Public Proclaimation Of An Inward Change In Jesus
One of the most important things for a child of God is to be obedient to Him. Adult or believers water baptism is a biblical teaching and sacred practice for true followers of Christ.
If you are thinking of going for water baptism, please speak with the Pastor or any leaders of SAIF Church. A baptism class will be scheduled so that you fully understand the significance, importance and procedure for baptism.
BAPTISM IS A STEP OF OBEDIENCE for the believer to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ as found in Matthew 28:19-20:
“Go Therefore And Make Disciples Of All The Nations, Baptizing Them In The Name Of The Father And Of The Son And Of The Holy Spirit, Teaching Them To Observe All Things That I Have Commanded You; And Lo, I Am With You Always, Even To The End Of The Age.” Amen.
Water Baptism Is Not A Personal Choice, But An Act Of Obedience To The Commandments Of The Lord (Mark 16:16).
Baptism Is An Ordinance/Sacrament Of The Church Because It Is Something That Jesus Himself Ordained.
Water Baptism Is A Public Statement Of Personal Faith In Christ Jesus As Lord And Savior . It Is A Public Acknowledgment Of A Life-Long Commitment To Follow God.
In Water Baptism, The Believer’s Immersion In Water Represents Death Of The Old Self. As The Believer Comes Out Of The Water, It Is A Symbol Of New Life, Or Resurrection.
IMPORTANCE OF BAPTISM
1. JESUS COMMANDED HIS DISCIPLES TO BAPTIZE NEW BELIEVERS: You cannot be baptized simply to become a member of a church or because somebody may think it’s a good idea. Mk.16:16 “He who believes and is baptized will be saved.” Acts 2:38 “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins…” John14:21 “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”
2. CHRIST SET AN EXAMPLE. He did nothing without purpose, He himself took baptism to set an example for us to follow in His footsteps (1 Pet. 2:21; Mt 3:15).
3. TO FULFILL ALL RIGHTEOUSNESS. Mt 3:15 But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
4. THE APOSTLES COMMANDED BELIEVERS TO BE BAPTIZED (Acts 2:38).
5. BAPTISM IS FOR ALL THOSE WHO BELIEVE. BAPTISM IS AN OUTWARD DEMONSTRATION OF AN INWARD FAITH. (Acts 8:5, 12; 35-38).
6. IN BAPTISM, THE BELIEVER IDENTIFIES WITH CHRIST. When I am baptized I DEMONSTRATE WHAT CHRIST DID FOR ME IN HIS DEATH, BURIAL AND RESURRECTION (Romans 6:3-6). I die to sin. I am buried like Christ… I AM RAISED IN THE POWER OF THE HOLY GHOST AS A BRAND NEW PERSON.
7. BAPTISM IS AN ORDINANCE OF THE CHURCH, because it is something that Jesus Himself ordained. BAPTISM IS A VERY IMPORTANT CONFESSION OF FAITH TO ENTER INTO THE BODY OF CHRIST – THE CHURCH. 1Cor. 12:13 “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body–whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free–and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.” This is how during Bible days believers were accepted when they make a PUBLIC STATEMENT OF THEIR FAITH IN CHRIST JESUS AS THEIR PERSONAL LORD AND SAVIOR.
8. IT IS DANGEROUS TO REJECT THIS COMMAND. Luke 7:30 “But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the will of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.” Mt 7:21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”
IS WATER BAPTISM NECESSARY FOR SALVATION?
While baptism itself has no power to cleanse or save from sin, it is an important step of obedience in a believer’s life as an outward acknowledgment of the salvation experience that has already taken place.
Salvation is not contingent upon water baptism. We see in Luke 23, the account of the criminal who hung on a cross next to Jesus:
39 Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.” 40 But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” 42 Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”43 And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” Luke 23:39-43.
He was never baptized in water, yet Jesus said he would be in paradise with Jesus. He was saved because he believed and called upon the name of the Lord.
The immersion in water does not cause a change in the spiritual state of the believer. However, WATER BAPTISM SYMBOLIZES THE CHANGE THAT HAS ALREADY TAKEN PLACE IN THE HEART AND LIFE OF THE BELIEVER. IT IS AN ACT OF OBEDIENCE.
