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Baptism – The Why & The How

If you are thinking about baptism, great!
Baptism is an important act of obedience. It is our public identification with Jesus Christ as our Savior, and with other Christ followers throughout all time and all the world.

What We Believe About Baptism

Who should be baptized?  more…

We believe that the blood of Jesus Christ shed on the cross is the only basis for the forgiveness of our sins. Salvation (you sometimes hear conversion) occurs when we place our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus as sufficient payment for our sin debt. This decision, made through faith, is an act of our God-given free will.

Once saved, we are ready to be, and ought to be, baptized. Married couples show the world their love and commitment to each other by wearing symbolic rings. As followers of Christ, we show our love and commitment to our Lord through the symbol of baptism.

What does baptism symbolize?  more…

Baptism is a public declaration that we have entered into a relationship with Jesus Christ. It symbolizes what took place in our heart at the time of our salvation–

  • We accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior
  • We shared in His death (illustrated by going under the water, and being buried to our old life)
  • We shared in His resurrection (illustrated by coming up out of the water, into a new life)
  • We were washed clean of our sins and forgiven, not by the water of baptism but by the power of His blood shed on the cross

Jesus instructed us to be baptized, so it is an important act of obedience. Baptism is not necessary for salvation, but it shows the world our submission to God and our identification with Jesus as Lord.

What does the word baptism mean?  more…

Baptism is the English version of a Greek word that means dip, immerse, sink, or wash. For this reason, and from both the Biblical and early church descriptions and accounts of baptism, we believe that the proper way to baptize is to immerse completely under the water.

What about baptism of infants or young children?  more…

Some denominations and churches baptize infants or small children, and this is their right. However, we understand that the Bible teaches that baptism is for professing, born-again believers.

Small children cannot understand their sinfulness and need for conversion, nor understand the nature of the gift of salvation offered through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Each person stands personally accountable to God, and must come to salvation through their own faith, by their own response to the Holy Spirit. It is not something parents can do for their children – they must receive it for themselves.

Children each reach an age when they come to this understanding, and can receive the gift of salvation through the power of the Holy Spirit working in their lives. Then, they can be baptized. If you believe your child is ready, we will have your child speak to a trained children's decision counselor.

What if I have already been baptized? Does that count?  more…

We accept as valid a baptism performed, after your salvation, by another church of similar belief and practice. Talk to us about it.

The Baptism Process

Your Decision  more…

We speak with each candidate to make sure they fully understand salvation, and have a relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

  • Adults speak to a pastor or decision counselor. This is often done after a Sunday worship gathering, but we can also arrange an appointment in the office. Call us during the week at 904-777-1238 or email Ministry Pastor Hal Hunter
  • Teens speak to Youth Pastor David C. Bass, Middle School Pastor Justin Kennedy, or a member of the Youth Ministry Team
  • Children speak to Children's Ministry Director Kaleigh Kennedy, or a trained children's decision counselor

We spend as much time as needed to answer your questions and make sure you fully understand this important decision. We arrange to record your baptism video and discuss specific details – what to wear, where to be when, and what to expect.

What about the video? Is it important? Is it necessary?  more…

We think it is very important. It allows you to–

  • Introduce yourself to other members in the Body of Christ at Argyle
  • Have the opportunity to share what God is doing in your life
  • Encourage others who are in the process of deciding about accepting salvation and being baptized themselves

If you have serious misgivings about the video, speak to us before you decide. Even people who were nervous at first speak highly of the experience afterwards and they understand how simple it is and how powerful it is for everyone who sees it. But, we will not be legalistic – everyone who has been saved and wants to be baptized will be.

What Now?  more…

Speak to someone – a pastor, a ministry leader, or call the office at 904-777-1238. Pastor Rick invites people with questions or spiritual decisions to come forward after each worship gathering. He or one of the Prayer Team members can speak to you then, or make an appointment so you can come to the office for a more relaxed conversation.

The important thing is – if God is speaking to you through the Holy Spirit, listen to Him and respond. It is natural to have questions or be nervous. We understand; we will do everything possible to answer your questions, address your concerns, and put you at ease.