What is Baptism?
We read about Jesus coming to John, to be baptized. John recognizes that Jesus is greater than he and wants to refuse Christ saying that he should be baptized by Christ, not the other way around. And Jesus tells John that he must be baptized to ‘fulfill all righteousness.’
We are told that Christ was the great High Priest and so we can look back at the high priests of Israel in the Old Testament and learn much about Christ as they were a foreshadowing of His coming. When Aaron was first ordained to be high priest by Moses, he first had to clean himself with water. After this, there was a sacrifice. Blood was put on the ear of the priest. Then anointing oil was placed on the ear. There was a cleansing, anointing with blood, and anointing with oil.
The cleansing represents repentance. It is a renouncement of sin. Blood represents the sacrifice of Christ on the cross which covers the sin of all who repent. And the oil represented the Holy Spirit. Christ was baptized foreshadowed by the washing of the priests though He had nothing to repent of. He was the sacrifice as represented by the blood on the ear. And the Holy Spirit came in the form of a dove represented by the oil.
Thus, ceremony of baptism is linked to the priestly ceremony recognizing a man into the priesthood. When we are baptized, it represents that we have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior and that we are now part of the priesthood of Christ that we might serve Him. The priesthood is the Church. You are now part of the family of Christ.
When should I be baptized?
We believe that baptism is a symbol of the salvation you have already received making you part of the church and part of the family. (See side notes). When you accept Christ, you are now part of the family of God. Baptism represents your decision to accept Christ as your Lord and Savior. You should be baptized as a public proclamation of putting your faith in Christ after accepting Him as your Lord and Savior.
I have already been baptized. Do I need to be baptized again?
If you were baptized after praying to accept Christ as your Lord and Savior on your own, you should be baptized. If you were baptized earlier in life when you did not really understand the meaning, it is good to be baptized again as a symbol of your decision and not the decision of your parents when you were young.
You may also want to be baptized if you feel like after coming to Christ you departed from Him, but have now made a new commitment to follow Him. Baptism is a public proclamation of our decision to follow Christ and there is nothing wrong with making that statement marking a renewal of your relationship with Him.
What happens during Baptism?
During the Baptism ceremony, you will enter the water with the Pastor. A testimony (your own story of how you came to the point of accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior) that you have written in advance. After this the Pastor will pray for you. And then the Pastor will lay you back into the water until fully immersed and then lift you out of the water again. After much celebration by the church family, you will depart from the water.
What do I need to do to be baptized?
The first step is to have accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior through prayer. If you have not done this, please contact Pastor Lee or a Christian friend who may have invited you to CrossRoads. Second, you must make it known that you desire to be baptized. This is best done via the Connect Cards. After signing up, you will receive information such as this sheet. Then email Pastor Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call the office (210.623-4500) and let the office know you desire to be baptized. If you are wanting to be baptized on a regular Baptism Sunday that has been promoted, the Connect Card will be enough. If you are wanting to be baptized at a different time, you must contact Pastor Lee or the church office.
What do I need on the day of my baptism?
You will need to fill out your testimony using the form below. You will need comfortable, modest clothes. White shirts are not recommended because they may be transparent when wet. You will also need a towel and a change of clothes. Please arrive at the church no later than 10am to meet with Pastor Lee.