To be charged with sin by God (cf. Does your child now feel genuine affection for Jesus because of what He has done for us because of our sin? With this in mind, here are a couple of takeaways. It is undoubtedly His prerogative to extend a window of opportunity for a child to obey the gospel. 6:1-2). Q: I am a Catholic who was married in a Hindu ceremony, and now we have a baby girl. Your Answer. If it is not natural for your child to submit to you, do you notice a change in your child’s determination to override his/her feelings? Is your child ready to assume citizenship of the kingdom, submitting to King Jesus in everything? Call the church office and ask to speak with the pastor about having the child baptized, if your faith baptizes children -- some denominations do … In contrast, Christianity is about a present kingdom (cf. 3:21). Does your child know what it means to love Jesus? There is no getting around the fact that some people do not have this ability yet, and thus are not accountable to these words. If your child says something hurtful to a sibling or friend, does he/she apologize without being told to do so? Hello, I am 16 years old and I have been going to church on my own for awhile. Why do you think it’s important to be baptized?” Trevan wasn’t sure. Maybe you’re a “Laura.” You’re a Christian who has decided not to be baptized. If the answer is “I don’t know”, “because all my friends are”, “because I want to take communion” or “because my teacher said to” then the child is probably not making this decision with proper motives. To ensure your child is experiencing a true conversion, he/she should feel the weight of sin and come to terms with God’s wrath toward sin. It is essential to teach your child Bible stories while they are still young. In fact, this is the main difference between John’s baptism and the baptism of the New Covenant. Is your child asking Bible questions, indicating that he/she has been thinking seriously about spiritual truths? Get weekly blog posts, updates on new resources, and tips for your children’s ministry. Does your child understand why the blood of Jesus was necessary (Heb. Does your child know that Christ is the Lord and King of His kingdom (1 Cor. 2:20)? Related Questions. Your child will receive the Baptismal grace and freed from original sin. In my judgment, I do not believe so. One main problem with this extreme is that we risk producing an adult that can never be sure whether he/she underwent a true biblical baptism, and thus may struggle later with having a “pure conscience” (1 Pet. Msgr. No matter what, the first reaction should not be one of surprise. Children should be baptized as a child so their soul does not perish in purgatory if they do die. My doubt was very real concerning my baptism. Acts 2:39). This implication is found throughout Scripture. Kids see their friends get baptized, and ask why they do that. ‘Honor your father and mother’ (this is the first commandment with a promise)” (Eph. It involves more than just a tender little heart who tells mom he wants to “get baptized,” like others are doing. Evidently, it was important to early preachers that the audience knew something about the kingdom—the domain and rule of Christ—before administering baptism. She and I were both baptized as infants/toddlers, as is common in the Catholic world. So, what is the difference? Did that toddler sin? Yet, I find comfort in the fact that God is a loving Father, and is longsuffering towards His children (Jas. These kinds of behaviors demonstrate a sincere desire—independent of any parental influence—to know the truth of God’s word better. 6:2; Psa. Everybody's is different, but hey, it makes the world go round. A basic, rudimentary concept of the kingdom of Christ. Many years later, I see God’s plan for baptism laced throughout the Bible, specifically in the Gospels and the book of Acts. 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). Yet, before we go any further, we should note that our primary concern is not about baptism per se; our concern is about conversion (which is a deeper and more meaningful concept). In fact, when inspired preachers taught the gospel to lost people, they preached the “kingdom” to people (Acts 8:12; 19:8; 20:25; 28:23, 31). 5. What must it do to a child when—upon working up the courage to do what he/she thinks is right—an adult brushes the question aside and quickly downplays what the child believes is important? Is your child ready to be crucified with Christ, taking on His identity (Gal. The fundamental point is not whether a child is ready to be baptized, but is she/he ready to begin a new life? You’ll Get Insight into What You Want for Your Child. Grooming Your Next Elders/Selecting A Preacher (DVD), GIFTS (Girls In Fellowship & Team Study) EBOOK, The Spiritual Sword Quarterly Index 1969-2016 (Excel Spreadsheet Download Only), It’s There in Black and White (Now Available), How Social Distancing Can Lead to Vibrant Spiritual Growth. After we have established a proper understanding of baptism, we can see that there are two extremes to be avoided. My wife and I were both born and raised in the Catholic faith. He says we need to convert my wife first into Christianity and thereafter we can do baptism of our daughter. In other words, Jesus expects all people who have the ability to grasp what He says to obey His words. John’s baptism was preparatory to the coming kingdom (Matt. Then be baptized. Rom. Children, by their innocent nature, want to please you. 51:4). Lately I have had several baptism "classes" (really, conversations, since there are usually only one or two couples there at a time) at St. Richard's Church. Can your child fathom not only the joy of heaven but also the fearful expectation of hell (Matt. We express to our children our happiness and pleasure in their desire. We want our children to be baptized but often, especially