- an act of obedience to Jesus. Baptism is one of the first ways that a believer can say "yes" to Jesus after placing his or her faith in Him. Saying "yes" to Jesus is the key to following Him. Baptism should not be viewed as some rusty, religious ritual but as an act that demonstrates obedience to a direct command of Jesus. (Matthew 28:19-20)
- a public demonstration of a person's new faith. Baptism is the time when believers say publically "My life is different. I now follow Christ." Baptism does not save you from sin - only faith in Christ does that. Baptism does, however, demonstrate faith. (Acts 18:8)
- a symbol of death and new life. Sometimes people think "Why be submerged in water? What is that all about?" Water baptism is symbolic. The death of the old person, the person they were before knowing Jesus, is symbolized by the believer going under the water. The new life that the believer is now experiencing is symbolized by the believer coming out of the water. When the Spirit of God joins with your spirit, the old life is gone. Your new life has begun. ( 2 Cor 5:17) Baptism symbolizes this new life. (Romans 6:3-7)
- a strong statement of allegiance to God. The baptizing of a believer 'in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" is similar to a kind of deed of transfer. The believer says "I now belong to God." Baptism then is an act of commitment. This commitment changes everything.