The word baptism is a reoccurring word in the New Testament, and it has a very significant meaning to New Testament believers. In this article, we would be looking at what baptism is and 3 reasons why baptism is important to believers.
The word “Baptism” is derived from the Greek word “baptizo”, which is literally translated to mean “dip” or “immerse”. Baptism, therefore, means to dip or immerse someone or something in a “medium”.
The importance of baptism is numerous. The Bible reveals different types of baptism, and each type has its significance and importance.
The primary importance of baptism is that Christ commands us to be baptized. He wants us to be partakers of baptism (Matthew 28:19, Luke 24:49). Obedience to this command of God makes baptism essential, and this obedience has numerous blessings attached to it.
Baptism is a symbol of one’s identification with Christ, and with the Holy Spirit. It shows that we now have Christ and the Spirit of God indwelling in us. It is a mark of our new status in the faith.
Baptism is important because it builds our faith. The immersion of one in baptism means our totality is being submerged into Christ, and into His Spirit. As our faith is built up, we are able to depend on and love Christ
Baptism is an essential component of the Christian faith, practiced across several denominations. Have you been thinking of what baptism is actually about, the necessity of it, and the reasons why it should be done at all?
Then this article is here to give you answers as we explore what baptism is, and 3 reasons why baptism is important for you.
What Is Baptism According To The Bible ?
Baptism, as defined earlier, means to “immerse” or “dip”. In Christianity, baptism is an act that symbolizes that one has accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior.
In the bible, the word baptism is mentioned severally in the New Testament especially. Though having the same translated meaning, baptism has been used in different ways.
Baptism does not end only after conversion. New converts have a need of baptism, and other believers also have a need for baptism. Throughout our Christian journey, we would experience baptism in different ways and measures.
In all, Baptism connotes that one is thoroughly immersed or submerged in something. For it to be baptism there has to be total immersion. Anything short of that makes it void. Baptism is by immersion, be it water, the Holy Spirit, or fire, as seen in Scriptures. This will be looked into later.
In baptism, we are fully immersed in Christ, in the Holy Spirit, and in the work of Christ in us. Baptism is a symbol of our total yieldedness to the work of the blessed Trinity.
Types Of Baptism In Christianity
Having seen what baptism is, let us look at the types of baptism. In the Bible, there are 3 types of baptism. We will look at each of these types of baptisms closely.
John the Baptist said in Matthew 3:11 (KJV),” I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:”
From the passage above, we can identify 3 types of baptism, listed below;
• baptism of Water
• baptism of the Holy Ghost
• baptism of Fire
1. The Baptism of Water
Also known as “Water Baptism”. This comes after salvation. It is a symbol of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. Water baptism is a public declaration of identification with Christ and the body of Christ.
In water baptism, the believer declares his faith that Christ died for his sins and rose again for his justification. It also shows that the new believer dies to his old life and rises to his new life in Christ. (Romans 6:3-6)
Water baptism should be done by one immersion into a body of water. The word itself means to be immersed or dipped in, and it should be done as such.
We have several examples of baptism in the bible and they were all done by immersion. We see our Perfect example, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was dipped in the river Jordan once. The eunuch of Ethiopia was immersed, the people who John the Baptist baptized were all baptized by immersion into a body of water.
2. The Baptism of the Holy Ghost
The Holy Ghost is the third person in the Godhead. In the scriptures, He is known with other names such as the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth, the Comforter, and many others.
The baptism in the Holy Ghost, or Spirit baptism, is the immersion of a believer in the fullness of the Spirit of God. It is when the Holy Spirit comes upon a believer and endues him with power from on high (Acts 1:8).
Acts chapter 2 gives us a vivid picture of the baptism of the Holy Ghost. As seen here, and in other scriptures (Acts 10:44-46, Acts 19:1-6).
Usually, the baptism in the Holy Ghost comes with the initial evidence of speaking in other tongues, previously unlearned, and the believer speaks as the Spirit gives him/her utterance (Acts 2:1-4).
Like Salvation, the baptism of the Holy Ghost is also a gift from God (Acts 2:18). It is God’s promise to His children (Luke 24:49)
The Holy Ghost baptism is important to believers because it empowers us, emboldens us, gives us victory in prayer, and illuminates us. He enables us to be effective witnesses for God and confirms our witnessing with miracles, signs, and wonders.
A believer can receive this gift of the Holy Ghost if he/she desires and asks God for it. Just like He gives salvation to sinners who believe in Him for it, our God pours out His Spirit on believers who ask Him.
3. The Baptism of Fire
The third type of baptism is the baptism by fire. In the Scriptures, fire is very often used to connote a refining force.
Fire purifies, it burns off all the dross from the silver, and refines gold, getting it rid of all impurities. The fire also brings judgment. The baptism of fire is the cleaning and purging work of the Lord on His children (Luke 3:17). This baptism is a work of the Lord Jesus Himself.
