What is Baptism?
At Lincoln Berean, we believe that baptism is a public declaration of and identification with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection signified by immersion in water, intended to reflect an internal decision of faith to trust Jesus alone for salvation.
Our adult baptism class is designed to teach the theology behind the practice of water baptism.
If you are not able to take this class before a baptism service, we encourage you to seek out someone on staff to walk with you through this process.
– We believe that water baptism is a public witness intended to reflect an internal decision of faith to trust Jesus alone for salvation.
– We do not believe the Bible teaches that baptism is a necessary work for salvation, but rather it bears witness that salvation has already been experienced.
– We believe salvation is not by works or religious rituals, but is simply received when we embrace Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection for our sins.
– We believe that baptism by immersion most clearly reenacts the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus which we identify with as believers.
- With Christ in His death, burial and resurrection
- With the body of Christ, the church
Baptism sets forth the fact that we died and were buried with Christ. We died unto sin (Rom. 6:6-7) and are raised with Him and share His risen life (v. 4).
Baptism also sets forth the fact that the Holy Spirit has baptized (placed) us into the body of Christ. In that Body each believer has a special function. “One Body, many members” (I Cor. 12:12-14).
Pronouncement as a disciple of Jesus Christ and fellow laborer in a local church.
It is not a part of our salvation, but the first major step in discipleship. Salvation is totally by grace through faith. It is a free gift of God to all who will believe on Christ and receive Him (Eph. 2:8-9; John 1:12; John 3:16).
It is the one specific way in which we are to publicly confess Christ before others, identifying ourselves with a local body of believers. It cost the early Christians a great deal to identify with local believers. Sometimes it cost their lives (Acts 7:58-60).
We should be baptized because our Lord was (Matt. 3:13-17).
It symbolized the great redemptive work He was to do at Calvary in dying, being buried and raised from the dead. It identified Him with lost sinners in His death, even though He was sinless. He established an example for us to follow; in being identified with Him as His disciples.
We should be baptized because our Lord commanded us to do so (Matt. 28:19-20).
We should be baptized because the early church did so (Acts 2:41).
We ought to practice it since it was taught in the Gospel, practiced in the book of Acts and expounded upon in the Epistles.
In the Bible, it was always those who, of their own will, responded to the Gospel. This is why we refer to it as “believer’s baptism”. It is for those who have trusted Jesus Christ as their Sin-Bearer and Savior.
Why do we dedicate children rather than baptize them?
Our belief from the Bible is that baptism is a public witness intended to reflect an internal decision of faith to trust Jesus alone for salvation. Therefore, baptism is to be pursued by those who, of their own free will, have experienced God’s salvation. We do not believe an infant is capable of such a decision, and we see no evidence from the Scriptures that babies were baptized.
We dedicate our children to God as a testimony of our dependence upon God and of our belief that our children ultimately belong to God. We, as parents, are stewards of God’s treasure and are called to raise our children in a way that is pleasing to Him. We also, as a body of believers, dedicate ourselves to partner with parents to raise this generation of children to love God and serve Him.
Interested in having your child dedicated? Learn More: Kids
The meaning of the word Baptizo is to dip, immerse or submerge. The word was not translated, but rather transliterated into English. Baptizo = Baptize. The word for sprinkle is Rhantizo, and it is always translated to sprinkle, as in the sprinkling of the blood.
We should be baptized in the way the early church did. Acts 8:38 says, “Both went down into the water. . . ” Acts 8:39 says, “and when they came up out of the water…”
If baptism signifies burial, there is no other way to baptize than by immersion in water to remain true to scripture. All who have truly trusted Christ as Savior should, out of love for Him and in obedience to His Word, be baptized by immersion. We urge you to do so.
Ready to be Baptized?
If you’re ready to be baptized, please click the button below to start the process.
You will be asked to fill out a form—once completed, a Lincoln Berean staff member will contact you with more information.
Not quite ready to start the process? Have questions? Fill out our form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.