BAPTISM SERVICE SUNDAY MAY 2ND

WHAT DO I BRING?

Bring a towel and a pair shorts that you can wear as you are baptized. You will be given a T-shirt on Sunday morning that you will wear. This is for both men and women. Also, bring any other items that you might need to get yourself back together after getting completely wet. If you feel more comfortable, we have baptism gowns available that you can wear over your clothes or a swimsuit.

WHO SHOULD I INVITE TO ATTEND MY BAPTISM?

You are welcome to invite your friends and family! This is a time of celebrating your commitment to Christ and you want your loved ones to be there with you during this meaningful moment. Write them a note inviting them to come and share the experience with you. Here’s an example:

On Sunday (date),  I am going to be baptized to celebrate my commitment to Christ and it would mean a lot to me to have you there to share that moment with me. The service starts at (insert service time of your baptism here) and will be at Harvest Christian Church, 624 SW Halsey St., Troutdale. The service is casual so dress comfortable. I hope you can make it. Christ is really doing something special in my life and I want you to experience this with me. 

BAPTISM IS A BIBLE COMMAND

Jesus made baptism a part of his ministry.  He made it part of our disciple making mission. “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19 The Bible records that everyone who believed was baptized immediately upon conversion (Acts 2:41, 8:36, 10:48, 16:15).

BAPTISM IS A DECISIVE PUBLIC STAND

Many people wonder about the significance of this ancient symbol. What does it stand for? Why is it important?  In Bible times, followers of Jesus were baptized as a way of making a public stand for Christ. Baptism marked a change that had occurred in their life and a choice they were making to live openly as a Christ follower. Peter called out those who wanted to receive Christ in this public manner, “Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 2:38).  Today we use baptism to communicate the same thing – we have become followers of Christ and we are choosing to live as He taught us. And this commitment is open for all to see. Christ said it plainly, “If a person is ashamed of Me and My message, I, the Son of Man, will be ashamed of that person when I return in my glory and in the glory of the Father and the holy angels.” (Luke 9:26).  We are not ashamed!

Baptism is a way to witness to others of your belief in Christ and your resulting commitment. Though it may seem a little intimidating or humiliating to be involved in such a public act of surrender, it translates into a powerful witness to all who view it.

WHAT BAPTISM INVOLVES

The word for baptism in the Bible means immersion. It was a word used in the ancient world to describe the process of dying materials by immersing (baptizing) them in containers that held dye. From the description of baptisms in the Bible, we can tell that Christians were baptized by being immersed totally under water: “Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water…” (Acts 8:39).

TODAY WHEN WE BAPTIZE A PERSON WE PUT THEM COMPLETELY UNDER THE WATER SYMBOLIZING THREE SPECIFIC THINGS:

The death, burial and resurrection of Christ. The story of our forgiveness is Christ’s story of love and sacrifice. Being placed under the water symbolizes His death and burial but coming up out of the water represents His life and victory over death. (1 Corinthians 15:3-4)

It pictures our salvation experience. We were all dead in our sins but now we have been made alive in Christ. Coming up out of the water pictures are hope of living a changed life becoming more and more surrendered to Christ. (Romans 6:4)

Finally, it represents our future in Christ. Since death has been defeated, even if we die, our hope is clear that our bodies will be raised when Christ returns to be with Him forever! (1 Thessalonians 4:14)

When a person commits their life to Jesus, baptism is the logical next step for that person to publicly confess what Jesus has done in washing their sin away.  When a follower of Christ is baptized at Harvest, we place them completely under water to mark what has happened in their life – they have been totally changed and each baptized disciple is committed to a life path of complete surrender to Him!

WHO CAN BE BAPTIZED?

At Harvest, we baptize individuals who have made the personal decision to accept the forgiveness of Jesus Christ offered through the cross and have made the choice to follow Christ.

Children who have have made this vital life decision are welcome to experience baptism. One of our Pastor’s will visit with each child and pray with families concerning this decision.

CAN I BE SAVED WITHOUT BAPTISM?

We do not stand in judgment or tell God who to be merciful to. A better question is, “Can someone love God with all their heart, mind, soul and strength -but refuse to do what is commanded of them? Lordship is not about loopholes. Note that in every situation of conversion from the Bible, all who expressed belief in Jesus were baptized immediately.