This baptism purifies and purges us to prepare us for His coming. Christ is coming back for a spotless church, a church without blemish, and His fire is one way He prepares us for that.
The baptism by fire is for the good of every Christian (1Corinthians 3:10-15). It checks us to ensure we are still aligned with Christ and builds us up to remain like Jesus.
What Is Water Baptism According To The Bible?
According to the Bible, water baptism is a symbol of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Water baptism is the immersion of a saved person in water, as seen by the numerous examples in the scriptures.
This is essential to our obedience after reconciliation with God. Christ Jesus gave the commandment to be baptized… “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” (Matthew, 28:19)
The act of water baptism could be summed up in one word – Identification. Water baptism is a public identification of a new convert with Jesus Christ and the Christian faith. It is a public profession of one’s repentance and faith in Christ.
It is identification with the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 6:3-5), and this wonder is what the Christian faith is based on.
Water baptism is not synonymous with salvation. They are different, and one comes before the other. They cannot be used interchangeably either.
Salvation is the first step of it all. When a sinner repents from his/her sins (Luke 24:46; Acts 3:19), he receives Salvation by grace through faith (Eph. 2:8). Afterward, he should then be baptized in obedience to the word of God.
The New Testament records a catalog of people who got saved without water baptism being a pre-condition. We see the Eunuch of Ethiopia (Acts 8:30), Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10), the thief who was crucified alongside our Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 23:39-43,) Saul of Tarsus (Acts 9:17), and many others.
Water Baptism, therefore, according to scriptures, commanded by Christ, to be done by all who profess salvation, by immersion under water, in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost, as a symbol of a person’s faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ.
Implications Of Water Baptism: What Happens When You Get Baptized
When you get baptized, you are identifying yourself with Christ. In other words, you are saying “I died with Christ, I am buried with Christ and I am resurrected with Him.” Baptism is a symbol of your new life as a Christian.
It is a move from death -the old life of sin, to life, the new life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). As said earlier, baptism is not what makes you a believer, water baptism shows that you are already a believer.
Another important aspect is that when you get baptized, you are in a way also preaching the gospel, without words. As you stand in the water awaiting baptism, you are telling the world that Jesus died on the cross for their sins. When you are dipped in the water, you are telling the world that Christ was buried. And when you are raised from the water, you are showing them that Christ resurrected!
Baptism shows that you are committed to Christ and the Church. It shows that you are ready to fully follow the Lord. It shows also, that you are unashamed of God.
When you get baptized, you receive the blessings of obedience. This is because baptism is an act of obedience to Christ’s command. With every act of obedience, there is a blessing.
When you get baptized, you get connected to the body of Christ on earth. You get to fellowship with the people of God. This is pivotal to your growth as a Christian.
Main 3 Reasons Why Baptism Is Important
We have seen what baptism is and how baptism should be done. We would now be looking at 3 reasons why baptism is important.
Baptism is an essential activity to be performed by believers. Now, you may want to ask, “Why should I get baptized?” or, “What benefit do I gain by getting baptized. Below are 3 reasons why baptism is important
• It is done in Obedience to Christ’s command
• It is a public declaration of our faith in Christ
• It symbolizes the entrance into the Christian family
1. It is Done in Obedience to Christ’s Command
The first reason why you should get baptized is that Christ commanded it. And as a new creature in Christ, you should seek to obey the words and commands of Jesus. Jesus emphasized the importance of water baptism in His parting words as recorded in Matthew 28:19.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
In this Scripture, Jesus was addressing His disciples, and us today, to go out, preach the gospel and baptize the converts. We can see that the early Apostles took this command seriously. For example, Apostle Peter in his sermon at Pentecost
Then Peter said unto them, Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized, and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. (Acts 2:38,41)
Every convert is therefore encouraged to present him or herself for water baptism. Have you gotten saved? Are you now a new creature in Christ? Then it is vital for you to be baptized in obedience to Christ.
2. It is a Public Declaration of our Faith in Christ
Baptism is an act a believer partakes in to publicly commit himself or herself to Christ, and to the people of God. This is the second of the 3 reasons why baptism is important for a new convert.
Let’s look again at the earlier scripture stated in Acts 2:41. We see that the people to whom Peter preached to showed they were now part of the believers by getting baptized.
In the epistle to the Romans, the Holy Spirit through Apostle Paul says that we were baptized into Jesus Christ.
Know ye not, that so many of us that were baptized into Christ were baptized into his death?
Therefore, we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. Romans 6:3-4
In baptism, you are attesting that you believe that Christ died, was buried, and rose again from the dead that you may be justified. This is the hallmark of the Christian faith. See what Apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15
3. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4. And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
14. And if Christ be not risen, then our preaching is vain, and your faith is also vain.
16. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain, ye are yet in your sins.
Therefore, faith in the resurrection power of God is why Christians publicly present themselves for baptism, expressing that faith.
