Baptisms

 

Thinking about getting baptised?

If you are interested in getting baptised, please read through this page prayerfully and then speak to Rev. Lucy or one of our Deacons.

Baptists derive their name from the very visible practice of believers’ baptism.

Baptism involves the total immersion of a person into water in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit on their own profession of faith. Unlike some other Christian denominations, Baptists do not baptise infants but only those who are of an age to make a clear declaration of their own free will. By means of baptism, a person declares their desire to turn from a life without God to one which is lived for God through Jesus Christ.

 

Baptism marks a new start. It is intended to take place near to a person’s first commitment to Christ and as part of the process by which they pass from the world of unbelief to the life of faith. People of all ages and mental ability are welcome to be baptised as soon as they are able to make a clear personal decision.

 

What you do

In the process of becoming Christians we repent of our sins and believe in Jesus Christ.

What the church does

The church responds to our faith by baptising us.

What God does

God grants the gift of the Holy Spirit to renew our inner life and to work in us the spiritual power to live holy and godly lives. This is not to suggest that God only comes into this process at the end, rather, God has been there from the beginning, awakening us to our need and enabling us to respond. The response we make in faith is therefore itself a gift from God, and this is only possible because God is already working in us.

 

The meaning of baptism

Baptism is a dramatic and symbolic act and it is rich in meaning. It speaks of the following spiritual realities:

  • Being born: In John 3:5-6 Jesus speaks of the need to be ‘born of water and the spirit’ in order to see the kingdom of God. 

 

  • Being washed: Inevitably, the drama of baptism can also be seen as taking a bath. Titus 3:5, refers to the ‘washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit’. New birth carries the idea of being washed clean from the polluting effects of the sinful life.

 

  • Being buried and raised: Baptism is also like being buried in a grave and then raised to a new life beyond death.

 

  • Being immersed in the Holy Spirit: When a person is baptised, they are usually fully immersed in water which captures the idea of being plunged into the Holy Spirit.

 

Why be baptised?

Baptism is therefore the way in which Christians declare that they have turned to God and placed their faith in Christ with the intention of living as Christian disciples. Those who want to follow Christ should be baptised for a number of reasons.

  • First of all, because Jesus has commanded it.

  • Secondly, because to do so is to follow Jesus’ example.

  • Thirdly, because it is the best way to confess Christ publicly.

  • Fourthly, because baptism is a means of grace.

  • Fifthly, because baptism blesses the church.

 

Taken from BUGB Baptist Basics, Believers Baptism document.

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