I find it hard to believe that anyone still thinks like this. But sadly, there continues to be parents who believe that dipping their baby in water at a church will keep the little beaner out of hell.
That’s why, when I saw this graphic in an atheist community, I saved it for Frank’s Cottage. This is a good opportunity to tell you the truth about christenings, baptisms and many other traditions associated with the Christian faith.
Let me make it absolutely clear (and I’m supported by the Bible): christenings and baptisms don’t save you from ANYTHING. They save you from ZERO. Nothing.
In fact, they are as essential to Christianity as a screen door is to a submarine.
So what’s the point?
If christenings are done with the right motivation and understanding, then they serve to make a public statement on behalf of parents: they tell a church congregation that the parents are committed to raising their child with Christian values and with a full understanding of who Jesus is and what He continues to accomplish in this world.
In other words, it’s a commitment that, in Bible-believing churches, will hold the parents accountable for how their raise their child. From this perspective, a christening is absolutely a good thing.
Baptisms? This is also public statement, making it clear to everyone who witnesses the ritual of immersing your entire body in water that you have washed away the “old” you to make way for the “new” you.
This new you believes that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He died to make up for all the wrong things you’ve done and all the right things you’ve failed to do.
This might seem just symbolic, but consider this: Jesus Christ Himself insisted on getting baptized. At first, the man who baptized Jesus insisted he wasn’t worthy. Here is Jesus’s response, recorded in a section of the Bible called ‘Matthew’: But Jesus insisted. “Do it. God’s work, putting things right all these centuries, is coming together right now in this baptism.”
And so it was done. But please note, this still doesn’t mean getting baptized is the key to Heaven. Baptism happens as a result of a change of heart and mind. It’s evidence of what has already happened. And that certainly applies to the baptism of Jesus.
In fact, while Jesus was on a Roman cross, dying for all the wrong things we’ve done and all the right things we’ve failed to do, a section of the Bible called ‘Luke’ records a robber being crucified on a cross next to him.
As they died together, the robber said “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom.” [Jesus] said, “Don’t worry, I will. Today you will join me in paradise.”
Notice what didn’t happen? There was no baptism. The man on the cross recognized his failures, recognized who Jesus is and what Jesus’s death could do for him and did the only thing he could do: speak his hopes to Jesus. The result? Jesus gave that robber a place in Heaven.
So, set aside any strange Christian traditions you might have heard about. Concentrate on the good news for YOU. Jesus is God’s gift to YOU. Will you accept that gift? Yes or no, post your thoughts below and let’s have a conversation.