`What is the meaning of Christian Baptism?'
Ø It illustrates your identification with Christ’s burial and resurrection.
“For when you were baptized, you were buried with Christ, and in baptism you were also raised with Christ.” Colossians 2:12
Ø It illustrates your new life as a Christian.
“By our baptism then, we were buried with Him and shared His death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead... so also we may live a new life!”
· Baptism doesn’t make you a believer –it shows that you already believe.
· Baptism does not “save” you, only your faith in Christ does that.
· Baptism is like a wedding ring – the outward symbol of the commitment in your heart.
Who should be baptised?
Ø Every person who has believed in Christ.
“Those who believe and accepted His message were baptized...” Acts 2:41
“Simon himself believed and was baptized...” Acts 8:13
“But when they believed Philip as he preached the Good News.... and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.” Acts 8:12
Ø As soon as you have believed.
“Those who believe... were baptized... that day!” Acts 2:41
“Then Philip began with the scripture and told him the Good News about Jesus. As they travelled along the road, they came to some water, and the man said, ‘Look, here is water! Why shouldn’t I be baptized right now! Philip said, ‘If you believe with all your heart, you may.’ The man answered, ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.’ So they went down into the water and Philip baptized him.” Acts 8:35-38
There is no reason to delay. As soon as you have decided to receive Christ into your life, you can and should be baptized. If you wait until you are “perfect”, you will never feel “good enough”!
Why be baptised by immersion?
Ø Because Jesus was baptized that way.
“As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water.” Matthew 3:16
Ø Every baptism in the Bible was by immersion.
e.g. “... then both Philip and the man went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water...” Acts 8:38-39
Ø Because that’s what the word means.
The Greek word (Baptizo) was used to describe two things - to sink a boat or to dye a piece of cloth. Both require complete immersion.
Will I have to say anything?
One purpose of baptism is to publicly confess your personal commitment to Christ.
Your baptism is a great opportunity to witness. As a minimum requirement we ask that you are willing to publicly answer the following questions:
Do you believe in one God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
Do you confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour?
Do you turn from sin, renounce evil, and intend to follow Christ?
Do you promise to live within the fellowship of His church and to serve Him in the world?
So, you have been filled in on what Baptism is all about and you wish to go ahead and be baptised... the next thing is to follow the steps below; this is so nothing is missed and that your Baptism is as meaningful as possible...
STEP 1: Meeting
Arrange a time to meet with the minister to talk about being ready for baptism, and also about the practicalities of your baptism. If it is mutually felt to be right to go ahead then Individual or group classes will be arranged to prepare you for Step 2 ….
STEP 2: Baptism
As this is a really special occasion and a witness of your faith, some people like to invite family and friends.
STEP 3: Membership
Be welcomed into the local church community.
STEP 4: Discipleship
Keep attending Sunday services, events and groups that encourage and support you in your relationship with God.