by baptism.

Baptized into his death: to be baptized into the death of Christ, is to have fellowship with him in his death, or to have the efficacy of his death sealed up to us; and that is the blessed privilege of as many as are baptized or planted into Christ; they are not only partakers of the merit of his death for justification, but of the efficacy of his death for mortification. See a parallel place, Galatians 3:27. Know ye not that so many of us as, You must know this, you cannot be ignorant of it, that whoever

were baptized into Jesus Christ, were baptized into his death: and therefore must be dead to sin, and consequently ought not to live, nor can they live in sin. This does not suppose, that some of this church were baptized persons, and others not; but that some might be baptized in water who were not baptized into Christ: there is a difference between being baptized in water in the name of Christ, and being baptized into Christ, which believers in their baptism are; by which is meant, not a being brought by it into union with Christ, which is either secretly from eternity, or openly at conversion, and both before the baptism of true believers; nor a being brought by it into the mystical body of Christ the church, for this also is before it; but rather it designs a being baptized, or a being brought by baptism into more communion with Christ, into a participation of his grace and benefits; or into the doctrine of Christ, and a more distinct knowledge of it: the power of which they feel upon their hearts, and so have really believed in Christ, heartily love him, and make a sincere profession of him; though rather the true meaning of the phrase "baptized into Christ", I take to be, is to be baptized purely for the sake of Christ, in imitation of him, who has set us an example, and because baptism is an ordinance of his; it is to submit to it with a view to his glory, to testify our affection for him, and subjection to him, without laying any stress or dependence on it for salvation; such who are thus baptized, are "baptized into his death"; they not only resemble Christ in his sufferings and death, by being immersed in water, but they declare their faith in the death of Christ, and also share in the benefits of his death; such as peace, pardon, righteousness, and atonement: now this proves, that such persons are dead to sin, who are so baptized; for by the death of Christ, into which they are baptized, they are justified from sin; by the death of Christ, their old man is crucified, and the body of sin destroyed; besides, believers in baptism profess themselves to be dead to sin and the world, and their baptism is an obligation upon them to live unto righteousness.

{3} Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into {c} Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

(3) There are three parts of this sanctification: that is, the death of the old man or sin, his burial, and the resurrection of the new man, descending into us from the virtue of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, of which benefit our baptism is a sign and pledge.

(c) To the end that growing up as one with him, we should receive his strength to extinguish sin in us, and to make us new men.

Romans 6:3. ] or, if this (Romans 6:2) should still appear doubtful. See Hartung, Partikell. II. p. 61; Baeumlein, Partik. p. 132. Comp Romans 7:1.

ἀγνοεῖτε] presupposes an acquaintance with the moral nature of baptism; it must in fact have been an experimental acquaintance. With this knowledge, how absurd would be that ζήσομεν ἐν αὐτῇ! Comp 1 Corinthians 6:2.

ὅσοι] all we who, not stronger than οἵτινες, but put differently; not characterising, but designating the whole collectively.

ἐβαπτίσθημεν εἰς Χ. ʼΙ. εἰς τὸν θάν. κ.τ.λ[1387]] we, who were baptized in reference to Christ Jesus[1388] (we who through baptism became those specifically belonging to Him), were baptized in reference to His death; i.e. we were brought through our baptism into the fellowship of His death; so that we have a real share ethically in His death, through the cessation of all our life for sin. Theodore of Mopsuestia: τὸ βάπτισμα κοινωνοὺς ποιεῖ τοῦ θανάτου τοῦ Χριστοῦ. Ambrosiaster: “cum baptizamur, commorimur Christo;” Bengel: “perinde est, ac si eo momento Christus pro tali homine, et talis homo pro Christo pateretur, moreretur, sepeliretur.” This interpretation, namely of the spiritual fellowship produced through baptism (prepared for by the repentance and πίστις that preceded baptism, accomplished by the baptism itself, Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:11 f.; Titus 3:5), is required by the context in Romans 6:2 (ἈΠΕΘΆΝΟΜΕΝ), Romans 6:4 (ΣΥΝΕΤΆΦΗΜΕΝ), and Romans 6:5 f. It is therefore not the idea of imitation (Reiche, Köllner, following Grotius and others), but that of the dying along with (συσταυροῦσθαι, Romans 6:6; Galatians 2:20; comp 2 Corinthians 5:14) unto which, i.e. in order to the accomplishment of which in us, we were baptized. The efficient cause of this fellowship of death is the divine grace, which forgives sin and grants the Holy Spirit to him who becomes baptized; the means of this grace is baptism itself; the appropriating cause is faith, and the causa meritoria the death of Christ.[1390] Observe here also, however, that the spheres of justification and sanctification are not intermixed. The justified person becomes sanctified, not the converse. In baptism man receives forgiveness of sins through faith (comp Acts 2:38; Acts 22:16); justified by which he also becomes partaker of the virtue of the Holy Spirit in the sacrament unto new life (Titus 3:5). “Liberationem a reatu peccati vel justificationem consequitur liberatio a dominio peccati, ut justificati non vivant peccato, sed peccato mortui Domino,” Calovius. Compare ἀπελούσασθε, ἡγιάσθητε 1 Corinthians 6:11, and the remarks thereon. The latter is the fellowship in dying and living with Christ, which is accomplished in baptism by the operation of the Spirit; see on Galatians 3:27; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Acts 19:2 f.; Weiss, bibl. Theol. p. 345 f. But it is of course obvious that the idea of the baptism of children was wholly foreign to this view of the Apostle based on experience.

