At Cross & Crown Church, we love baptisms! Because of the importance that baptism carries, we want you to fully understand what baptism is and why you should be baptized, so that you’re equipped to make this decision well. Please read more below.
Why should I consider getting baptized?
It’s important to understand what the Bible says about baptism. Even though Jesus wasn’t a sinner, he humbled himself and was baptized in obedience to identify with us and give us an example to follow.
At this time, Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan river. The moment he came out of the water, he saw the sky open and God’s Spirit, descended on him like a dove. Along with the Spirit, a voice: “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.” Mark 1:11
An Act of Obedience:
Water baptism is an act of faith and obedience to the commands of Christ.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20
A Public Declaration:
Baptism declares that you are a follower of Jesus Christ. It is a public confession of your faith in, and commitment to, Jesus Christ. It is the next step after salvation through repentance and faith and is an important foundation for the Christian life.
Then he said, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” Mark 16:15-16
What is the meaning and importance of baptism?
From Death to Life:
Baptism is a symbol of Christ’s burial and resurrection. Our entrance into the water during baptism identifies us with Christ’s death on the cross, His burial in the tomb, and His resurrection from the dead.
“…having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.” Colossians 2:12-14
A Brand New Life:
It is a symbol of your new life as a Christian. We bury the ‘old life’ and we rise to walk in a ‘new life’. Baptism is like a wedding ring, it is the outward symbol of the commitment you made in your heart, a commitment that has to be followed through and lived out on a daily basis.
Here is a simple explanation of baptism:
Baptism is a symbol that is meant to show the world that you love, trust, and have put your hope in Christ. Baptism is a statement to everyone who sees it that you have trusted Christ for your salvation and you’re now committed to living for Him.
Baptism does not save you, it does not cleanse your sins, and does not make you a believer; it shows that Christ alone has already done this!
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” 2 Corinthians 5:17
“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:4
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.” Ephesians 2:8,9
A New family:
Being a follower of Jesus is not one that should be done in isolation, but one that’s lived out in community. Baptism also connects us to the ‘body of Christ’, his people in the earth, the Church. Your baptism is your declaration that you’ve been adopted into the family!
“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 12:12-13
How are we to be baptiZed?
While some traditions would baptize by sprinkling, Cross & Crown baptizes by full immersion in alignment with the teaching of God’s word. We see in many passages including from the example of Jesus. The word “baptize” comes from the Greek word “βαπτίζω (baptizo)” which literally means “to immerse or dip under water”.
“And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him.” Matthew 3:16
“And all the country of Judea and all Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins…And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove.” Mark 1:5, 10
“John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because water was plentiful there, and people were coming and being baptized.” John 3:23
“And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing.” Acts 8:38–39
Who should be baptised?
Every person who has made the decision to believe in Christ. When Paul writes to the believers in Rome, he assumes that all of them have been baptized (Romans 6). The one requirement for baptism is belief in Christ!
“Those who accepted his message were baptised….” Acts 2:41.
“But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptised, both men and women.” Acts 8:12.
We believe in baptizing children when they are old enough to understand what it means and make a personal declaration of belief. This is a case-by-case basis that we deal with with each family that has a child who wants to be baptized.
When are we to be baptized?
Believers in the New Testament were baptized the same day. As soon as a person decides to believe in Christ, he can be, and is encouraged to be baptized. In all the accounts in the Scriptures, baptism is rather immediate. Scripture does not speak of a delayed baptism in which a believer refrains from obedience to the ordinance.
“And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.” Acts 22:16.
“Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus. And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing.” Acts 8:35-39.