CEREMONIES & CELEBRATIONS

  BAPTISM, DEDICATIONS, FUNERALS AND WEDDINGS

Baptism

"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Matthew 28:19). Watersprings practices believer's baptism by immersion. If you have questions about baptism, see below. If you're interested in being baptized, be sure to attend one of our upcoming baptisms.

What is Baptism?
Baptism is an act Jesus commands His followers to participate in (Matt. 28:19). Baptism also represents the pledge of a good conscience before God (1 Peter 3:21), and it's what Christians do outwardly to show what God has done inwardly. For all who believe in Him, Jesus Christ puts to death the former self, and gives a new resurrected life. Jesus called this being "born again" (John 3:3), and it's what the apostle Paul described when he said believers are "new creatures, the old has gone and the new has come" (2 Corinthians 5:17). When a person is baptized, their submersion represents the death and burial of the old life. When they come out of the water, it represents the new life God has given them (Romans 6:4).
The only requirements to be baptized are to believe in Jesus Christ, and to understand what baptism represents. Acts 8:36-37 reads, "Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, "See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?"

What is the purpose of baptism?
"Did you forget that all of us became part of Christ when we were baptized? We shared his death in our baptism. So when we were baptized, we were buried with Christ and shared his death. We were buried with him so that we could live a new life, just as Christ was raised from death by the wonderful power of the Father. Christ died, and we have been joined with Christ by dying too. So we will also be joined with him by rising from death as he did" (Romans 6:3-5). Baptism is a symbolic act by which we share in the death and life of Jesus Christ. Jesus died and was buried for the sake of our sins, and baptism represents the death and burial of our old life. But Jesus was also raised from the dead in order to give us eternal life. As we're raised out of the water, it represents our newfound life in Christ. In baptism we're essentially saying we identify with what Jesus went through for us.
In a way, baptism is a funeral and a birthday celebration in one: God gave us this rite to remind us of the spiritual decision we made: It's a way for us to put our faith into action, telling the world we've died to our old selves and desires, and have received a new resurrected life in Christ. It keeps us accountable and reminds us that the world is watching and expects to see change in our lives.
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new" (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Is baptism necessary for salvation?
In examining the following, our hope is to give clear, concise reasons why Watersprings does not believe that baptism is necessary for salvation.

What is Watersprings's position on infant baptism?
We don't baptize infants or small children because it's impossible for them to consciously place their faith in Christ and understand what baptism represents. Although the outward act of baptism would be accomplished, the inward significance of baptism would be completely void and ritualistic. Furthermore, the biblical model is always that of infant and child dedication, never baptism (Exodus 13:2, 12-15, 1 Samuel 1:26-28, Luke 2:22, 27, 18:15-17, Matthew 19:13-15, Mark 10:13-16).
Therefore, when we baptize someone, they must first be a believer in Jesus (Acts 8), and they must understand what baptism means and represents (Romans 6).
If you were baptized as an infant, the Bible never teaches or demonstrates infant baptism, but rather that baptism should be experienced only by those who consciously place their faith in Jesus Christ (again, see Acts 8, 1 Peter 3:21). Thus, we believe that infant baptism is something without warrant in the Word which doesn't have any spiritual significance for the infant. We would definitely encourage someone who was baptized as an infant to be baptized as an adult after coming to Christ. Remember, the value in baptism is that it's an outward reflection of an inward commitment-your commitment to bury the past and follow after Jesus.

Should I or can I be baptized again?
The New Testament says a person should be baptized with an awareness of what they're doing. Check out Acts 8:35-38, Romans 6:3-4, and 1 Peter 3:21. These scriptures indicate that baptism is something that you need to fully comprehend in order for it to have any true significance in your life. Once you have an understanding of what baptism is and what it represents, you can (and should) be baptized again.

In whose name do you baptize?
At Watersprings, we follow the pattern put forth by Christ in Matthew 28:19, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."

Child Dedication

"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children" (Deuteronomy 6:5-7a).
Congratulations on the birth of your new baby! In the midst of all that is changing in your home, we invite you to consider dedicating your new child. Dedicating a baby is more than an event, it is an opportunity for you, at the beginning of your journey as a parent, to really think about what will matter most in the life of your child, to talk together about what you value and what you can do today to have the greatest impact on your child's future. After all, no one will have more influence on your child than you! We believe that what happens at home is more important than what happens at church. It is our hope that we can partner with you from the very beginning: We want to be your biggest fans, your strongest supporters, and your trusted guides as you raise your child to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
This event is not infant baptism. We believe that when people are old enough to understand what it means to put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ as their personal Savior, they should have the opportunity to make that choice. We believe it is at that time, when a person has made a decision for Christ, that it is appropriate to be baptised.
A baby dedication is about your commitment as a parent to lead your child into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ, so that you can guide and raise them in the Lord. It is our hope and prayer that the investment you make in your child will lead to their own personal choice to follow Him.
If you would like to schedule a baby dedication, please contact our office, where they will schedule an appointment with one of our pastors to encourage you in your raising your children in a Christian home before your dedication. You will also receive the book, "Shepherding a Child's Heart" at your dedication.
For the baby dedication signup form click here.

Funerals

"Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ" (Galatians 6:2). As you experience the loss of your loved one, the heart of our ministry is to come alongside you in this time of grief. Our hope is that we can help make this difficult time less burdensome by comforting you emotionally, encouraging you spiritually, and assisting you in the practical details of arranging a funeral or memorial service to honor your loved one.
Our pastors and funeral coordinator are available either to meet with you or talk with you by phone if you prefer. For further information, or to set up an appointment with us, please call our office.

Weddings

"And the two become one flesh" (Mark 10:8). We want your wedding to be a beautiful experience. In your marriage preparation, we ask each couple to meet with Pastor Gordon for premarital counseling prior to their ceremony. This will lay a Biblical foundation for your lifetime commitment of marriage.
We have a number of wedding facilities available on our campus: Contact our office to see about scheduling an appointment with our wedding coordinator, or for information about pricing.