into Christ have put on Christ.”
What does it mean to be baptized? It is to go down into death and to come back up into Life. We were baptized into Christ. The water of baptism does not merely signify the washing away of sins, but the death of the sinner. We go down into the water, and we are brought up out of the water. If we were to stay under the water for long we would surely die. But we are quickly lifted back up out of the “grave.” This represents death and resurrection.
The outward sign of water baptism is meant to represent an inward spiritual truth – that I am baptized indeed, not into water only, but into Christ. I died with Him, and I was raised with Him. If I am one with Him then His death is my death; when He is raised, I too am raised. God has placed us in Christ, and since we are joined to the Lord, we are one spirit with Him. The Branches will go the way of the Vine. The Body will go the way of the Head.