Within religion today there are many different views and models of baptism and it can be a confusing issue, but the Bible speaks clearly as to what baptism is and what it isn’t.
Baptism is simply our public confession that we have become a Christian, it is an act that identifies us with Jesus and his death, burial and resurrection. As you can see in the image below, in baptism we identify with each parts of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. (Romans 6:3-5) In baptism we simply are proclaiming publicly that we are a follower of Jesus.
Baptism was commanded by Jesus (Matthew 28:19) and every believer should be baptized after they have accepted Christ as their Savior. At Fellowship you must be baptized after salvation to become a member of our church. We believe that baptism is the first act of obedience to the Lord after salvation.
FAQ’s about Baptism
Does baptism save?
No, there is no saving power in baptism. Baptism does not wash away our sin only the blood of Jesus can do that. We are saved only through faith in Christ. Baptism is simply a public confession of our internal faith in Christ. A person who has been baptized but has not been saved is just as lost as the person who has never been baptized.
What about baby baptism’s?
There is not a single verse in the Bible where a baby was baptized or where baby baptism is taught. Baby baptism’s are a religious tradition that have no scriptural basis. Those who believe in baby baptism point to it as a sacrament that anticipates the child coming to faith but the example’s given to us in scripture are always of adults who have believed on Jesus and then are baptized. An infant does not have the capacity to repent and believe on Jesus and therefore can’t publicly confess faith. A person who has been baptized as an infant should still be baptized scripturally after salvation.
What if I have never been baptized after salvation, is my salvation still secure?
Yes of course, baptism isn’t required for salvation. The Bible certainly commands us to be baptized but it is not a matter of our acceptance before God but rather our obedience to God. Just as every believer should desire to please God by living a holy life, praying, reading their bible, sharing their faith we should also desire to please God by being baptized. To refuse to be baptized is simply to say that you don’t want to be publicly identified with Jesus.
What about the baptism of the Spirit?
The greek word for baptize simply means “to immerse”, so the baptism of the Spirit is simply the act where God immerses or gives us the Spirit. This happens at the moment of our salvation, as soon as we trust Christ we are given the Holy Spirit who indwells us, comforts us, leads us and gives us spiritual gifts to use to edify the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 12:3) So the baptism of the Spirit is a separate event from baptism, we do not receive the Spirit at our water baptism. If that were the case then that would mean we would not have the Holy Spirit with us until we were baptized, which of course would be contrary to Scripture. The moment we trust Christ the Holy Spirit is with us and stays with us for the rest of our lives.