Baptism - West Ridge Church

We believe baptism is an exciting part of a believer’s journey. It’s a public profession saying you follow Jesus, and it’s a chance for our church to celebrate your faith with you.

 

 


 

FAQs About Baptisms

 

 

What happens when I sign up to get baptized?


When you register, you will be contacted to set up an appointment to meet with a baptism team member to share your salvation experience. During your meeting, you will be able to ask any questions that you may have about baptism and set your baptism date. Children and students (up to 12th grade) will be contacted to attend an upcoming baptism class or if they have already attended, will set up a baptism date.

 


 

What is water baptism?


It is a spiritually meaningful, symbolic ceremony that publicly shows our desire to obey God and to follow Jesus.

 


 

Why do we baptize?


Jesus commanded us to baptize (Matthew 28:19-20), and we are following His example when we do it (Mark 1:9). It is a symbol of how we were spiritually buried with Him and raised for new life when we accepted His salvation.

 


 

Is baptism a part of salvation?


No. We are saved by faith and God’s grace, not by any religious works (Ephesians 2:8-9). Baptism is to salvation what a wedding ceremony is to a marriage. The wedding doesn’t legally make anyone married- that happens by the signing of a marriage license as witnessed by a church leader or court official. Baptism, like a wedding ceremony, is a public display of our love for someone- in this case, Jesus!

 


 

Why is baptism done publicly?


Almost all of the biblical examples of baptism show people doing it in public (Acts 2:41), because we are not to be ashamed of Jesus when we have become Christians. We should want to share our joyous decision with family, friends, and our church.

 


 

Why do we baptize by immersion?


As we read the New Testament, we see people being taken down into water and brought back up (Matthew 3:16, Acts 8:38-39). The Greek word ‘baptizo’ means to immerse. Immersion is a picture of being buried and raised to new life in salvation (Romans 6:4). This is not a major doctrinal issue with us- we are more concerned with our hearts’ condition with Jesus. But, we want to practice scripture as closely as we understand it.

 


 

Who can baptize?

 

In the New Testament, we usually see church leaders baptizing (John 4:1-2, Acts 10:47-48, 16:33). Our pastors baptize, and will often invite lay ministers and family members to participate.

 


 

How soon should I be baptized?


In the New Testament, we see people being baptized immediately after salvation, as a first and public step of obedience to Jesus (Acts 2:41, 8:38-39, 10:47-48). We would encourage you to be baptized as close as possible to your date of salvation. There is no scriptural reason for waiting.

 


 

What if I was baptized before getting saved?


Since baptism is the first step of obedience after salvation, the first time may have been a well-meant, but only religious activity. We would invite you to be baptized again as a new Christian.

 


 

What if I was not immersed for baptism?


Although the method of baptism is not a major doctrine to us, we do desire to practice the pattern found in the New Testament. So, we would invite you to be baptized by immersion.

 


 

How often can I be baptized?


In the New Testament, baptism is seen as a first-step, one-time ceremony. Since it is not a magical action that brings salvation or makes us closer to God, we would encourage you to not confuse yourself or others by being baptized more than once.

 


 

Should infants be baptized?


Although scripture shows Jesus welcoming and blessing children, it does not show Him baptizing infants, nor are there any passages that show or command this practice. Since baptism is a step of obedience after salvation, and since (due to mental development) infants cannot make that spiritual choice, we do not baptize them. We do, however, dedicate infants to the Lord (1 Samuel 1:27-28). This is a special commitment ceremony where the parents and the church pledge together to spiritually nurture the infant as he or she grows, and we pray for their eventual salvation.

 


 

Can children/students be baptized?


In the New Testament, new converts to Christianity are those who were baptized. If a child has understood and accepted salvation, then there is no reason that they should not be baptized. We ask children and students (up to 12th grade) to attend the “Splash Class” or “Student Baptism Class” where we educate them on the meaning of baptism before they get baptized.

 


 

What is the history of baptism?


John the Baptist began preaching for people to repent, and to show that inward heart change through an outward action. He baptized people at the Jordan River until he introduced Jesus as the Messiah. Jesus’ disciples continued the practice of baptism, Jesus commanded all of His followers to practice it, and the first churches in the book of Acts practiced it. It has been an ordinance of Christ’s church since then until today.

 


 

What happens during baptism?


You will arrive 20 minutes before service for check-in and a brief orientation. Please wear dark shorts and a dark t-shirt. Baptism is normally held at the beginning of the service (subject to change). You will be asked to step into the baptism tub where the pastor will briefly state your salvation experience, and then you will be dipped into the water and quickly raised back up, symbolizing Jesus’ death and resurrection.

 

Getting baptized takes just 3 easy steps

1. Fill out the form.
2. Connect with one of our pastors. If you’re under 18, attend our baptism class just for your age.
3. Get baptized as our church celebrates your public commitment to Jesus.