What is Baptism?

The decision to get baptized is an awesome one. It represents one of the most important steps of faith we can make. But how does the process start?

To help answer questions people may have about it, our story team recently sat down with Roman. He’s one of our online care pastors who supports and guides people who are thinking about baptism.

We were also able to hear from Cristina who was recently baptized about why she wanted to take the step and what it meant to her.

Check out their stories below!

Roman Talks ‘What is Baptism’

Being baptized is an incredible picture that symbolizes the spiritual rebirth that has happened to a person who has decided to follow Jesus and Him only. It’s beautiful and very much a joyful moment that we get to share with God and with those around us.

For those who have decided to trust in Jesus and to follow Him with their whole lives, being baptized is one of the next steps of faith! This can sometimes seem intimidating at first for a variety of reasons. If you are wanting to get baptized, we highly encourage you to take our What is Baptism class that will greatly inform you about what being baptized means.

You may still have specific questions about baptism! There is no shame in asking questions because many people have questions about baptism. We encourage you to ask those questions at What is Baptism! We host this class every 1st Sunday night of the month. Currently, this class is being done over zoom at 8pm.

During the class you can expect to hear in-depth knowledge concerning baptism that is found in the Bible. This is important because we want to better equip you with the biblical understanding of baptism! If we have a quick conversation, it’d be nearly impossible to talk about without missing crucial aspects, so our goal is to be intentional by providing class.

One question that is often asked is “Can anyone attend the class?”. Absolutely! Whether you have placed your faith in Christ yesterday or years ago, it doesn’t matter! We’d love for you to attend because if you haven’t considered getting baptized yet, there is no reason to wait! If you have placed your faith in Chris, you are ready to be baptized! That is amazing news because you don’t have to reach some level or acquire any other prerequisite.

Often, people ask or think things like, “Well… I think I need to mature in my faith or grow in my relationship with God just a little bit more… And then I’ll get baptized. Does that seem right?” My answer to that is no. God doesn’t require any other qualifications other than trusting in Him to be your Lord and Savior. Another common question that people ask is, “Do I need to be baptized to be saved?”. The answer to that one is a big no. The physical act of being baptized does not save you. From what we read in the Bible, we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus and in him alone.

There are also many times when people come to me and say that they were already baptized as a baby. If you told me that today, what I’d say to you is that I’m glad that your parents wanted the best for you. I have no doubt that they wanted you to have a relationship with God and to be raised in the church. They wanted good for you. But as we read the Bible, we believe the scriptures make it clear that being baptized is something that only people who have put their faith in Christ do. Knowing that, we see that we are commanded by God to be baptized. This is an amazing opportunity to witness so many others that you are His now and forever!

Now after you get baptized, what happens next? Well, there is nothing special with the water that we use or the tub that you get dunked in. You won’t suddenly start behaving perfectly in everything you do… But you will have just announced to everyone on stage that you are proud to be His son or daughter. You will have publicly declared that He is truly good and worthy of following as Lord of your life! Him saving you is the best thing that has ever happened! From that moment on continue to seek Him first in all that you do and you will grow in your relationship with Him just like you and I grow in our relationships with those who we love.

Cristina’s Baptism Experience

Story Team: What was the feeling like after you were baptized?

Amazing! I’m in awe of what God has done and is doing for us if we simply trust Him. I could not articulate the overwhelming feeling at that moment; yet, assuredly I felt God’s presence and still do. You can feel God’s spiritual awakening that is happening within you and around you as you’re being renewed. It’s a glorious feeling!

Story Team: Who was up there with you?

Yvette , Dana, Rachel, Kelsey, and Megan.

Yvette is one of my best friends who also is my sister, and she has demonstrated what it is to love like Jesus by her generosity and uplifting character.

Dana is my close friend ever since I started attending Hoboken Grace 4 years ago. We were acquainted when I joined a dinner group then our friendship flourished into something better than I anticipated.

Dana suggested I serve on the Hoboken Grace Kids‘ worship team along with her. I felt unequipped for the role; however, Dana graciously encouraged me to take that step of faith and for that I’m forever grateful.

Rachel is a remarkable leader that led me into tithing, continuing to serve along with the Grace Kids’ team members, and her noticeable efforts to ensure those that serve remain engaged in the community is inspiring. I’m grateful for sharing my reservations with Rachel, who intentionally listened and provided an enlightening perspective.

In every Hoboken Grace Kids’ team huddle I’ve attended, Megan vividly welcomes team members and consistently creates excitement on our current and upcoming Grace kids’ events.

Kelsey epitomizes what it means to be “All in”! It’s great to see how she steps into faith wholeheartedly and is loving to all serving on Hoboken Grace’s worship team.

Story Team: For another Hoboken Grace community member who may be thinking about taking this step, what would you say to them?

Trust God and go all in without reservation in Jesus’ name!

Story Team: What made you take the step of baptism, and why was it important to you?

My first attempt of taking the step of baptism did not go as I planned. About 3 years ago I was preparing to get baptized at the second service, then it was interrupted by a fire alarm evacuating members outside the building; therefore, canceling service/baptisms for that day.

I was experiencing anxiety at the time and insecurities as to why this could be happening resulting in my decision to not step into faith after I was invited back for the next baptism. I continued to serve and attend service with my reservations of baptism in mind.

Every baptism I viewed and was a part of, I felt His Spirit and would burst into joyful tears after seeing others stepping into faith. I started experiencing feelings of conviction and guilt of not fully committing to God. My self-centered thoughts shifted into Christ centered thoughts even when I felt deterred.

I asked God for guidance and commenced a relationship with Him and He delivered! God has been renewing my mind and spirit throughout my path to faith which felt like an obstacle course before.

I needed to be all in so baptism was the next important step to faith for a relationship of trust with God. Well, God’s plan were greater than my thoughts were and now I’m finally baptized!

Story Team: Anything else you’d like to share?

I’m grateful that I have been blessed with my best friend and family who are supportive to my journey. Thank you to the Hoboken Grace team for being part of God’s mission of reconciliation.

To the future baptized readers (see what I did there), ask about baptism and go all in today!

Learn more about ‘What is Baptism’ here.

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