The Apostle Paul wrote, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). All who have received Christ have been crucified with Christ. God the Father has judged us guilty of sin, and our sentence has been carried out on Jesus at the cross. The Bible teaches that our “old self” has been crucified and buried with Christ, and being immersed in the water symbolizes this death and burial of the old self. The water represents the grave into which our old self has been buried. “For you died,” the Bible says, “and your life is now hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3).
Not only have we been buried in Christ, but we have also been raised with Him. Paul wrote, “We were therefore buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:4). Because Jesus has been raised from the dead, we who have received Him have also been raised to eternal life in Christ. Jesus lives in us, and we walk with Him eternally. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die” (John 11:25-26). We who live and believe in Jesus have already died with Him, and we have been raised to eternal life. Baptism illustrates this truth by illustrating our being raised from the watery tomb into which we were lowered.