be baptised in water
why should I be baptised?
Jesus commanded us to be baptised. Read Matthew 28:19-20. Jesus modelled baptism, and affirmed John's baptism was God's plan. Receiving baptism means we identify Jesus as our Lord. Read Matthew 3:13-15. Baptism is a part of God's purpose for us. Read Luke 7:30.
Baptism is a symbol of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. It means we also have died to our old life and been raised to live a new life with Jesus. Read Romans 6:3-4. Baptism occurs immediately after, or as soon after, a person makes a faith commitment to follow Jesus (as modelled in Acts).
frequently asked questions
1. Is christening the same thing as baptism?
No. Baptism is associated with a person's personal commitment of faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. They are not baptised into a denomination, or a church, but they are baptied into what Jesus started, the kingdom of God. Baptism is a symbol of a new beginning (not your physical birth) , a new life, promised to those who place their faith in Jesus.
2. Is confirmation the same thing as baptism?
No. Jesus instructed his disciples to go and make disciples, teaching them to obey his commands, and to baptise them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Confirmation is a great introduction to teaching people to obey Jesus' commands, but it does not replace baptism. Both in Jesus' day and in our current day, baptism into the kingdom of heaven is not culturally normal.
3. Do I need to be baptised to be saved?
No. Baptism does not save you, but it is something that Jesus commanded, and modelled. Someone who resists getting baptised often will resist other things Jesus commands them to do. But if we learn to act in faith on what Jesus asks us to do, in all things, we will bear much fruit.
Jewish Baptism: Baptism was traditionally part of a new citizenship ceremony for foreigners who wanted to become a Jewish citizen. When a person was lowered beneath the water, it symbolised death to their old citizenship; and when they were raised back out of the water, it symbolised they had been born a Jew.
A Greater Baptism: John (later nick-named John the Baptist) began baptising people who were already Jewish, using a common symbol to express a greater message that God had given him. Read Matthew 3:1-2. He baptised people, not into Jewish citizenship, nor into a church denomination, but into the kingdom of heaven, the very thing that Jesus had come to establish. John and Jesus' 'baptism into the kingdom of heaven' was quite controversial in their time.