WHO SHOULD GET BAPTIZED?
ALL BELIEVERS SHOULD GET WATER BAPTIZED. Even Jesus was baptized. In Matthew 3 the Bible states:
13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried toprevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”
15 But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
Jesus was without sin. Yet, in obedience to the Father’s will, He was baptized. In the same way, IN OBEDIENCE TO GOD’S WILL, WE TOO SHOULD BE BAPTIZED.
The Bible in I John 2:6 states that, “He Who Says He Abides In Him Ought Himself Also To Walk Just As He Walked.” Thus, as we follow in His footsteps, we should make this public confession of our faith.
WHEN SHOULD A NEW BELIEVER BE BAPTIZED?
BELIEF AND BAPTISM GO HAND IN HAND. There is no special “waiting period” before baptism. There is no process or education necessary prior to Water Baptism. The ONLY PREREQUISITE IS FAITH. If you believe, once you believe, you should be baptized.
In the Bible, there is Example After Example Of New Believers Being Baptized Immediately Following Belief. In Acts 2, after Peter and the one hundred and twenty were filled with the Holy Spirit and Peter gave his first sermon those in attendance asked, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Acts 2:37. And Peter replied, ” Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:38-39. The Bible goes on to tell us that, “[t]hose who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.” Acts 2:41.
Again in Acts 8:12, the Bible tells us, “But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized.”
Later in the same chapter of the Book of Acts, when Philip shared the good news with the eunuch and he believed, upon seeing water on the side of the road, the eunuch asked, ” See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” Acts 8:36. “So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him.” Acts 8:38.
Then in Acts 10, as Peter was speaking, “the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.” Acts 10:44.
47 “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days. Acts 10:47-48.
WHO CAN PERFORM THE ORDINANCE OF WATER BAPTISM?
A Pastor, Elder Or Mature Believer Who Himself Is Saved And Baptized By Immersion In Water And Who Has Received Baptism Of The Holy Spirit Should Minister The Rite Of Water Baptism (Acts 2:38-42, 8:14-17; 10:44-48).
HOW DOES ONE GET WATER BAPTIZED?
The English word “baptize” comes from the Greek word “baptizo” which means “to immerse or dip something in a liquid.” Thus, sprinkling of water or pouring of water does not meet the definition of baptize.
The word baptizo means baptize or immerse and can never be translated as anything else. Whenever the New Testament refers to baptism, the word bapto is used in one form or another-and this always signifies full immersion.
Full immersion baptism is what Jesus intended and is the mode that was practiced in the New Testament church.
When Jesus was baptized, He came “up out of the water” (Mark 1:10). When Philip baptized the Ethiopian eunuch, both of them went “down into” and came “up out of” the water (Acts 8:38-39).
The Baptism Formula Jesus Commanded To His Disciples in Matthew 28:19-20 In The Name Of The Father, And Of The Son, And Of The Holy Spirit.
Infants Should Not Be Baptized Because:
1. There is no Scriptural basis for this practice.
2. Babies cannot repent of their sins. Infant and children cannot repent of their sins, they have no idea about having faith in Christ Jesus. John the Baptist refused to baptize the religious leaders as they had not repented of their sins and they had not been born again. Therefore, only those who have ability to repent and are saved can be baptized.
3. They cannot confess faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior of their lives.
4. They cannot be taught all the commands that Jesus commissioned to His disciples to teach after baptism (Matt.28:19).
5. Baptism must be taken willingly and infants cannot choose to obey God in baptism. They do not understand about sin and walking in spiritual victory.
An infant, or even a small child, who does not have the understanding or ability to choose to be baptized or to make a commitment to Christ should not be baptized. Thus, baby baptism does not fulfill the purpose behind water baptism.
Children are dedicated unto the Lord and when they reach the age of accountability, they should repent of their sins and then be baptized. BAPTISM BY ITSELF WILL NOT SAVE ANYONE. It is repentance of sins and faith in Jesus Christ will save us.
PROCEDURE OF THE BAPTISM SERVICE
Water Baptism is done in the presence of witnesses, family and friends.