Also, publicly declaring your faith helps to strengthen your faith, and this is good for a new convert. It makes you stronger in Christ and helps you stand firm.
Are you now a disciple of Jesus? then show it to the world by getting baptized!
3. It Symbolizes the Entrance into the Christian Family
Baptism marks the start of a journey of faith with the “body of Christ”. It connects us to the Christian family. 1 Corinthians 12:13 says
For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit
We are all one in Christ, and we need each other in our Christian journey. No one is an Island of grace or knowledge.
Through baptism, the Christian union of togetherness and brotherly love is sealed. Baptism unites us as believers. Paul says in Ephesians 4:4-5
There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called into one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism; One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
When you were a sinner, you were of the world. Now that you are saved, you belong to the Church, and you become a part of the church by baptism. On the day of Pentecost in Acts chapter 2, all those who got saved were baptized and received by the Church.
In baptism, you commit yourself to become a part of God’s people. The Christian life is not to be lived alone. Through baptism, you are now within the communion of God’s loving people.
What To Say When You Get Baptized
As a new convert, when you get baptized, you may be expected to say a few things, or even give a short speech. You may also be told to share your testimony of salvation with the congregation of other believers.
There is no need to be frightened, even if you are naturally a shy person. Just speak from your heart, and you will do just fine. Here are 3 simple tips to help you with what to say when you get baptized.
• Start with a word of appreciation. You should thank those who are present at the ceremony and place emphasis on appreciating special people. Like those who God used to lead you to salvation, your godparents, and others.
• You could also share your salvation experience, as it could serve as a source of encouragement to other people. It will uplift the faith of others as to the saving power of Christ.
• Talk freely with a smile. You could also reiterate your commitment to Christ and to the Church to which you now belong.
Baptism Wishes For Adults From Godparents
Baptism is important in the Christian journey. For a person to be baptized, it means that the person has received the salvation of God, and getting saved is the greatest and most important experience anyone could have.
Baptism shows that a person is now a child of God, and is becoming part of the family of God. How glorious!
Baptism is a special moment both for the person getting baptized and for the godparents too.
The godparents are standing as witnesses. Their role is important during and after the baptism as it is their duty to guide the new convert in the Christian journey.
A good way to start off as a godparent is to send your loved one warm wishes either on a card or as a text or mail. We’ve put together some beautiful baptism wishes that you can use.
• Congratulations beloved! I am glad that I’m experiencing this special day with you. May today be a beautiful memory you always have to hold on to.
• Dear _______, I am so happy to share in your Joy on becoming a part of God’s family. May today bring love, peace, and joy as we celebrate this Holy occasion.
• I am wishing you the very best as you begin this spiritual journey. May you find the strength to always go on and never look back. I love you.
• I’m so excited and happy for you. I pray that today, and always, you will hold on to this gift that you have received from the Lord. Best wishes.
• I am delighted to be your godparent on this special occasion. I’m proud of the young Christian you have begun. May God continually keep you strong in the faith.
• As you make this huge commitment to Christ and the body of Christ, I pray that it marks the beginning of a supernatural turnaround.
• This special day of your baptism marks the beginning of your Christian journey. I pray that day by day, you grow deeper in the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
• May the joy of salvation and the communion of baptism never depart from your life. I pray that today brings everlasting joy and peace to your life. Amen.
• I am still overwhelmed over all that God has done in your life by saving you. You are already growing so fast in Christ already. As you get baptized today, may your life experience a great turnaround in all areas.
• Dear ______, I am so proud of you, and I am so delighted to be your godparent on this your special day as you identify with Christ. Keep walking in His light, and you’ll never regret it.
• As you get baptized today, I pray that you will come to know Christ more and more each day. Let God be your guiding light always. I will also be here to help you through your Christian journey. God bless you.
• Congratulations! I am glad to share this special day with you. Your baptism is the beautiful beginning of this glorious journey. I wish you all the best.
• I am so honored to be a part of your special day. I pray that daily, you feel the warmth of God’s presence around you.
• Congratulations on your baptism. I wish you the very best in this journey. I pray also that your faith grows stronger from day to day, and that you overcome all the temptations of the enemy.
• Dear ________. I am super excited about being a part of your baptism. I love you, but God loves you more. Never forget that.
I believe that going through this article, you have been able to fully understand what baptism is all about. I hope your questions have been answered and your doubts cleared. You have also seen the 3 reasons why baptism is important.
If you are saved, but not yet baptized, do not delay any longer. You can meet up with the leadership of your local church and inform them. If you’re not yet saved, the arms of Christ are ever open to receive you. Just repent from your sins and believe in Him, that He died for your sins, and resurrected to give you a new life. Kindly pray this prayer of salvation to be a part of God’s Family.
Now that you’ve known the 3 reasons why baptism is important, as you partake in this act of baptism, may God pour on you the blessings of obedience.