Water baptism is a step of obedience to God. In Acts, Jesus commanded his disciples to “Repent and be baptized.” People who have repented of their sins and accepted Jesus as their LORD and Savior need to take the next step – water baptism. Baptism is a public declaration of the commitment you have made to Jesus Christ.
Baptism will occur at the beginning of the 8:30 AM Sunday service. We encourage you to invite family and friends. Please be at Pentecostal Tabernacle by 8:00 AM on that Sunday. Be prepared to give a brief (two minute) testimony. It is recommended that you have your testimony in written form.
To help you develop an effective testimony, begin to write out simple, brief responses on an index card or small piece of paper:
It is recommended that you write out your thoughts onto a note card and read your testimony from this card at the baptism service. This can be helpful if you are not used to speaking in front of an audience. Always keep your testimony positive by focusing on good things the Lord has done for you rather than bad things others have done. Avoid specific negative references to individuals or groups so that you can keep the emphasis on God and His faithfulness! Remember to keep it brief-one or two minutes at most. A few well-chosen words can have a powerful impact!
We will meet in downstairs in the fellowship hall the day of the service. Please be there at 8:00 am.
Water Baptism is one of two ordinances* in the Christian Church. It is the ceremony of entrance into the Church. It symbolizes the death of the old sinful life and birth of the new life in Christ. When we invited Jesus Christ to be our Lord and Saviour, God cleansed us by His Holy Spirit with the blood of Jesus Christ. Water Baptism portrays this act. It is a sign of what has been done. Water Baptism does not provide forgiveness for, or cleanse away sin. Baptize is the English form of the Greek word “baptizo” that is derived from the word “bapto” meaning “to dip” or “immerse”. It is a ceremonial or symbolic cleansing of a person in both the Jewish and Christian church. In both cases it is usually administered as a rite of induction into the faith.
*Ordinance is an authoritative command or direction; decree of god; a governmental statute, regulation or law; religious rite or ceremony.
There are three types of baptism mentioned in the scriptures.
Converts were immersed up to their neck, and read the Law (Word of God; Holy Scriptures). Afterwards they were plunged beneath the water as a sign of being cleansed from the defilement of heathenism and the beginning of a new life as a member of God’s covenant people. (Exodus 19:10-14; Leviticus 8:6; Mark 7:3-4; Hebrews 9:10)
John the Baptist called the people to repent for their sinful nature (actions and attitudes) and be baptized to prepare themselves to receive “the Kingdom of God” Jesus Christ (Luke 3:3; Isaiah 40:3). His job was to prepare the people to receive “THE WORD OF GOD” incarnate, Jesus Christ, in order that the seed of the WORD would have fertile soil to germinate, grow and bring forth fruit. Many of the religious leaders were offended by this request, since the law and tradition only required baptism of gentiles.
Similar to the Jewish baptism, this is a ceremony performed on converts. It symbolizes the death burial and resurrection of the Jesus Christ and the believer (Romans 6:1-4). Water baptism is to the believer as marriage is to someone who is engaged. When a person gets married it is usually a very elaborate and public ceremony. When the vows are exchanged the bride and the groom do not fall in love with each other, at that moment. There was a personal relationship that developed privately over time! The wedding ceremony symbolizes the love and the bond of unity that evolved between the couple and culminated in their commitment to each other. It is a display of the love that grew privately but is ready for public presentation.
Baptism is a sacred drama or advertisement portraying:
The new birth experience is described as a washing (bath) in Titus 3:5; Sins and the defilement of the old life have been washed away.
It shows a spiritual identity and union with Christ (marriage); Christ died for sin so that man could die to sin; Christ rose from the dead that we might have new life (a righteous life in him).
Death to sin; burial via submersion; resurrection to new life in Christ via emerging (Romans 6:1-4).
Baptism should be a public display of what has taken place in private (Galatians 3:27). It is a formal public announcement of your allegiance to Jesus Christ and His Kingdom.