Baptism




If you have made the decision to become a follower of Jesus, then the Bible encourages you to be water baptized.

 

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you,  in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.” 

Acts 2:38 NIV

 

Repentance is having a change of mind that produces a change of direction.  You did this when you accepted God’s invitation to a new life and received Jesus Christ as your Lord.  Having made that decision, God’s Word now commands us to be baptized.  Baptism serves four purposes. 

Declaration of Lordship

First, it declares Christ’s Lordship over our lives by being obedient to His first commandment to be baptized.  Lordship means ruler, master, director or leader.  This is what Jesus has become to everyone who has truly accepted His gift of eternal life.  Therefore, two words that will never go together in the Christian life are “No Lord!”  

Since we know that God’s plan for us is good, we know He would never ask us to do something that does not promote or advance His plan.  As you will learn, the blessings of the Christian life come because of our faithful obedience to the directives of God’s Word.

Public Declaration

Second, it serves as a public declaration of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  There are no secret agent Christians!  Jesus said, “Therefore, whoever confesses me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven.  But whoever denies me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven”.  (Matthew 10:32-33)

What a wonderful opportunity baptism gives you to do just that!  Invite your friends and family to witness this special event.  It may cause their hearts to be open to the life God is offering them as well. 

Spiritual Family

Thirdly, baptism identifies us with the body of Christ, His church.  Just as in the natural we are born into a family, we are born again into a spiritual family. When we are born in the natural, we receive the name of our earthly father.  At our baptism, we also receive the name of our family: the name of the Father (Lord), the Son (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit (Christ).  See Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 2:38, Acts 19:4-5.

Resurrection

Lastly, it is symbolic of the spiritual exchange that takes place at salvation.  Our old life has been buried and a spiritual resurrection has taken place unto newness of life.“Therefore, we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life”.  (Romans 6:4)

When to be Baptized

When should you be baptized?  Upon receiving Jesus Christ as Lord, the early disciples were baptized immediately.  Since this is your first step of obedience, it is valuable to be baptized as soon as possible.  Contact the church and find out when their next scheduled baptismal service is. 

 

Take this important first step and keep moving forward toward God’s victorious, abundant life.