2. Songs Or Hymns Which Conveys The Meaning And Importance Of Baptism.
3. Short Message By The Minister and Scripture Reading. Matt. 3:1-17, 28:18-20; Mk. 1:1-11, 16:14-17; Acts 2:38-42; 8:26-39; 10:44-48; Rom.6:1-13
4. Baptism Candidate Gives His/Her Testimony
5. The Pastor, Elder Or Mature Believer First Enters The Water, And Then Baptism Candidates Appear Individually.
6. Holding the Baptism Candidates individually, the Pastor, Elder Or Mature Believer asks the Baptism Candidate basic questions about his/her born again experience, faith in the triune God and on the life, death, burial, resurrection and second coming of Jesus Christ.
Do You Believe Jesus Christ Is The Son Of God?
Have You Accepted Jesus Christ As Your Personal Lord And Savior?
Have You Repented Of Your Sins And Asked Forgiveness Of Your Sins? Have You Become A New Person In Christ? (Mk. 16:15-16; Acts16:31–33)
7. Then the Baptism Candidate says “I do” to each question in a public proclamation of faith. Then the Pastor, Elder Or Mature Believer shall say: “Upon The Confession Of Your Faith In The Lord Jesus Christ, I Now Baptize You, In The Name Of The Father, And Of The Son, And Of The Holy Spirit.”
8. The Baptism Candidate is immersed under water and brought back out in an act of Baptism. When the Baptism Candidate comes out of the water, the Pastor, Elder Or Mature Believer admonishes, “Be Faithful Until Death And You Will Receive The Crown Of Life.”
9. The Service Is Ended With The Song Or Hymn And With Final Prayer And Benediction.
Additional Baptism Notes
The Bible Tells About Seven Kinds Of Baptisms
This does not mean that you have to take seven baptisms but these are for you to understand that there are other baptisms also. Ephesians 4:5 says, “…one Lord, one faith, one baptism.”
1. Baptism In The Cloud And In The Sea. 1 Cor. 10:1-2
2. Baptism Of John The Baptist In Water. Mk. 1:1-8
3. Baptism Of Jesus In Water. Lk. 3 & Matt. 3
4. Believer’s Water Baptism Acts 2:44-48
5. Baptism In The Holy Spirit. Lk. 3:16; Acts 11:16.
6. Baptism Into The Body Of Christ (Church). Gal. 3:27; 1Cor. 12:13
7. Baptism Of Suffering/Fire. Lk. 12:50, Phil.1:29
FREEDOM AND POWER TO CHOOSE NOT TO SIN
The Bible states:
“Therefore, If Anyone Is In Christ, He Is A New Creation; Old Things Have Passed Away; Behold, All Things Have Become New.” II Corinthians 5:17.
When a believer is born again, old sins are washed away by the cleansing blood of Jesus. Jesus died on the cross to pay the full penalty for our sins. He died as our substitute. If we believe on Him, we receive forgiveness and reconciliation with God the Father.
Jesus also died in our stead to put to death the power of sin in our lives. As we unite ourselves with Him, we can attempt to live righteously and overcome the temptation of sin. We are united to Christ when we invite Jesus to become Lord and Savior of our lives.
This does not mean that we can no longer sin. It Means That We Have The Freedom And Power To Choose Not To Sin. We Are No Longer Held As Slaves Or Held In Bondage To Sin. The Bible says: “But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, ed[verlasting life.” Romans 6:22.
Likewise you also, Reckon Yourselves To Be Dead Indeed To Sin, But Alive To God In Christ Jesus Our Lord. Therefore Do Not Let Sin Reign In Your Mortal Body, That You Should Obey It In Its Lusts. And Do Not Present Your Members As Instruments Of Unrighteousness To Sin, But Present Yourselves To God As Being Alive From The Dead, And Your Members As Instruments Of Righteousness To God. Romans 6:11-13.
My Responsibility After Baptism
In Acts 2:38-42 we find detail about a believer’s responsibilities after baptism.
1. Devotion To Apostolic Teaching/Doctrine.
2. Regular Fellowship With Other Believers.
3. Participation In The Holy Communion.
4. Prayer and Spiritual Disciplines