Friday, April 17, 2009

"Re-Baptizing" - or Baptising - Obediance or Rebellion

Internet Monk has a post on how churches should view or do view the idea of "Re-Baptizing" people who come from other churches and have a conversion experience. Lots of opinions. Lots of views. All revolving around the idea that a person was baptized usually as a baby at another denomination from where they are today. How does that denomination FEEL about all that.

The Spirit of God in me stirred when I read this. First let me say with as much grace as I can. The Father is NOT interested in your opinion on the rightness or wrongness of baptism, once, twice, fifty times. He is interested in your heart toward HIM. Baptism is essential to signal your flesh, the world and the devil of your heart change. Believe and be Baptized. That is the order given by JESUS. I'll take his opinion over the opinion of denominational leaders any day.

Our churches, particularly evangelical, catholic and denominational are filled to the brim with unconverted baptized pew sitters. How do I know. I was one. So were some of you. Maybe most of you.

When I was converted, saved, whatever term you use, when I came to Jesus I was a different person. I knew life as I knew it had changed. I was a new creation. Old things passed away. All things became new.

The Blood of Jesus not only cleansed me, that same blood by the Holy Ghost flowed thru my veins.

So what am I to do about the issue of Baptism. No one preached to me. No one condemned me. I just looked at what Jesus said and the Jailer of Paul and Silas and I knew by the Spirit of God, not tradition, not man's rules, not by denomination, that I believed and now must be baptized in water according to the scriptures.

For that reason, I do not embrace baby Baptism nor do I see it as efficacious. I do embrace infant dedication, which in a way is what baby Baptism really is. But, a person must obey his or her conscience as it is stirred by the Holy Ghost. The word says:
If you know how to do the right and yet do it not, the sin is the greater on account of your knowledge. James 4:15

That applies here. If we resist being Baptised in Water, preferably by immersion, because of some denominational constriction or the attitudes of men after we are converted then your Father KNOWS where your allegiance and obedience lies. It is about obedience after all. He will know you would NOT have slain Issac on the Altar and will not use you as he might have if you are unwilling to be obedient in this. Here's where following what people think can take you:

1 Samuel 15:22-23 (New International Version)

22 But Samuel replied:
"Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD ?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the LORD,
he has rejected you as king."

If God calls you to be Baptized and you choose the traditions of men over obedience to the word of God you will be set aside. You will probably make heaven, but set aside none the less.

This IS the word of the Lord. Not the word of Churchianity.

1 comment:

Heart and Hands Int'l Ministries said...

I got saved when I was 13 and Baptized in a lake (in VERY cold weather I might add!) Then later teenage years found me walking away from the Lord because I knew I was sinning and didn't want to be like the hypocrites I saw standing in our church portico smoking, the deacons who skipped Sunday School to go to Krispy Kremes where I too was skipping, or the "social drinkers" of our congregation. SO I stopped going. But at 20 I rededicated my life, at 12 met and married my husband and we moved to a new place. (Yes, I am taking the long way around-hang in there!) Several years into marriage I heard the preacher of the church we were attending teaching on Baptism and conditions of the heart. He mentioned backsliders. I was pricked in my heart, and so I made a decision to be re-Baptized as a sign of humility and true repentance of my backsliding, although it had been several years now that I was faithfully serving God and actively serving in every church we had went to (military moves.) Never questioned if it was "right or wrong" because it was right before God in my heart to submit to what HE put in my heart to do.

So for any out there who are struggling with what to do, follow JESUS and your heart towards pleasing HIM. And remember Jesus was only harsh with the Pharisees!