[1387] .τ.λ. καὶ τὰ λοιπά.

[1388] Βαπτίζειν εἰς never means anything else than to baptize in reference to, in respect to; and the more special definitions of its import are furnished simply by the context. Comp. on Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 10:2; Galatians 3:27.—On εἰς Χ. Ἰησοῦν comp. Acts 2:38; Acts 8:16; Acts 19:5. Undoubtedly the name “Jesus” was named in baptizing. But the conception of becoming immersed into Christ (in Rückert and others, and again in Weiss, bibl. Theol. p. 343) is to be set aside, and is not to be supported by the figurative expression in Galatians 3:27. The mystic character of our passage is not produced by so vague a sensuous conception,—which moreover has all the passages against it in which βαπτίζειν is coupled with ὄνομα (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38; Acts 10:48; Acts 19:5; 1 Corinthians 1:13)—but is based simply on the ethical consciousness of that intimate appertaining to Christ, into which baptism translates its recipients.

[1390] Namely as the atoning death (v. 6, 19, 21), the appropriation of which shall be attended with the saving effect of a new life belonging to Him, 2 Corinthians 5:14-15. If this death thus becomes “the end, once for all existent, of the relation of the world to God as determined by sin” (Hofmann), that is the divinely willed ethical result, which faith obtains from the ἱλαστήριον, inasmuch as the believer realises his being dead to the power of sin with Christ, who in His expiatory death underwent the killing power of sin and therewith died to that power (vv. 9, 10). Comp. ver. 10 f.Romans 6:3. But this death to sin, on which the whole argument turns, raises a question. It is introduced here quite abruptly; there has been no mention of it hitherto. When, it may be asked, did this all-important death take place? The answer is: It is involved in baptism. ἤ ἀγνοεῖτε ὅτι κ.τ.λ.: the only alternative to accepting this argument is to confess ignorance of the meaning of the rite in which they had been received into the Church. ὄσοι ἐβαπτίσθημεν: we all, who were baptised into Christ Jesus, were baptised into His death. The ὅσοι is not partitive but distributive: there is no argument in the passage at all, unless all Christians were baptised. The expression βαπτισθῆναι εἰς Χριστὸν does not necessarily mean to be baptised into Christ; it may only mean to be baptised Christward, i.e., with Christ in view as the object of faith. Cf. 1 Corinthians 10:2, and the expression βαπτισθῆναι εἰς τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ Κυρίου Ἰησοῦ. In the same way βαπτισθῆναι εἰς τὸν θάνατον αὐτοῦ might certainly mean to be baptised with Christ’s death in view as the object of faith. This is the interpretation of Lipsius. But it falls short of the argumentative requirements of the passage, which demand the idea of an actual union to, or incorporation in, Christ. This is more than Lipsius means, but it does not exclude what he means. The baptism in which we are united to Christ and to His death is one in which we confess our faith, looking to Him and His death. To say that faith justifies but baptism regenerates, breaking the Christian life into two unrelated pieces, as Weiss does—one spiritual and the other magical—is to throw away the Apostle’s case. His whole point is that no such division can be made. Unless there is a necessary connection between justification by faith and the new life, Paul fails to prove that faith establishes the law. The real argument which unites chaps. 3, 4 and 5 to chaps. 6, 7 and 8, and repels the charge of antinomianism, is this: justifying faith, looking to Christ and His death, really unites us to Him who died and rose again, as the symbolism of baptism shows to every Christian.3. so many of us, &c.] Not implying that some were, and some were not. This is plain from the Gr. All Christian believers are contemplated; for each his baptism was all this, if a true baptism.—This and Romans 6:4 contain the only mentions of Baptism in the Epistle. He refers the converts to their baptism as to the great crisis of their lives, when, having already, by Divine grace, “turned from idols to serve the living God,” they made (so to speak) their formal self-surrender to their Redeemer, and received His formal acceptance of them as His own.

