Wade in the Water… or Not

Basic Theme:  Baptism is one of the two sacraments recognized by the United Methodist Church.  Have you ever wondered why we baptize?  When did this practice begin?  How much water is necessary and how should an individual be baptized?  Baptism is offered to anyone at any age provided they meet the simple qualifications and are willing to take the vows (or a parent take them for a child).  Baptism is a requirement for church membership.

Sermon Snapshot (Key Points):  John the Baptist was the forerunner of Jesus who preached a message of repentance and baptized many who came seeking forgiveness for their sins.  But John was not the first to baptize… ritualistic cleansing and consecration had been a part of the Jewish tradition for centuries.  Jesus also came to John and commanded that he baptize our Lord.  During his ministry, Jesus disciples baptized followers in His name.  Prior to his Ascension, Jesus gave his disciples a mission:  Go, Teach and Baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  This is still our mission and purpose today!

So What?  Have you been baptized?  Should you and/or your children be baptized?  What barriers prevent you from taking this step and publicly declaring your faith in Jesus Christ?