Is instruction in order to prepare for baptism a requirement in your church? If so, who is the focus on that process?
If I’d been required to take a series of prep classes or undergo a formal catechism, I wouldn’t have been able to undergo baptism until I was an adult. I became a follower of Jesus as a teen, and my Jewish parents forbade me to attend church as long as I lived under their roof.
However, I was presented with an opportunity to undergo baptism by immersion just months after I first came to faith. I was visiting a friend who was a college student living in another city. The pastor of the campus ministry with which my friend was involved put together an impromptu Sunday afternoon baptism service at a local church for students involved in the organization’s weekly Bible study.
As I watched one student after another give testimony to Jesus, I could barely stay in my seat. Jesus had changed my life, too. When the pastor asked if there was anyone else present who wished to be baptized, I stepped forward. As he didn’t know me, the pastor took me aside to do a quick Q and A to ascertain whether I understood what baptism meant. I had been transformed by the resurrected Messiah, and wanted to publicly demonstrate my commitment to him by obedience to his command to repent, believe and be baptized. I had decided, in the words of the old gospel song, to follow Jesus. There was no turning back. [Read more]