into Jesus Christ] i.e. so as to belong to Him, to obey Him, and to learn of Him. Cp. the parallel phrase “baptized into Moses,” 1 Corinthians 10:2.

into his death] i.e. so as to come into special relations with it. We may paraphrase, “into Him as the Slain One.” His atoning death was the primary point of apostolic teaching. See 1 Corinthians 15:3.Romans 6:3. ) Or? [‘an,’ Latin. The second part of] a disjunctive interrogation.—ἀγνοεῖτε, know ye not?) The doctrine concerning baptism was known to all. The same form of expression occurs again ch. Romans 7:1. to which the phrase, know ye not? corresponds, Romans 6:16; Romans 11:2 [Wot ye not?] and 1 Cor. throughout. Ignorance is a great obstruction; knowledge is not sufficient.[55]—ὄσοι, whosoever) [as many soever]. No one of the Christians was by that time unbaptized.—ἐβαπτίσθημεν, were baptized) The mentioning of Baptism is extremely well suited to this place; for the adult, being a worthy candidate for Baptism, must have passed through the experience of these things, which the apostle has hitherto been describing. Paul in his more solemn epistles, sent to the churches (Rom. Cor. Gal. Eph. Col.), at the beginning of which he calls himself an apostle, mentions Baptism expressly; in the more familiar (Phil. Thess.) he presupposes it.—εἰς) into. The ground on which we are baptized.—Χριστὸν Ἰησοῦν, Christ Jesus) The name Christ is here put first, because it is more regarded here, Romans 6:4, Galatians 3:27.—εἰς τὸν θάνατον αὐτοῦ, into His death) He who is baptized puts on Christ, the second Adam; he is baptized, I say, into a whole Christ, and so also into His death, and it is the same thing as if, at that moment, Christ suffered, died, and was buried for such a man, and as if such a man suffered, died, was buried with Christ.

[55] The point in this sentence is putting officit in antithesis to sufficit, but it cannot be imitated in English—it might be, ignorance is exceedingly officient, knowledge is not sufficient, were officient an English word, which it is not.—TR.Verse 3. - Or know ye not that so many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death! η}, if taken in the sense of "or," at the beginning of ver. 3, will be understood if we put what is meant thus: Do you not know that we have all died to sin? Or are you really ignorant of what your very baptism meant? But cf. Romans 7:1, where the same expression occurs, and where η} appears only to imply a question. The expression βαππτίζεσθαι εἰς οξξυρσ also in 1 Corinthians 10:2 and Galatians 3:27; in the first of these texts with reference to the Israelites and Moses. It denotes the entering by baptism into close union with a person, coming to belong to him, so as to be in a sense identified with him. In Galatians 3:27 being baptized into Christ is understood as implying putting him on (ἐνεδύσασθε) The phrases, βαπτιξεῖν ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι, or ἐν τῷ ὀνόματι, or εἰς τὸ ὄνομα, were understood to imply the same idea, though not so plainly expressing it. Thus St. Paul rejoiced that he had not himself baptized many at Corinth, lest it might have been said that he had baptized them into his own name (εἰς τὸ ἐμὸν ὄνομα), i.e. into such connection with himself as baptism implied with Christ alone. Doubtless in the instruction which preceded baptism this significance of the sacrament would be explained. And if "into Christ," then "into his death." "In Christum, inquam, totum, adeoque in mortem ejus baptizatur" (Bengel). The whole experience of Christ was understood to have its counterpart in those who were baptized into him; in them was understood a death to sin, corresponding to his actual death. This, too, would form part of the instruction of catechumens. St. Paul often presses it as what he conceives to be well understood; and in subsequent verses of this chapter he further explains what he means. Know ye not (ἀγνοεῖτε)

The expression is stronger: are ye ignorant. So Rev. The indicative mood presupposes an acquaintance with the moral nature of baptism, and a consequent absurdity in the idea of persisting in sin.

So many as (ὅσοι)

Rev., all we who. Put differently from we that (οἵτινες, Romans 6:2) as not characterizing but designating all collectively.

Baptized into (εἶς)

See on Matthew 28:19. The preposition. denotes inward union, participation; not in order to bring about the union, for that has been effected. Compare 1 Corinthians 12:12, 1 Corinthians 12:13, 1 Corinthians 12:27.

Into His death

As He died to sin, so we die to sin, just as if we were literally members of His body. Godet gives an anecdote related by a missionary who was questioning a converted Bechuana on Colossians 3:3. The convert said: "Soon I shall be dead, and they will bury me in my field. My flocks will come to pasture above me. But I shall no longer hear them, and I shall not come forth from my tomb to take them and carry them with me to the sepulchre. They will be strange to me, as I to them. Such is the image of my life in the midst of the world since I believed in Christ."

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