The Biblical Assessment of the Practice of Baptism Amongst Churches

The Biblical Assessment of the Practice of Baptism Amongst Churches

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  • Name: The Biblical Assessment of the Practice of Baptism Amongst Churches
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Chapter one

Introduction

1.1Background of the study

Baptism has been a mean of identifying with Christianity from the beginning, as made known by the several mentions in the Acts of the Apostles as well as the Pauline epistles. Baptism is one of those persistent theological issues since the 16th century which has engaged the Churches in debates. Sincere and honest believers come up to the same scriptures yet over and over again reach very different conclusions. All Christian churches practice the rite of baptism is practice by All Christian churches and as well acknowledge that Baptism was instituted by the Lord Jesus at the same time as an abiding symbol of admission to His church; they do so in large part because Jesus in his last assignment commanded the apostles as well as the church to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matt 28: 19).

It is almost unanimously accepted that baptism in a number of way connected with the commencement of the Christian life; it is one’s commencement into the universal, unseen church as well as the local, visible church (Erickson, 2001). But the questions of what does it denote, who is eligible as well as how must it be organize have received a considerable disagreement regarding baptism and go on to split the faithful. Although it is not likely that we will adequately resolve these questions inside one small paper, we can at least make clear the Reformed position intended for persons who are new to the faith.

Baptism (Greek baptein, “to dip”), in Christian churches, the universal rites of initiation, performed with water, usually in the name of the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) or in the name of Christ. According to Collins Discovery Encyclopaedia, “baptism is a rite of purification by water, a ceremony invoking the grace of God to regenerate the person, free him or her from sin, and make that person a part of the church”. Baptism is a method of sanctifying grace as well as a gospel ministry to the persons of God. This is a mark and seal of the Covenant of Grace picturing what Christ has completed on behalf of his people and sealing salvation to the same. Consequently, children of covenant of parents who believe as well as unbaptized mature converts have to be baptized. Therefore, baptism is more often than not necessary for membership in the church. To Erickson, “baptism is an act of faith and a powerful testimony to the believer’s union with Christ”.

Baptism according to Galatians 3: 27, means united into one body with Christ. So baptism is a complete pledge which takes us into the closest union with Christ. Baptism is not only united into one body with Christ. It is as well union with Him in his death and burial and resurrection. Baptism also takes us into the dying and the rising of the Lord Jesus, and this feature is mainly clearly emphasized by full immersion. In Christianity, the sacrament of admission to the church, symbolized by the pouring or sprinkling of water on the head or by immersion in water. The rite is more often than not followed by the words “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”. (Collins Discovery Encyclopaedia). Frankly speaking, Christians accept as true that after his resurrection, Jesus Christ appeared to his disciples and ordered them to baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. St Paul, in his lessons, proof that baptism mean the wiping away of past sins and the rebirth of the individual into a new life.

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Statement of the problem

Given the situation in the background, it is opined in this study that the baptism is to some extent misleading, and affects negatively the mission in among churches, because of the misunderstanding of baptism in matters of its significance, function, efficacy, and the adequacy of the outward mode. In other words, the lack of consistent knowledge and teaching about baptism seems to be the main factor that enables the study to have a great influence to the mission work. That is why this study will investigate the better understanding of the Scriptural significance and mode of baptism.

The response of the churches toward this challenge to mission by the official integration of immersion baptism is obviously not a satisfactory or final solution alone. The present acceptation to practice modes of baptism by the some churches demands clearly the pastoral responsibility to instruct the congregants about the meaning and function of baptism in a person’s life, the importance of the outward rite and the effect of the inward spiritual act during baptism, and the biblical mode of baptism.

The missionary mandate of the church to baptize and teach becomes much more demanding to be well understood and fulfilled objectively. The persistence of the negligence and inability to resolve the controversy toward baptism can continually lead to the departures of congregants to other denominations, the increase of the re-baptised in hidden occasions, the increasing pressure to the church to practice rebaptism, and divisions in the congregations.

Objective of the study

The objectives of the study are;

  1. To find out the practice of baptism among selected churches in kagara, Rafi local government area of Niger state churches
  2. To find out whether all churches are practicing biblical approval of baptism in selected churches in kagara, Rafi local government area of Niger state
  3. To find out why some churches practice baptism out of biblical concept
  4. To find out the impact of biblical practice of baptism among Christian

Research question

The study formulated the following research questions

  1. What is the practice of baptism among selected churches in kagara, Rafi local government area of Niger state churches?
  2. Do all churches are practicing biblical approval of baptism in selected churches in kagara, Rafi local government area of Niger state?
  3. why do some churches practice baptism out of biblical concept?
  4. What is the impact of biblical practice of baptism among Christian?

Significance of the study

The study will be very significant to students and Christian as a whole. the study will give a clear insight on the biblical assessment of the practice of baptism amongst churches. The study will enlighten the Christian reason to abide to biblical baptism concept. They will also be enlightening the consequences of practicing baptism out of bible. The study will also serve as a reference to other researcher that will embark on the related topic

Scope of the study

The scope of the study will covers the biblical assessment of the practice of baptism amongst churches. The study will be limited to selected churches in kagara, Rafi local government area of Niger state.

Limitation of the study

The following factors poses to be a limitation during the course of this research

Financial constraint– Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint– The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.8 Definition of terms

Biblical: The Bible is a collection of religious texts or scriptures sacred in Christianity, Judaism, Samaritanism, and many other religions. The Bible is an anthology a compilation of texts of a variety of forms originally written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Koine Greek

Practice: the actual application or use of an idea, belief, or method, as opposed to theories relating to it.

Baptism: Baptism is a Christian sacrament of admission and adoption, almost invariably with the use of water, into Christianity. It may be performed by sprinkling or pouring water on the head, or by immersing in water either partially or completely, traditionally three times, once for each person of the Trinity

Church: a building used for public Christian worship.

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