Most people have cool baptism testimonies…mine’s not all that exciting.
But that’s ok!
I’d seen people baptised in church, but I had no clue why they did it. Getting drenched in front of the whole church seemed a bit embarrassing.
When my church was announcing the baptism service for Easter, I asked my youth pastor what the point of it is. She said, “firstly, Jesus commands it,” and I was sold. Here’s the testimony I gave on Easter Sunday, 2017.
I didn’t understand the significance of baptism, but after researching and questioning I decided I had better do it.
Short and sweet. There’s a bit more, but I’m saving it until the end. Basically, I had no option when I realised what baptism was about.
1. Jesus was baptised.
Leading by example, Jesus said that “it is proper” for him to be baptised, despite John’s hesitance. In this way, he is “fulfilling all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15) for our sake. Jesus didn’t need baptism, but he did it to show us how it’s done.
2. Jesus commands us to get baptised
The Great Commission says “baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19) I feel like this part of the commission gets overlooked. Who said we could just leave it out? As disciples are made, naturally, shouldn’t the next step be to baptise them, showing everyone they now follow Jesus?
3. Baptism acknowledges the presence of the kingdom
Jesus’ message was that “the kingdom of God is here” (Matthew 4:17). Baptism shows we are a part of the kingdom and not of this world. As people are baptised, it is like God is growing his kingdom one by one. Pretty cool, I reckon!
4. Everyone else was baptised
This is one of the few times where it is okay to do what everyone else is doing. It was normal in Jesus’ day that if you became a Christian, the next thing to do was to get baptised. I love how at Pentecost, 3000 people were baptised straight after Peter’s sermon (Acts 2:41). This way, it’s a group commitment, as well as a personal one.
I always viewed baptism as a ritual for the really spiritual people. If I’d known earlier what it was about, I’d have done it straight away. Imagine how powerful baptism would be if all new Christians were baptised straight away!
I believe as long as you’ve truly received Jesus and are willing to follow him, you should be baptised. If you’re confused about it, ask someone to explain it to you – you shouldn’t be confused or disillusioned. The best thing to do is read about it in the Word (Matthew 3 is a good place to start).
The rest of my testimony was a quote from David Dawson’s Explaining Water Baptism, which summarises it perfectly:
“For baptism is neither optional nor peripheral to the Christian life. It is fundamental to our personal relationship with the Lord Jesus and therefore, to our eternal salvation.”