Baptism is the immersion of a believer into Christ and the biblical way by which people give their lives to Christ. When by faith we believe in Christ, repent and are baptized, we are eternally identified with Him and His church. Jesus’ final words to his disciples were: “Go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you.” So Peter concludes his first sermon after Jesus is gone with the words: “Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus for the forgiveness of your sins.”
Thus, Northfield does the same in obedience to example and teachings of Christ. When our whole body goes under the water, we symbolize and express our desire that no aspect of who we are escapes death with Christ and renewal by his Spirit. If you want to become a Christian by faith, Northfield joins the Bible in teaching that faith is expressed through baptism. Below is an abridged guide to the way Scripture conveys the meaning of baptism.
God’s Word says, baptism:
– Imitates Christ’s example.
“Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented. And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:13-17)
– Is Christ’s command for every believer.
“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
– Is the pledge of a good conscience toward God.
“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him. (1 Peter 3:18-22)
Hear Francis Chan explain 1 Peter 3:20ff:
– Is for the forgiveness of sins.
“Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” (Acts 2:37-39)
– Represents a death to self and a resurrection to new life now and eternally.
“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.” (Romans 6:1-5)
– Clothes us with Christ.
Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise. (Galatians 3:23-29)
How do I get baptized?
Baptism at Northfield is available to all willing to confess their faith in Jesus as God's Son and Lord of their life. We seek to remove as many barrios as possible to those seeking to make this confession and be baptized. Your part is simple, just come forward during the invitation song that follows the sermon. We have everything you would need including towels, clothes, and even a blow dryer.
Please contact any of our staff members with any questions regarding confession of faith, baptism, and becoming a member of Northfield. You can also email .
Remember, baptism is not the finish line. Only the beginning to an incredible new life.