Have You Been Baptized, Part 2: Overcoming The Fear of Being Re-Baptized

Concerning your being approved by God for service, if you have not been baptized subsequent to your salvation experience, I would really ask you to follow God’s command on this, and be baptized by full immersion, and to understand that your former baptism (if you were indeed baptized as an infant), was not true baptism in God’s sight, since it did not follow the prescribed method or order (1. by immersion, 2. following conversion as a sign of your faith, not the faith of your parents or guardians). If you were baptized as an infant, I do confess, it was a gesture by your parents or relatives (or whoever was in charge of you back then) who I believe desired to do right even as my own parents desired to do right when they also had me ‘baptized’ (as they say) as an infant. Still, this does not make it right, and the Lord does hold us accountable for doing what he says. What our parents did was what they thought best. What our parents did does not excuse from having to obey the Lord’s command!

As a diagnostic type of question, if you have a hard time with this, and especially if you were baptized as an infant, I would like to ask you, ‘Are you avoiding being re-baptized as a true convert, because you fear that those who initiated your former baptism when you were younger would be offended?’ If the answer to this question is ‘Yes’, then, really, what it means is that you have a problem with fear and not the issue of whether or not you should be baptized. What you really need to do is have a good long talk with the Lord about how you feel and why you feel that way. Just talk to him and share with him your deepest feelings and anxieties. Let him have your pain and your anxieties, for he cares for you! (1 Peter 5:7). He will certainly take that pain and give you the ability to overcome your fear — for that fear will not belong to you anymore, it will have been given to God. Go, then, and get baptized after that! For in so doing, you will be fulfilling the Lord’s command, and God will be well-pleased with you!

The fear of man, as the Bible make clear, is a snare! It will prevent you from really serving the Lord with all your heart. As an example, some people call it the ‘Jezebel spirit’ — that intimidating spirit, that causes us to refrain from really doing what we know in our hearts is ‘right and pleasing’ before God. Jesus went to the waters in baptism as an adult. John the Baptist tried to prevent it, saying, ‘Lord, I have need of being baptized by you, and do you come to me [to be baptized]?’ Jesus answered, ‘Permit it at this time, in order that all righteousness may be fulfilled.’ (Matthew 3:14-15). I urge you, then, not to take the Lord’s word lightly in this regard! He wants you to be baptized even as he was baptized, in order to ‘fulfill all righteousness.’