What If There Is No Water?

Kent Heaton

"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth" (Genesis 1:1). It is unfathomable to imagine the power found in Genesis 1:1. How can we measure the magnitude of the creation of the world by the word of God? He spoke and the world came into existence. "God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light" (Genesis 1:3). He divided the portions of the earth, formed the planets and established their order in the universe and caused the land to produce vegetation and animals by the power of His word.

The great wonder of God's power is found in the story of the deliverance of Israel from Egypt. Sending the plagues upon Pharaoh and the wicked nation of Egypt was a sign of the immense power of God that concluded with the death of the firstborn among the people of Egypt (Deuteronomy 6:22). When Job contended with Jehovah the reply out of the whirlwind came with the might and force of the omnipotent presence of the Creator. "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, When the morning stars sang together, And all the sons of God shouted for joy?" (Job 38:4-7).

How can one compare the work of God in His divine supremacy over man? He destroyed the whole earth (save eight souls) by a flood in Genesis 6. The vengeance of the Lord destroyed the cities of the plain including Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis 19. Nations rose and fell under the command of God (Zephaniah 3:8) and kings were displaced by the will of God. The miracles of Jesus lay testimony to His power over every dominion and power known to man and the greatest of miracles was His birth. We stand in fearfulness of how great our God is.

On the road to Gaza, the Holy Spirit instructs the evangelist Philip to find a man traveling back to his home in Ethiopia. Luke tells us the area Philip would find his prospect was a "desert" (Acts 8:26). Joining the man of Ethiopia, Philip began at Isaiah 53 and "preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, 'See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?'" (Acts 8:35-36). Imagine that - a desolate place where two men found water to be baptized.

The critics of water baptism would suggest that baptism cannot be necessary for salvation because "what if there is no water to baptize the person"? This kind of theology is suggesting that God is omnipotent in everything but providential care of those who want to obey His will. The Lord can create the world and destroy the world but helping two men find water to be baptized is out of His power. To deny the necessity of baptism is to deny the will of God (Acts 2:38; Romans 6:3-6; Galatians 3:26-27; 1 Peter 3:21). To deny the necessity of baptism because someone somewhere in the world will not find sufficient water to be baptized is to treat the Creator with great contempt.

Detractors of water baptism are much like Naaman (2 Kings 5) who "thought" he had a better way than the will of the Lord. Until he humbled himself he remained a leper. Until men humble themselves and obey Jesus Christ in baptism they remain in their sin. You provide the faith and God will provide the water.