Water Baptism is an outward declaration of a decision in your heart to follow Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord of your life. Not only does the Bible command us to be baptized, but Jesus himself was water baptized. We are simply following his example in doing the same. It’s one way we can literally live like Jesus lived. It is the next step after meeting Jesus personally! Baptism is going public about your faith in Jesus and communicating to the world your heart-felt commitment to following Him. Like a wedding ring is to a marriage, the metal or gems don’t make your marriage. They are just a reminder that you are bound together with your spouse. Baptism is the same idea - it doesn’t save you, but it’s a public symbol that you are bound to Jesus Christ. It's your next step after salvation.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Who should get baptized?
Anyone who has made the decision to eagerly follow Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior is encouraged to get baptized.
Why should I get baptized?
Actions speak louder than words and being baptized is a symbolic action that boldly declares, “I worship and serve Jesus Christ!” Jesus instructs us to be baptized & sets the example for us. (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 1:9)
The Bible says if we love Jesus, we will follow Him (1 John 2:3). We like to say Jesus went public for us on the cross, so we can go public for him. Baptism shows we are dying to our old self and starting a new life with Jesus who is making us more like Him every day. (Acts 2:38-41)
When is the best time to get baptized?
Baptism is the next step after deciding to follow Jesus. Anyone who commits his or her life to following Jesus is ready to be baptized. (Acts 8:12)
Can I still go to Heaven if I don't get baptized?
Absolutely. Confessing your sins to God and proclaiming Jesus as your Lord and Savior are what get you into Heaven. Baptism is simply the next step in living out your Christian faith.
Where is water baptism found in the Bible?
As his name implies, John the Baptist went about calling people to repentance and baptizing them in order to prepare the way for the coming of his cousin Jesus. We see in Mark 1 and Matthew 3 that Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River by John before he ever began His ministry. Later, in Acts 8:26-39, we read an account of Philip baptizing a man that the Spirit had led him to speak to. These are just a few examples, but obviously there is a Biblical backing for baptism.
Do you baptize children?
At Searchlight we do not baptize children. Here is why: faith is a personal decision and one that we can’t make for anyone else. Parents can point their kids to Jesus, loved ones can show the love of Christ to their family, but ultimately everyone decides who they will choose to worship. An individual must make the choice themselves. (Romans 10:9) Infant baptisms are meaningful for parents and those who attend, but the child has no idea what is going on. In the Bible, baptism always follows a person's decision to trust Jesus (Acts 10:47-48), so at Searchlight we wait until a person is old enough to understand what baptism means and express their own decision to follow Jesus.
How do you baptize?
All of the baptisms in the Bible were by immersion. Jesus was baptized by immersion. Even the Greek word means “submerged,” so that’s how we do it. Submersion in water also best symbolizes the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). In baptism we join Jesus in symbolically dying to sin and coming out of the water to a new fresh start in life. (Romans 6:3-5)