What does it mean to be a follower of Jesus Christ?
We request that all persons seeking baptism at Good News Church listen to the following two sermons first:
Baptism is a ceremonial immersion/washing with water in the name of God/Christ, which is done to a believer in Christ, signifying what God has done in their life (salvation).
We believe that the sacrifice Jesus made by dying on the cross (for the sins of all the people who would ever trust in Him) provides the sole basis for the forgiveness of sin. Salvation occurs only when a person places his or her faith in the death and resurrection of Christ as the sufficient payment for his or her sin.
When someone accepts Jesus Christ as Lord (the God they obey) and Savior (the one who rescued them from the sins they could never rescue themselves from) then they are ready to be baptized. As a bride and groom show others their love for each other by wearing wedding bands, we believe that baptism is a great opportunity for people to be able to show others that they have accepted Christ and are now walking with Him.
The reason for this is that we want to be clear on exactly what it means to be a follower of Jesus Christ - we want to make sure that a person understands what it means to accept Jesus as Savior and Lord. If, after listening to these sermons, you have any questions about what it means to be a follower of Jesus, please contact the church so that we can arrange for someone to meet with you and explain things further.
For people who do follow Jesus and understand what this means, it is important that they be baptized. Because Jesus instructed us to be baptized, baptism is an act of obedience. While we do not believe the baptism itself saves you, it demonstrates submission to God.
Some denominations choose to baptize infants and other small children. While we recognize the right of other churches to practice infant baptism, we understand Scripture to teach that only professing believers qualify for baptism.
Because we baptize people based on their “profession of faith” we are very careful in how we handle the baptisms of small children. While it’s true that 5-year olds can profess faith in Jesus Christ by parroting back what their parents told them to say, we think it’s wise to wait until a child is older to ensure that they are professing a faith that is truly theirs. Technically, we’ve never officially decided on a minimum age for this. However, we think that encouraging parents to wait until the professing child has reached the age of twelve is good advice.
Feel free to contact the church to set up an appointment with a church leader who will meet with you. They will ask you questions about your relationship with Jesus Christ and take over from there. Together, you can schedule a Sunday morning when you will be baptized.
Note: While there are other ways to do baptism other than during a service on a Sunday morning (ex: in a pool in someone’s back yard), at Good News, we prefer to baptize people during our Sunday morning services because we believe it is important for the rest of the church people to be able to see it, and to celebrate along with the person being baptized.
At Good News we have a portable baptistery (it is like a movable hot tub with no jets) that we set up for baptisms during the Sunday morning service.