Baptism Basics

What exactly is baptism? The word “baptism” as it appears in the Bible means immersion (the process of submersion in water followed by emergence from the water).

“As soon as Jesus was baptized, He came up out of the water.”

Matthew 3:16.

“And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him.”

Acts 8:38

What is the significance of baptism?

Baptism is the outward expression of the inward miracle. It is a visible, tangible, physical expression of what is happening inside spiritually. Our baptism is a picture to be seen by others and reveals what is happening within us.

We are identifying with Jesus’ experience and demonstrating outwardly in our baptism that:

  1. We are dying to our old life and the ways of sin.
  2. We are burying that old life of sin.
  3. We rise to live the new life.


Why should I be baptized?

  1. Because Jesus was baptized. He is our model, our example, in everything we think and do. Read Matthew 3:13-17.
  2. Because Jesus commanded it. Read Matthew 28:18-20
  3. Because baptism was an integral part of every conversion experience recorded in the book of Acts (which tells about the actions and beliefs of the first Christians and the first churches that formed after Jesus’ ascension). Read about:
    • groups of people being baptized – Acts 2:41; 8:12
    • Paul being baptized – Acts 8:34-39; 9:18; 22:11-16
    • Cornelius being baptized – Acts 10:47,48
    • Lydia and her household being baptized – Acts 16:13-15
    • Philippian jailer and his household being baptized – Acts 16:33,34
    • Corinthians being baptized – Acts 18:8
    • Ephesians being baptized – Acts 19:5


Am I ready to be baptized?

You are ready when:

  1. You believe that Jesus is the Son of God and are ready to receive Jesus as your Savior.
  2. You are ready to repent – ready to turn your life around.
  3. You are ready to put your past behind you and put your life in Jesus’ hands.

Read Acts 2:38, Colossians 3:5-10, John 1:12,13.