Baptism

"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Amen." Matthew 28:19-20

"Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about 3,000 souls were added to them." Acts 2:41

Baptism is an important step of obedience for believers. If you've been saved through faith in Jesus Christ, baptism is your next step!

Scriptural baptism has a prerequisite: Salvation.

"Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about 3,000 souls were added to them." Acts 2:41

"But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done." Acts 8:12-13

At Harvester, we wait until our children are old enough to believe and understand the true meaning of baptism before we baptize them.

Some churches practice a 'baptism of confirmation' for children. This ceremony is intended to be a covenant between the parents and God on behalf of the child. The parents promise to raise their child in the faith until the child is old enough to make his own personal confession of Christ. This custom began about 300 years after the Bible was completed. This is different from the baptism talked about in the Bible, which was only for those old enough to believe. The purpose is to publicly confess your personal commitment to Christ.

At Harvester, it is a membership requirement that every member must have been baptized the way Jesus demonstrated, even though many of us were 'confirmed' as children.

Scriptural baptism also has a proper procedure: Immersion.

Why?

  1. Because Jesus was baptized that way.
    "As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water." Matthew 3:16
  2. Every baptism in the Bible was by immersion.
    "...Then both Philip and the man went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water..." Acts 8:38-39
  3. The word 'baptize' means to immerse in or dip in water.
  4. It symbolizes a burial and resurrection.
    "For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again on the third day according to the scriptures." 1 Corinthians 15:3-4
    "...buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead." Colossians 2:12
    "Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." Romans 6:4

Frequently Asked Questions

  • When should I be baptized?

    "Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about 3,000 souls were added to them." Acts 2:41
    "Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, 'See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?' Then Philip said, 'If you believe with all your heart, you may.' And he answered and said, 'I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.' So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him." Acts 8:35-38
  • Can my family be baptized together?

    Yes! If each family member understands fully the meaning of baptism, and each one has personally placed his/her trust in Christ for salvation, we encourage families to be baptized at the same time. It is a wonderful expression of commitment. Everyone who wishes to be baptized is asked to meet with a pastor for a pre-baptism conversation.

    However, it is important to remember that baptism is a personal statement of faith, not a family tradition. It is usually not wise to delay your baptism while waiting on other family members to accept Christ, particularly children. This puts an undue pressure on them, and delays your obedience.

  • What should I wear?

    Both men and women should wear a swimming suit and t-shirt that will be worn under the robe provided by the church. Bring a change of clothes, a comb, and a plastic bag for your wet clothes. A towel, hair dryer, and changing room will be provided.

If you'd like to dig a little deeper, watch this message from Pastor Bob on baptism. If you'd like to speak with somebody about baptism, please send us an email.