For the last several months, I have been trying to find a “good time” to get baptized. I know, I know anytime is a good time. However, I was hoping that my church would be having their monthly baptisms on a weekend in which (a) my husband was off work and (b) we had family in town.
On January 27th, it worked out. I was baptized in front of my husband and group of very dear and loving friends.
So what does getting baptized really mean? Does it automatically reserve your spot next to The Big Guy? Does it make me a believer in Jesus Christ? Am I a bad Believer if I don’t get baptized?
Baptism is instead a great way to celebrate the way God has changed the lives of His followers. Getting baptized does not make you a follower of Christ, instead those who get baptized are showing how their faith in God has transformed them and they are committing to living for Him.
While baptism is not necessary to get into Heaven, Jesus spoke of the importance of it. After his death and resurrection, the last thing Jesus told his disciples was to make disciples out of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).
He too was baptized. Of all people, Jesus is the last person who you would think would need to be baptized, but he was. In Matthew 3, John the Baptist tried to talk Jesus out of being baptized, but He said, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires.”
The Bible says that once one is baptized, their old life is dead. You can let go of any past behaviors and sins by asking God to forgive you and putting your trust in Him. When you accept Christ’s love and give Him control of your life, you are no longer the same person.
The symbolic act of going under water shows that your old life is gone, and you emerge another person, one who has committed their life to following Jesus Christ.
My husband, who has been baptized before, told me something right before I went in. He said to imagine yourself going under and “dying”, allowing Christ to lift you out of the water. It is something I’ll never forget, and the feeling of coming up out of the water that night was incredible. Unless you have experienced it for yourself, it is not something that is easily described.
Again, I am no theologian, just a new Believer telling her story, but if you have any questions regarding baptism don’t hesitate to ask. The only answer I can give you is my story.
Did you feel 10 pounds lighter after your baptism? Do you have a funny story about your baptism–did you not hold your nose and swallow water? Did your head get bonked on the tub?