All believers are commanded to be baptized as the first act of obedience following salvation. While baptism neither saves nor helps to save, it does serve as an outward witness of our faith to others. Throughout the New Testament, those who received Christ were always immediately baptized. There was no “waiting period,” and neither was there hesitation on the part of anyone who was truly born again. Acts 2:41 says, “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added to them about three thousand souls.”
In Scripture, only believers are baptized; it is for this reason that Biblical baptism is sometimes referred to as “believers’ baptism.” For this reason, New Testament churches do not “baptize” infants nor anyone else who is unable to make a choice for themselves to put their faith in Christ. Likewise, it is also the reason that those who have been “baptized” before salvation are expected to be baptized after they are genuinely saved; whatever “baptism” they experienced prior to salvation was nothing more than getting wet for it could not picture their baptism in Christ if they had not first been genuinely converted.
Despite the practice of some denominations to practice “baptism” by some mode other than immersion, such as sprinkling or pouring, such practice is not Biblical. Every single baptism in the Bible was by immersion; in fact, the very word “baptize” is a transliteration of the Greek word “baptizo” which means “to immerse or dunk.” Only baptism by immersion can accurately picture what happens when the believer is immersed into Christ at the moment of salvation. Galatians 3:27 tells us, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” And I Corinthians 12:13 continues, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body…”
The story of Phillip and the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8:26-40 provides a clear presentation of who should be baptized and how it should be done.
Please click on the link and listen to Pastor’s message on baptism and salvation before continuing to the next item. It answers many questions that are often asked in reference to baptism and salvation.