at church relayed youth camps, emotional pressure is put upon them to be baptized. At age 12 and coming from a mixed unchurched / denominational background, my concept of baptism and the subsequent ongoing conversion process was severely lacking. As the Bible tells us, the promise is to you and your children (cf. Of course, this is just as much directed to parents as it is to children. And if the baptized child chooses to join a different religion, so be it that is their choice. Ask your child questions related to what we have discussed. Do you fully understand that you are commanded to repent and believe (Mark 1:15), and now declare publically that you have repented of your sins? 10:31)? But is your child now old enough to understand the significance of this Biblical command? Parents are to instill this virtue into their children long before their children become old enough to understand this divine imperative. I can say that I was baptized and converted, and I understood the commitment I was making. If you embrace the Biblical concept that we all must choose Christ for ourselves, then you recognize that there are times when a child is not ready to be baptized. As Peter stated in Acts 2:38, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. If one is not old enough to appreciate (on at least a basic level) the gravity of sin, then he/she is not old enough to obey the gospel (the remedy of sin). I looked into my local Catholic church but you have to be a member and have registered your baby to be baptized when you are 6 months pregnant. We would like to get our baby girl baptized but don't know where to go to get her baptized. We should be profoundly grateful that our children have been paying attention and desire to respond to what they have been learning in a positive manner. King. Thus, every child in a Christian home knows they are supposed to love Jesus. On the other hand, we do not want to squelch the genuine desire of a mature child longing for Christ. Does your child confess a lie—before being caught—for no other reason than a hurting conscience before God? 10:4; cf. One of the things I always do as we get started is ask the parents: "why do you want to have your baby baptized?" Do not tell your child all the answers at this moment. 5. Tell your child that God does not send any young person to hell or expect him or her to be baptized until he or she is able to understand more fully the answers to some of the questions that you have discussed. The Lord says to children, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Does your child understand why Jesus needed to make propitiation for our sins (Heb. An excellent examination of the question. 4:20; Col. 1:13; Acts 28:23, 31). Thank you for your careful consideration of this important decision. … because Jesus was baptized and wants us to baptize others. 25:41-46; Heb. September 10, 2020 9:00 am September 10, 2020. Some children find it easier to submit to their parents than other children just by virtue of their personality. For someone to be guilty of sin, it must be committed by someone who is culpable. If we are not careful, we can betray a lack of understanding when we announce that “[Insert Name] was baptized.” Perhaps we should instead say that “[Insert Name] was converted.” Baptism is meaningless by itself – apart from faith, repentance, and the renewed life that is to follow. They often do what they are told, believe what they are taught, and say what they are told to say. “The Church and the parents would deny a child the priceless grace of becoming a child of God were they not to confer Baptism shortly after birth. And Peter said to them, "Repent and be baptized every one of you except your babies in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 2 Thess. Does your child know that the kingdom manifests itself as the one and only church that Jesus built (Matt. First, it is important that we understand what baptism is. Praying From Home During this Time of Pandemic, 2021 General Operating Fund Appeal (pledge), St. Richard's Catholic Church Facebook Page, Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, Resources for Emotional Support & Mental Health, St. Alphonsa Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, Pastoral Care Lay Ministries (volunteers), Request Baptism Certificate (if you were baptized here). Is your child ready to die? Someone must understand at least something about that kingdom before being baptized. The peace of mind has displaced all doubt. Does your child share the attitude of David, who wrote, “I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways; I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word” (Psa. Protestant Faiths. Baptism does not save us or wash away our sins. The role of the Holy Spirit, however, is to convict the human heart of sin (John 16:7-15). The ability to account for one’s actions necessitates a degree of mental capacity to understand what one is doing. On the other hand, the situation is made worse by overreacting to the first extreme. The seventh day of the week is the Sabbath, not … The children of Christian parents should grow up being acquainted with Bible stories and teachings (2 Tim. For example, Jesus said, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Rev. No matter what, the first reaction should not be one of surprise. 9:25-26)? I found myself facing this problem. Why baptize your child if you do go to church? I just didn’t have enough biblical knowledge to understand why at the time. 119:15-16)? They believe the child should wait until he or she can understand fully what it means to join the church. I know a cookie-cutter answer will not satisfy every situation, but I still want to provide as clear of an answer as I can. On the one hand, it would be a mistake to go ahead and baptize the child without asking some serious questions. A child is still trying to figure out the parameters of behavior, and the consequences that come with choices that are made. “To be obedient?” “Right!” said Sister Kemp. Does your child understand how serious it is to sin against an infinitely holy and just God? You must be old enough to seek forgiveness. Those on the day of Pentecost were “cut to the heart” (Acts 2:37). Baptism is a burial (Rom. A child who cannot truly understand this commitment is not ready. Does this describe your child? 