If you're reading this, it's because you are interested in baptism. CONGRATULATIONS!

Baptism is the next important step to take after deciding to make Jesus the Lord of your life. In this 7-day devotional, we want to help you understand what baptism is, why we do it, how we do it, and who should take this next step.

So, let's dive right in!


Te explain what baptism is, we have to look at where it first shows up in the Bible.

In Luke 3, we see a man named John reminding the Israelite people of their need for God. He travels through the surrounding areas of the Jordan River, encouraging his listeners to be "baptized" as a sign of repentance for walking away from God. Being "baptized" simply means the he immersed them in water, bringing them back up as a symbol that they would be a new person from that point forward.

That's essentially what baptism is: a picture of what God does in our lives when we surrender our will to Him. 

The church has continued to practice baptism as not only a symbolic act, but as one of its central sacraments. A sacrament is a means of grace - or a way in which God infuses His love into our lives.

We came to Him broken and sinful, but are then made new and full of hope and grace. In the same way, when we enter into the water, we enter as men and women who were broken, lost, and hurting. When we emerge from the water, it represents that we've been washed of our sins, freed from our chains, and made into a brand-new person.

Baptism is a symbol of an incredible work that is going on inside of us.

As we are immersed in water, we are being immersed into a relationship with our Heavenly Father through the work of His Son Jesus Christ (on the Cross), by the power and person of the Holy Spirit. We are being symbolically baptized in the death of Jesus and raised up just like Him from the tomb. Immediately signifying our spiritual rebirth and sealing us for the future when our lives on earth are complete. 


Yesterday we learned that the sacrament of Baptism is an outward symbol of an inward work of God in our hearts and lives. But it also serves another purpose; it's a public declaration of what God has done and what you have decided to do.

In other words, deciding to follow Jesus in your heart is wonderful, but there's something powerful about declaring your commitment to Christ in the presence of family and friends. Additionally, walking away from God and the things He has for you becomes even more difficult after you've made people aware of your decision.

In fact, that's part of the reason it's so powerful - you allow others to be aware of the decision you've made, and now they are able to help keep you accountable.

On top of all that, being baptized is a great way to be a witness. Many people invite their family and friends to witness their baptism, even if they don't know Jesus. This demonstrates some of the authenticity of what you've decided, and of what God is doing in your life, which may even serve as encouragement for them towards the things of God.

Imagine this - you get baptized, and your family/friends end up coming to Jesus as a result! How incredible would that be?

Baptism is not an act of humiliation, but it is an act of humility. It is one of the central ways we declare to the world our gratitude and need for the grace of Jesus Christ. It says to him and the world - I am not ashamed of him, his Body (the Church), or the Cross.  


We hinted a little bit about this yesterday, but one reason to get baptized is because it can be a defining moment in your life and walk with Christ. It becomes the day that you are able to look back on and say, "God changed my heart and life that day in a new way because I took a step of faith."

In fact, your baptism will always be an important spiritual marker in your life. This marker is important because following Jesus doesn't automatically make your life easier.

If anything, it's the opposite.

The enemy of your soul was quite content with your life before you met Jesus: hopeless, self destructive and chaotic. Once you begin to have your life changed and your addictions broken, that's when the enemy often kicks it into high gear and uses manipulation and mind games to distract you from God's plans. In those times, remember:

God's gotten you this far, and He'll take you the rest of the way too. 

In baptism, the water is symbolic of the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 4 teaches us that it is with the Holy Spirit we have been sealed for the day of redemption. Baptism is a sacrament that brings incredible peace and assurance into the heart of the believer. Philippians 1:6 declares, "...that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Baptism is one of the best ways we can evoke this confidence within us. 


In wrapping up our day talking about why we should be baptized, we thought it would be fitting to use the simplest reason: because Jesus told us to. In fact, this is the great commission and the mission statement of Monterey Church. We do it because Jesus said to and we do it because through it He promises His presence!

Believe it or not, you won't always know why God has led you to certain places in your life, and you won't always be comfortable. Maybe that's the case for you and baptism too? Maybe the idea of being dunked into water in front of other people sounds terrifying to you?

Following Jesus means learning to trust Him, even (or especially) in the areas where you're not sure where He's taking you.

Stepping out of our comfort zones and obedience builds our character so that we may receive and be good stewards of the blessings He has for us. 

When God asks you to do something, we can be confident that He always has a good reason and plan.

He might even use your day of baptism to change the life of someone else!

So why should you get baptized? Because Jesus did, and He sets the example for us. 


Often times people ask, "I was baptized as a baby. Should I be baptized again?" We thought it would be helpful to devote a day of this study to explain this a little.

The sacrament of baptism, has been practiced through immersion of confessing believers and also through the baptism of infants and children. There is good theological standing for both methods, but we have decided to practice believer baptism by immersion. Our main reason for this is because we feel it is the best application what the Bible calls for and because we relish the opportunity to celebrate new faith in Christ.

If we're honest, none of us even remember being one or two years old, let alone did we understand the weight of our sin and what it takes to follow Jesus. 

That's why we believe that baptism by immersion is for people who are of an age where they can understand the commitment they're making. So long story short, if you were baptized/sprinkled as a baby, we believe that being baptized as an adult can be a really encouraging and powerful event. 


Anyone that has decided to follow Jesus should be baptized - that's the only requirement! Time and time again we read in scripture that wherever the apostles go and preach, people are baptized. It says that they believed and were baptized. So if your agonizing about whether you deserve to be baptized or whether this is your next step, simply ask yourself one question:

Have I given my life to Jesus, and are you ready to follow Him for the rest of your life?

If the answer is "yes" and you haven't been baptized, it IS your next step!

Remember, baptism is a sacrament; which is something far beyond a religious ritual or symbolic act. It is something that the Spirit of God actively participates in and uses as a means to dispense grace into our life and the life of the Church.

God's Riches At Christ's Expense

It brings the believer great joy and a sense of God's deep pleasure because they have given their life to Him!

As we read yesterday, when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, as He came up out of the water, the Holy Spirit descended upon Him and the Father bellowed from Heaven, "this is my Son, with whom I am well-pleased." Because of His work on the Cross on our behalf, when we are baptized the Holy Spirit descends upon us as well and the Father speaks over us, as well, saying, "This one has now become my son/daughter, and I am pleased with them too!"


One of the greatest parts about your baptism is that you have a unique opportunity to invite family and friends into community with the church. It's a sort of unspoken rule in our culture that when someone invites you to a significant event (like baptism), that you come to support them even if you don't believe a word they're saying.

Take advantage of the chance you have to invite your loved ones to witness your baptism, and spend the surrounding days and weeks praying that God begins to do a work in their heart. Pray that as you step out in faith and extend an invitation that He would then do His part in softening their heart and speaking to them. We've seen guests meet Jesus because someone close to them was being baptized. And that made all the difference!

Don't be afraid to invite someone - step out in boldness, and trust that God will do what only He can do!


As we learned in our study together, you testimony is powerful and transforming. You will have the opportunity to share a piece of your story at your baptism. Don't take this for granted. Take your time to pray and journal. Trust the Holy Spirit as your Comfort and Advocate here. He will lead you. We recommend formulating your thoughts and testimony on paper so that you will have a tool to use while you share. Here are some prompts for you to consider...