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SALVATION QUESTION 153
What is meant by the phrase "baptized for the dead" in 1 Corinthians 15:29? Does it mean substitute baptism for those who have already died?
This is a very strong view held by a certain cult that exists in our land. They baptized by proxy. Ancestors who have died may have the living baptized for them. This is totally foreign to the Bible. Whatever a verse means must be in harmony with what is taught throughout the Scriptures. There is not even a hint anywhere that it means what is being taught. There are three other views held on this verse:
Have you trusted Him?
- Church members who had died at Corinth were being replaced by newly baptized ones. This also does not have any compatibility with the rest of the Word of God. Nowhere is baptism and church membership associated.
- Since baptism is a picture of death, burial, and resurrection, those being baptized are declaring that the dead in Christ will arise. (1 Corinthians 15:6 and 1 Corinthians 15:20). He is simply asking, if some of you Corinthians say there is no resurrection of the body, why are you showing this in the symbol of baptism?
- "And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain." 1 Corinthians 15:14. Baptism is a symbol of His death and resurrection. The latter two are both scripturally correct. His resurrection is the pledge of all believer's resurrection. The gospel is how He died, was buried, and rose again. (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
All comments and questions to: Harold Smith
Updated March 13th, 2014 by Sandra Felix