Baptism

water baptism at riverside church

“We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, 

just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father,  

we too might walk in newness of life.” Romans 6:4  

Thank you for your interest in being baptized at Riverside Church! Baptism represents the beginning of the Christian life and entrance into God’s family, the church.

The Bible teaches that baptism is a symbolic act. It’s the first step in following Jesus Christ as Lord. Declaring to the body your personal faith in Jesus. As a wedding ring identifies a husband with his wife, so baptism identifies a Christian with Christ. At Riverside Church, we believe the Bible teaches that baptism is for believers only  – for those who have repented of their sins and placed their faith in Jesus Christ. For this reason, we don’t baptize infants or young children. Our Statement of Faith describes baptism in this way:  

“Water baptism is intended only for the individual who has received the saving benefits of Christ’s atoning work and become his disciple. Therefore, in obedience to Christ’s command and as a testimony to God, the Church, oneself, and the world, a believer should be immersed in water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Water baptism is a visual demonstration of a person’s union with Christ in the likeness of his death and resurrection. It signifies that his former way of life has  been put to death, and vividly depicts a person’s release from the mastery of sin.” 

If you’ve never been baptized as a believer, even if you’ve been saved for a while, we encourage you to still be baptized – publicly declaring your faith and allegiance to Jesus Christ. Though we don’t believe that baptism saves anyone, we do believe it is an important step of obedience and discipleship. Below are some relevant Scriptures we encourage you to look up and study, as it relates to baptism.  

Those who have repented and believed in Jesus Christ 

“…Repent and be baptized…” Acts 2:38 

“But when they believed…they were baptized…” Acts 8:12 

Those who desire to be baptized in obedience to God 

“Those who accepted his message were baptized…” Acts 2:41

After they have repented and believed 

Ideally, after some instruction to bring understanding and faith for obedience – See Matthew

Immersion 

“…Jesus…was baptized by John in the Jordan. As Jesus was coming up out of the water…” Mark 1:9-10 “Then both…went down into the water and Philip baptized him.” Acts 8:38-39 

By another believer 

“…go and make disciples…baptizing them…” Matthew 28:19 

In the name of the Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit 

“…baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…” Matthew

To follow Jesus’ command 

“…teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” Matthew 28:20 

To testify that we are disciples of Jesus Christ 

To identify with Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection 

“We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death…” Romans 6:4

We follow Jesus’ example and command 

Matthew 28:18-20 

We receive grace that comes with faith and obedience 

“Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” John 13:17 

We testify to the person and work of Jesus Christ 

“Having been buried with Him in baptism and raised with Him through your faith in the power of God, who raised Him from the dead.” Colossians 2:12

NEXT STEPS

Complete the “Application for Baptism” form online at 954churchcom. Share your desire to be baptized with your family and close friends so they can plan to attend and celebrate your baptism with you. Parents of children desiring to be baptized should help them follow through with all the preparations. 

Once the Sunday of your baptism is approved and confirmed that Sunday, please arrive 30 minutes early so that we can provide further direction and instructions. 

The clothes you wear for baptism should be modest, especially when wet. Be sure to bring a towel and a change of clothing. 

Be prepared to share what God has done in your life at the service. It is not necessary, but we  encourage you to testify publicly how Christ has changed you by his grace and share it with the  body  

Pray for an increased revelation of the significance of water baptism, and ask God to meet you with a visitation of His Holy Spirit when you are baptized. Come expecting God’s presence and blessing!

FOR FURTHER STUDY

Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem, Chapter 49. 

Spiritual Disciplines within the Church by Donald Whitney, Chapters 2-3. 

Life in the Fathers House by Wayne Mack, Chapters 2, 6. 

The Deliberate Church by Mark Dever, Chapters 4, 10. 

The Communion of Saints by Philip Ryken, Chapter 4. 

Believer’s Baptism edited by Thomas Schreiner and Shawn Wright, Chapter 2, 3, 10.

​​Want to Get Baptized?

Click on the link below and register to get baptized.