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On This Wise Shall Ye Baptize
 

 "And the Lord said unto [Nephi]: I give unto you power that ye shall baptize this people when I am again ascended into heaven. On this wise shall ye baptize; and there shall be no disputations among you.  Verily I say unto you, that whoso repenteth of his sins through your words, and desireth to be baptized in my name, on this wise shall ye baptize them...."  (3 Nephi 11:21-23)  34 A.D.
 
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   <<Jesus Christ visiting and teaching the Nephites  
© By Intellectual Reserve, Inc. by John Scott
The above scripture is very clear that when the resurrected Savior Jesus Christ came to the Book of Mormon people they were taught the importance of baptism.  In fact it was one of the very first things that the Savior taught to these people.  He gave to twelve men the power and authority to baptize.  These Nephite Apostles baptized thousands of people.  The Savior, his Apostles and the people of course esteemed baptism as a very important ordnance.  
Baptism is a Christian doctrine that was taught by John the Baptist, Jesus Christ and his twelve Apostles in Jerusalem.
 

    <<  Spanish conquistadors and their native Tlaxcalan allies entering the Aztec capital city of Tenochtitlan

<< In the early 1500’s, when the first Spanish Conquistadors, explorers and representatives of the Catholic Church came into the Aztec, Maya, and Inca civilizations of the New World. They found, as to be expected, pagan beliefs and the worshiping of false gods.   One of their goals was to bring to them Christianity.

To their surprise these native people already had knowledge of events in the Old Testament part of the Bible and some of the teachings of Jesus Christ as taught by him on the sermon on the Mount in Jerusalem.  Including the teaching about Baptism.  In fact they were already baptizing their children.  Baptism is a Christian doctrine.  
Why were they already baptizing their children?  
The answer is plain and simple.  
The Savior himself taught their early ancestors about baptism but they within 400 years they had fall away from the pure teaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and had “departed from the ways of the Lord”.

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“They were once a delightsome people, and they had Christ for their shepherd; yea, they were led even by God the Father.”  (Mormon 5:17 380-384 A.D.
“O ye fair ones, how could ye have departed from the ways of the Lord! O ye fair ones, how could ye have rejected that Jesus, who stood with open arms to receive you!”  (Mormon 6:17)  380-384 A.D.

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  <<Diego de Landa

Landa, in 1572 A.D. was the first Catholic Bishop in the Yucatán.
He stated the following:
"Among the Maya we found a large number [thousands] of books" and "burned them all." After Landa had destroyed these ancient books he decided that someone should record information concerning the Maya people so he wrote the book 'Relacion of Landa,' (Landa's Relacion de las Cosas de Yucatan)
The first edition of Relacion of Landa was published in French in 1864 and in English in 1937.

Diego de Landa recorded the following:
"Baptism… exists under a name, which means "to be born anew or again"…for in the language of Yucatan "sihil," means, "to be born anew or again." We have not been able to find its origin, more than that it is a custom that has always existed, and for which they had so much devotion that no one failed to receive it; and so much reverence for the rite that those who had sins, if they were capable of knowing they had committed them were obliged to make a special confession of them to the priest, in order to receive baptism, and they had such great faith in it that they never repeated it in any way."  "…The high priest… took water… and touched with it the forehead and eyes and face [and hands and feet] saying three times 'AH ah ah' which seems to signify and mean, live again, or remember…."

"...if anyone died without baptism they believed that he would have to suffer more torments in hell than a baptized person."

"They…[felt that by being baptized] they received a preliminary disposition towards being good…and by this means and by a well ordered life to attain glory….”
     (Landa's Relacion de las Cosas de Yucatan- Landa’s Relacion, p.102)

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   << Friar Bernardino de Sahagún
"Sahagum writes…[the] bishop of Chiapas arrived at Campeche, Mexico in the year 1554,… he not only saw what Montejo had written about the baptism of the Yucatecs but also learned that all the natives of that country were baptized, no one being allowed to marry before that sacred ceremonies had been performed on him… …they believed that by this ablution [cleansing] they received a pure nature, were protected against evil spirits,…"  "Baptism… would cleanse the soul from sin…"  
(De Roo,, History of American before Columbus p. 466-467)
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The following informaiton is from The Catholic Online Encyclopedia, 2015;

The Mayas... [
in 1519 A.D. performed], a rite suggestive of baptism...."
"The Mayas, [at the time of the invasion in 1519], preserved, [or had a knowledge and performed], a rite suggestive of baptism...."

(The Catholic Online Encyclopedia, Volume X, Copyright © 1911 by Robert Appleton Company, Online Edition Copyright © 1999 by Kevin Knight, Nihil Obstat, October 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor, Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York)