Church Basics Series
Christian Ministry Resource
What's the big deal about baptism?
Jesus commands his disciples to be baptized, and it’s a glorious picture of a person’s union with Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. Still, many Christians feel unclear about the topic, having more questions than answers. This short work provides a biblical explanation of baptism. What is it? Who should be baptized? Why is it required for church membership? And how should churches practice baptism?
After reading this short text I think the reader will not only come away with a greater understanding of baptism but also a more precise understanding of the role of the church in the act. I read the book aloud to my husband on a recent road trip and it sparked some interesting and in depth conversations.
"Baptism is a church's act of affirming and portraying a believer's union with Christ by immersing him or her in water, and a believer's act of publicly committing him or herself to Christ and his people,thereby uniting a believer to the church and marking off him or her from the world. In baptism, a believer commits to God's people and God's people commit to that believer. Therefore, where a church exists, baptism should confer church membership. The church doing the baptizing should, by that very act, be inducting this new believer into their number. Baptism isn't just a prerequisite to church membership; normally, baptism begins church membership. Church membership is the house, and baptism is the front door." (pg.67)
I think this would make a wonderful resource for small groups or even Sunday or Wednesday night services where most of the participants are believers. I think often a person is saved and then proceeds to baptism (or not) without the knowledge of what that signifies both to the person being baptized and the body of believers (the church). With that in mind I highly recommend this book to church leadership with the hope that they will then share it with their membership.