Baptism in water (or water baptism)



4. What was the baptism for the dead that was practiced by some believers at Corinth, as it is written: “Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?” (1 Corinthians 15:29)?



It was a water baptism which some believers underwent on behalf of those believers who had died without it, therefore it was a substitute baptism. However, we are not called to undergo this kind of baptism. It is true that Paul mentions it in his first epistle to the saints of Corinth but his words do not authorize such a custom. His words had only the purpose to show the saints of Corinth, among whom were some who said that there was no resurrection of the dead, that if the dead do not rise at all, it was contradictory that some were baptized for the dead. In other words, Paul meant that those who were baptized for the dead underwent that baptism for they believed that one day there will be the resurrection of the dead otherwise they would not have been baptized for the dead. Thus the apostle mentioned the unbiblical custom of being baptized for the dead, which was followed by some believers of that Church, in order to prove that there was the resurrection of the dead