Making Baptism Services Memorable
Fill the Tank - September 12, 2021 - NC Baptists
Fill the Tank is a statewide emphasis for NC Baptists on September 12 to encourage new believers to take the next step of obedience and faith while displaying a picture of the gospel to others through baptism. Learn more at FillTheTankNC.org.
I have compiled some resources and ideas below to help you in planning a memorable service that day.
Baptism is a major celebration in the Baptist church. The Baptist Faith and Message describes baptism this way:
Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer’s faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Savior, the believer’s death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. It is a testimony to his faith in the final resurrection of the dead. Being a church ordinance, it is prerequisite to the privileges of church membership and to the Lord’s Supper.
As worship leaders, we should strive to make baptisms more memorable for our people–to really celebrate the occasion. Here are a few ideas you can incorporate in your baptism services. Please add your ideas in the comments to share with others.
- Prepare video testimonies of the person being baptized. Not only is this a great way to share the person’s testimony in a succinct and powerful way, but it also provides a smooth transition as the person can get into the baptistry while the video is being shown. Pre-recording the testimony allows for editing the finished product to a strong presentation. In the testimony interview, ask questions that can really impact lives of the hearers as they are presented with the gospel message.
- Include testimonial salvation songs for the congregation to sing as a response to the baptism, helping them remember their personal salvation and the joy that has brought to their lives. There are a few songs specific to baptism such as the traditional hymn, Baptized in Water.
- Consider holding the baptism in a lake, river, or other venue outside of the church for a special gathering.
- Present a baptism t-shirt for the person to remember their baptism and be a witness to friends when worn.
- Have family and others that were instrumental in the person’s salvation and discipleship to stand during the baptism.
- Let the person being baptized choose someone important to their faith to pray for them after they are baptized.
- Have a reception after the service to celebrate.
- If you have more than one service, be sure to share with the other service congregants the testimony videos and inform about the baptism service so they also are included in the celebration.
- Recognize baptism anniversaries by sending a card, making a call or visit to help the person remember the day. Use the contact as a way to check up on their discipleship progress.
- A candle can be lit after the baptism as the person is reminded that he/she is to shine the light of the gospel to the world around them.
- Ask the congregation to covenant to pray for and support this person in their discipleship journey.
- Invite a family member to read a relevant scripture passage.
Baptist Faith and Message: Article 7a: Baptism – commentary on Baptist beliefs about baptism.
Resources for Baptism Sunday – this was something NAMB produced for an emphasis last year, but the resources are still very viable.
Baptism and Worship – some thoughts from Bob Kauflin on his blog, Worship Matters.
Worship Ideas on the Sacrament of Baptism – while this comes from a different tradition from Baptists, it has some great ideas that you may wish to incorporate in your service.
Please add ideas to share with others in the comments.