As you consider baptism...
We are excited that you are interested in being baptized! We believe that baptism is an important step of obedience for every person who has accepted Christ as their Lord & Savior. It's a powerful, symbolic experience in a Christian's life.
This packet is designed to prepare you for our upcoming Baptism Service. If you have more questions, please call us at the church office (209)521-5440. It's a privilege for us to walk with you as you take this next step on your spiritual journey.
One Church Pastoral Staff
What is baptism?
Baptism is an outward symbol of the inner commitment you've made to live for Christ, just as a wedding ring is an outward symbol of the commitment one spouse makes to another on their wedding day. Baptism is a public declaration of your faith in Christ by immersion in water. Going under the water illustrates Christ's death- and our own decision to die to our old sinful nature. Coming out of the water illustrates Christ's resurrection- just as we are now alive in Christ!
Biblical passages about being baptized...
Of course, the real significance of baptism cannot be defined merely with the analogy of a wedding, as mentioned above. At One Church, the Bible is the source of our beliefs. In Matthew 28:19-20 Jesus commands his followers to "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit." Baptism is the means by which people are identified as followers of Christ.
In passages such as Acts 2:41, Acts 8:12, and Acts 10:47-48 (below), it is evident that baptism follows an individual's decision to trust Christ alone for salvation. Baptism is not intended to provide salvation, but rather to be a public statement of a person's faith in Christ to save.
> Acts 2:41: "Those who accepted His message were baptized, and about 3,000 were added to their number that day."
> Acts 8:12: "But when they believed Philip as he proclaimed the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women."
> Acts 10:47-48: " 'Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.' So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ."
In Romans 6:1-11 (below) the Apostle Paul explains how baptism (being immersed in water) identifies the believer with the saving power of Jesus Christ.
> Romans 6:1-11: "What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 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. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus."
What about infant baptism?
We understand Scripture to teach that only professing believers are baptized, not undecided infants. Therefore, One Church does not practice infant baptism. Baptism does not make you a believer, rather it shows that you have made the decision to believe. If you were baptized as a child, it was the intent of your parents that you would one day be a follower of Christ. By being baptized now, you are making your own declaration of your faith in Christ.
Am I read to be baptized?
Baptism is for believers. A believer is someone who has realized that their sin has separated them from God. They have given up all efforts to reach God through good works or religious activity, and have concluded that Jesus Christ's death on the cross for their sins is the only thing that can bridge the gap between them and God. A believer is someone who has decided to trust Jesus Christ alone for their salvation. If you have come to that point in your spiritual journey, then the answer is YES! You are READY to be BAPTIZED!!
Your Baptism Date
Baptism Sundays are the best Sundays of the year. We will follow up with you shortly to schedule your date and service to be baptized. Here are a few things you should know to make your experience awesome:
1. Invite your friends and family! This is a time to share what Jesus has done in your life with everyone you know.
2. Bring a towel and a change of clothes. You will get wet! At One Track, you should receive a Baptism shirt to wear on the day of your baptism.
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