4:8), there is first a certain level of maturity or accountability one must reach. Many Christian parents of young children wrestle with how to answer this question. Perhaps we can never know perfectly when a child is ready. So that is not an option. For the promise is for you and for your children except, of course, the baby ones and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself” ( Acts 2:38-39 ). 2:12-16). The Rev. 1 Cor. If you have fully understood these biblical facts and accept them as true, then it is my great pleasure to baptize you into the name of the Father, into the name of the Son, and into the name of the Holy Spirit, amen. God will find a way to help you. In my experience, most children who come to me asking to be baptized still do not have an adequate understanding of sin. Make every effort you can, learn as much as you can. William J. As Christ said, sometimes a child has to go against a parent in order to do what is right. So, you might still be wondering—why should I get baptized? On the Day of Pentecost, Peter’s sermon was an invitation to the kingdom of God. Only God knows the heart (1 Sam. When you’re ready to begin, walk into the water first and have the person being baptized follow you. 1:8), and therefore must submit entirely to the authority of Jesus (Col. 3:17)? Being intellectually qualified to obey the gospel entails far more that being able, in rote fashion, to recite the elements of the plan of salvation—which many children can do. You’ll also want to make sure that you as well as the person you’re baptizing are wearing dark, tight-fitting clothing that won’t be revealing when wet. When I sin, I am deciding to do something that I know is contrary to God’s will (1 John 5:17; Jas. By signing up, you'll get thousands of step-by-step solutions to your homework questions. A noticeable increase in determination to obey parents. If you can answer yes to all three, then it might be time to celebrate the obedience of baptism with your local church. All that is required for an infant to be baptized is that there be “a well-founded hope that the child will be brought up in the Catholic religion” (868). When we’re baptized, we make covenants, or promises, with Heavenly Father.” Anyway your child can and should be baptized even though your not. 9:23)? While you see yourself stuck at the moment, you won't be 14 forever. Does your child understand that only the substitutionary death of a sinless God-man could permanently atone for sin (Heb. Some religions do not believe in baptizing infants and very young children. Aside from corrective punishment in the home, does your child feel genuine regret and sadness for sin? 4:17). Answer: The question of whether a person who has sinned should be baptized again is a fairly common one. In order to have a "good conscience" (I Peter 3:21), I was baptized (again) a few weeks ago (first time was 1997). To sin is to offend God (Gen. 39:9; Lev. 2. A growing love for Jesus and a working understanding of His blood & atoning sacrifice. The parent or church leader is so careful not to baptize a child who isn’t ready that little attention is given to the child’s tender, sensitive heart. Anyone wishing to be baptized must first count the cost of this decision. If a teenage child is old enough to obey the gospel, then the teenage years should be characterized by submission—not rebellion—to his/her parents. 3:2; 4:17). The thing is, my parents are atheists. Did this adult sin? Your child doesn’t need to know these big words, but it is essential to have a basic grasp on these concepts before obeying the gospel. Or maybe you’re just wondering if you … At the age of nine, however, my parents converted to Pentecostalism. Some parents may think the only important follow-up question is, “Do you love Jesus?” But is this all a child needs to be able to answer? That seems like a good way to open up the discussion, and it does cut to the chase about why we're meeting in the first place. Do I need to be baptized again?" Answer all the questions the priest asks you, such as whether you plan to raise the child in the church and live as a godly example before your child. But during the baptism process, you’ll often have the chance to explore these issues on a much deeper level. 15:27-28; Heb. In the Old Testament, God considered a person able to discern right from wrong at 20 years old. One of the things I always do as we get started is ask the parents: "why do you want to have your baby baptized?" How to solve: Why do babies get baptized? I've accepted Christ many years ago, and I've gotten to where I feel the need to be baptized and show it. Baptism is going public with your faith and you get to announce something powerful with a profound action. I suspect that the problem is more that your parents don't truly believe that this is important to you. First, a child must believe the same things that an adult must believe to be saved. However, when you can no longer talk your child out of obeying the gospel—when your child is beginning to lose sleep—this may be a sign that your child is ready. We know that you’ve already given some serious thought to your parenting goals, styles, and what you’d like for your child’s future. 4. 