Baptism

Baptism is going public about your faith in Jesus and communicating to the world your heart-felt commitment to following Him. It's the next step after salvation.

Questions About Baptism?

People often have questions regarding baptism: Why should I be baptized? What if I’ve already been baptized—do I have to do it again? Does it matter if someone is sprinkled or dunked? Take a few minutes to read the answers to thesecommon questions about baptism.

1. What is baptism?

Baptism is an outward expression of an inward change. It’s a public declaration of how Jesus changed your life. Being baptized shows others that you’ve decided to follow Jesus, and allows them to celebrate this decision with you (Acts 16:31-34).

Baptism doesn’t save a person; it’s a symbol and celebration of salvation (1 Peter 3:21). The power that brought Jesus back to life is the same power Jesus uses to change our lives – and that’s worth getting excited about!

2. Why should I be baptized?

Why does baptism matter? Jesus instructs us to be baptized and set the example by being baptized (Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 1:9).

Obedience to Jesus shows we believe and follow Him. (1 John 2:3). Because Jesus went public about His love for us, we can go public about our love for Him. Being baptized shows that we turn away from a life of sin toward Jesus, the only one who can change us (Acts 2:38-41).

3. When's the best time to be baptized?

For everyone who decides to follow Jesus, baptism is the next step. Anyone who commits his or her life to following Jesus is ready to be baptized (Acts 8:12).

4. Do you baptize children?

As parents, we can help point our children to Jesus, but they are the ones to decide if they will commit their lives to Him (Romans 10:9).

Any instance of baptism follows a person’s decision to trust Jesus for his or her salvation and commitment to follow Him (Acts 10:47-48). At Canvas, we wait until children are old enough to express their own decision to follow Jesus and understand the meaning of baptism.

If your child has already asked Jesus into his life, explain what baptism is and what it means. Facilitate the conversation, but don’t dominate it. Read more tips for talking to your kids about baptism.

5. What's the difference between immersing, sprinkling, and other types of baptism?

Baptisms in the Bible were by immersion. The original word for baptism most often referred to being immersed or submerged in water. Jesus was baptized by being immersed in the water and rising out of it (Matthew 3:16, Mark 1:10).

Submersion in the water symbolizes the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). Being submersed underwater represents our death to sin and old way of life, and being raised out of the water is a picture of how Jesus raised us and gave us a fresh start in life (Romans 6:3-5).

6. If I've been baptized before, should I be baptized again? 

Being re-baptized is not forbidden in scripture at all. In fact, in Revelation 2:5 we are encouraged to do our "First works over" if we know that something has caused us to compromise our walk with God and we desire to reconsecrate our lives to him again.

Also, sometimes people were baptized at a very early age and were not fully aware of their need for Christ and realize that as an adult they have grown in their understanding and appreciation of their relationship with God. Being re-baptized is completely appropriate in these situations and we encourage people to take this next step if they so choose. 

Is baptism your next step?

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