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What Would You Tell Someone Who Just Got Baptized?

On August 18th our church is planning to baptize about 12 people.  We will gather on the shore of the Black Sea at 8:30 am where we will hold a short service and do the baptism.

After the baptism we plan to head back to our church facility (about 15 mins away) where we will hold our usually Sunday morning service. This will include prayer for everyone who was baptized, their first communion and an exhortation from God’s Word.
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I will be preaching that Sunday, preaching to a dozen people who have just publicly made a statement of their faith.

This is a critical time in their young lives as followers of Jesus. I want them to hear clearly from God’s Word, to comprehend the greatness of the salvation which they have received, to understand their new life in Christ, to grasp what it means to follow Jesus.

The responsibility placed on me to convey a message from God’s Word humbles me in times like this. I’m not at all confident in my own abilities to communicate truth that is pure and un-muddied by the impurities of my own heart. I am however, confident that God can and does use the imperfect to perfectly fulfill His will!

Today I’m meditating and praying as I read God’s Word. These are the questions I’m asking.

  • What parts of the gospel do I need to be reminded of?
  • Why did Jesus tell us to baptize in the first place, what difference does it make?
  • What are the most vital truths for those who have just been baptized to understand?
  • How can I communicate those truths in a way that will be clear, passionate and memorable?
  • What does the rest of the church need to be reminded of and exhorted in concerning these new believers?

I’d like to have you help me in this process, so here are some questions you can answer in the comment sections below.

If you’ve been baptized:

  • What things were said at your baptism that you found especially important or useful?
  • What things were not said that you wish you would have known about?

If you’ve not been baptized:

  • What questions might you still have about baptism?
  • What is the main reason keeping you from baptism?

 

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I am a pastor, missionary, and preacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Ukraine since 2007. God blessed me with a wonderful wife and 5 amazing children! My greatest passion is to teach, encourage, and exhort others to turn to Jesus, who is Savior, Lord, and God!

  • Profound questions…just prayed that God would guide you and give you wisdom as you seek to answer these pivotal questions.

    As to my own baptism…it was so many years ago, I really can’t remember anything standing out except how happy I was. Also how ignorant I was to spiritual warfare. Thankfully I had great people to mentor me and teach me about how to read God’s word, to listen to His voice and to do what is right instead of what is easy.
    I think far too many people do receive adequate discipleship training. Being saved and baptized is the first part, not the ending- like so many seem to think.

    • You’re so right, baptism is really the beginning of a journey or at least it should be. Spiritual warfare is something that each Christian will face and needs to know how to fight it. Thanks for the input!

  • I would only have one word: Congratulations!!

    Then I would probably tell them no matter what: cling to God.

    I’m so glad to hear about the baptisms 🙂

    • Yes, we will tell them “congratulations”! Great advice too about clinging to God. I think it’s important for all believers to realize that our strength must be continually found in God. When we start trying to do it all on our own is when we start failing.

  • I was 8 y/o Caleb. That is like 100 years ago. Okay, more like 52. I certainly can’t remember although I do remember never receiving a visit or an explanation. I was left on my own. Today, I would try to tell them how important it is to get plugged in somewhere, somehow. I also need to do a better job of getting someone to mentor and spend time with people.

    • Bill, you have the privilege of following Jesus for much longer than I have! I agree, getting plugged in is vital, thanks for the advice!

  • I was baptized as a young child but don’t remember anything I said or was thinking. I’ve been thinking about getting baptized again. I’ll be praying for you and the service.

    • The general practice here is to baptize no earlier than 15-16 years old. Of course, there’s no Biblical text that gives us a cut-off age, however we do know that all baptisms in the Bible were of adults. I was baptized young, 6 I think! I remember it and I’m convinced that I believed at the time, however, I also think it would have been wise to wait a few years. It’s hard to know if a 6 year old really understands the gospel and whether or not their decision is more the influence of the their parents or truly a personal decision to follow Jesus.

      Thanks for your prayers Dan, we appreciate it!

  • What things were said at your baptism that you found especially important or useful? not much was said at my baptism; it was a prayer, baptism, and greeting by the congregation

    What things were not said that you wish you would have known about? I would like to have understood more about the reason for baptism and why it was important. I went to the altar to accept Jesus at a revival as a young person of 11-13. My family did not go to church and I did not get much of an opportunity to learn about biblical teaching. When I started going to church in my 20s, I learned I needed to be baptized to join the church. I have subsequently learned more about baptism, but it would have been nice to have known more of the why I was baptized at the time.

    • Phil, thanks for sharing. I also believe it’s important that people understand the reason and significance of baptism. I hope all our baptismal candidates understand that already. Most of them have been in a baptismal preparation class for the past few months and they have all been interviewed by the pastors of our church. Either way it’s good to repeat those reasons often both for the sake of those who were baptized and for the sake of everyone else in the church.

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Jeremy Wilson

    Don’t forget what you feel right now. don’t get comfortable in your walk. Being apathetic leads to spiritual atrophy. Don’t wither. Don’t get our of spiritual shape. Find a Paul who will pour their life into you, a Barnabas to continue with you, and a Timothy to pour yourself into.

    • Nice! I like how you use the 3 men in different ways! Thanks for the advice!

  • Oh man, that was a while ago – no chance of me remembering what was preached, haha. But if I were preaching at a baptism service, I’d probably preach something about the long-term process of Christianity – the idea that it’s a marathon not a sprint, that there will be peaks and valleys, and the final destination we have!

    • Well, I ended up preaching mainly from Mat 28:19-20 My main point was that the church is called to “make disciples” everyone who has been baptized and is a follower of Jesus also needs to be a disciple maker.

  • Amy_E

    At our inside public baptizing service, after my pastor baptized me, he said, “Walk with the Lord, Amy.” I had those words inscribed on my Bible. I’ve held onto those words during every trial since June 1988.

    I wish I would have known the below struggle was going happen – that is/was a natural part of the process when you become a true believer.

    From the time I was baptized and a few weeks later, I was really struggling in my new Christian faith. I knew I made the right decision but couldn’t understand why all of a sudden it was so hard. I asked for a certain staff person from my church to call me. She told me that since I’d given my life to Jesus, Satan was still going to pursue me even harder to get me to change my mind. She recommended some reading in Matthew and the book, “The Fight,” by John White.

    Because I trusted her role in our church and the counsel was sound, I did what she said. Afterward, I was better equipped for this spiritual battle and after awhile it was over.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Fight-Practical-Handbook-Christian/dp/0877847770/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1400516438&sr=8-1&keywords=john+white+the+fight

    • That’s awesome what a great thing for your pastor to write! I’m glad that you were in a good church that could encourage you in your walk with The Lord!