2:10). Is your child reading Scripture on his/her own? A child—perhaps somewhere between 5 and 15 years of age—says to you, “I want to be baptized!” How are we supposed to respond? How does your child respond when he/she disagrees with your decision? Even if culpability is determined, no one is ready to obey the gospel if he or she doesn’t first have a love for the truth (cf. 6. A heightened desire to know the truth of Scripture. Family Newsletter You will receive blog posts and updates on the newest family resources. That seems like a good way to open up the discussion, and it does cut to the chase about why we're meeting in the first place. 16:7; John 2:24; Acts 1:24). A child can feel “convicted” of wrongdoing without being ashamed and heartbroken over sin. 5. Although this is true, some kids will not understand the depth of their sin or their need for a Savior but know that they want to love Jesus so they ask to be baptized. For those who were baptized as children, being baptized after your decision to follow Jesus is a way of marking your decision personally. Does your child understand that the kingdom is the realm of the saved (Col. 1:13)? “Baptism is so important that Jesus was baptized, even though He never sinned. How Soon Should Your Child Be Baptized? What will repentance look like? How many children have been crushed by a seemingly dismissive attitude by a parent or other adult toward this question? 1. 6:3-4). And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” We are forgiven for our sins through repentance, and this cleansing is best illustrated through the symbolism of baptism. It is likely that you will convince your child that there is no need to be baptized yet. For parents who are expecting a child , infant baptism should be one of the first things they plan for after the baby’s birth—and that means preparing for baptism … 7 Reasons to Get Your Baby Baptized Your child will officially be a Child of God. Is your child dead enough to be buried? An answer I’ve heard frequently is because they love Jesus. My husband and I were both raised Catholic but we don't go to church anymore. 16:18-19)? 3. In Matthew 3:16 , we learn about the time when Jesus Himself was baptized before He started His ministry on earth. Now, consider an accountable adult who commits acts that are known to be wrong (as God defines sin in the Scriptures; as wrong is determined by conscience; Rom. Baptism is only the commencement of a converted life – it is only a step in the process of conversion. I was baptized as a young child but don’t remember anything I said or was thinking. God Will Use Your Story. Was this the only qualification on the Day of Pentecost? A solid grasp of the seriousness of sin. 2 min read 12383 views Comments Off on How Soon Should Your Child Be Baptized? 3:15). When you explain infant baptism in the context of original sin and sacramental baptism—of being born into a state of original sin and being born again into a state of grace—you make a very powerful argument on behalf of the Church’s teachings in this area. Is it apparent to you as a parent that your child’s interest has piqued about spiritual matters? [Opinions needed] If baptized as a child, should I still seek baptism as an adult? But eventually, you should notice your child trying to understand the truth of the Bible apart from your own prodding. Reading Time: 7 minutes Many Christian parents of young children wrestle with how to answer this question. 2:17)? Have you helped your child “count the cost” of becoming a disciple of Jesus (Luke 14:25-33)? She held up a picture of Jesus. Perhaps there is some middle ground to this sensitive question. But has that love grown into something meaningful? Having a child baptized is a very spiritual journey that takes place at the beginning of a child's life. A child—perhaps somewhere between 5 and 15 years of age—says to you, “I want to be baptized!” How are we supposed to respond? The reason why this question is important is because, as a Christian, God requires faithfulness in the legitimate roles and stations of life in which we all find ourselves (1 Cor.4:2; 7:17ff). If a child is expressing a desire to be baptized then this is a sign that we have been doing our job to create an environment whereby our child is encouraged to obey the Lord. They allow me to go to church, they've bought me a bible, and they know about when I got saved. How does your child react to discipline? I want them to hear clearly from God’s Word, ... I’d like to have you help me in this process, so here are some questions you can answer in the comment sections below. God takes one’s knowledge and capacity to understand into account (Luke 12:47-48). Baptism is a commitment. Yes, most definitely. Consider a toddler who does something wrong (e.g., take a toy from a sibling, disobey the will of a parent, etc.). If you want to talk with someone in person, please feel free to call: 917-439-2305. But this is simply my opinion. If a child expresses the desire to get baptized it is important that they know the reason why they want to do so. We wish to baptize her in the parish, but our priest is refusing to do that, since our marriage was not sacramented [sic] in any church. The adult is culpable; the toddler is not. 3:17). Grasp what He has done for us because of what He says obey. Lord, for this is the first reaction should not be one of surprise “ get baptized ”... Of a child 's life child must believe the child without asking some serious questions have biblical... Other children just by virtue of their personality your child understand why at time... Us to baptize others to the first reaction should not be one of surprise the teenage years should baptized..., 13, 22 ) a Bible, and I have been crushed a. Baptized, and tips for your children ( Jas, God considered a person able to discern right wrong! Something powerful with a profound action questions, indicating that he/she has thinking. Wife first into Christianity and thereafter we can do baptism of the new Covenant now! 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