Having grown up in the Catholic faith, baptism was a big deal. Once someone has a baby they bring him or her to be baptized. The priest sprinkles holy water on the babies forehead and the baptism is complete. This can also be done with adults. There is another technique of baptism where a person's whole body is dunked in water. This technique is popular with the Baptists. A lot of people think that once they are baptized, they are saved and going to heaven. That may be why the Catholics like to do it to babies, to ensure their salvation as soon as possible.
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
People will reference the above verses and many others, as a reason to get baptized with water for salvation. These verses are not actually talking about a water baptism. They refer to the baptism of the holy spirit, that a person receives upon believing that Jesus Christ died for their sins. Repentance is also taken out of context. Most people teach repentance as turning from sin, while the bible teaches that it is a change of mind. For example, I didn't believe that Jesus was God and he died for my sins, and now I believe.
There are two kinds of baptism, one is by water and the other is by the Holy Spirit. One can get you to heaven and the other is merely symbolic. When a person believes that Jesus Christ died for their sins and rose from the dead, they are indwelled with the Holy Spirit. This is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, where God comes to live inside of you. The other baptism is by water and it is symbolic of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This baptism can not save you.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
In this verse John the Baptist explains the difference between the two baptisms. John the Baptist was doing full immersion baptisms where a person whole body is dunked in water. This was a forerunner to the coming of Christ and symbolized his death, burial, and resurrection. John did water baptism the right way. The Catholics like to sprinkle "holy water" (whatever that means). The water is no holier than the water in your sink. This sprinkling symbolizes nothing and has no redeeming power.
I Corinthians 12
13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
Baptism by water should by done after a person has believed on Christ for their salvation. What water Baptism does is show the world that a person is saved. It is a symbol that a persons sins have died with Christ and a new person is resurrected out of the water. This should provoke a person to live a Godly life moving forward. God is pleased when a believer is baptized. This baptism however is not a guarantee that a person will live a sanctified life and stop habitually sinning against God. Again this baptism is merely symbolic. Once a person is baptized, they should really make a commitment to serving God. The baptism should mean something to them.
I have not been baptized since becoming a believer. It is something that I would like to get taken care of within the next year. In no way is baptism by water ever required of a Christian. A person is saved regardless of weather or not they have been water baptized. However, if you want God to work in your life and bless you, it might be a good idea to get baptized in water.
26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
I hope you enjoyed this article. If you are not a Christian, I invite you to get saved now. Tomorrow may be to late. To get saved all you have to do, is admit that you are a sinner and that Jesus Christ died for your sins. The only way to take away sins is with the pure shed blood of Jesus Christ. Good works can not take away sins. If they could, then Jesus Christ died in vain. Jesus died, was buried, and rose from the dead as payment for all sins. Once you believe that, you are saved forever. You did nothing to earn it and you can do nothing to lose it.
5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.