Baptism – Adults and Responsible Persons

I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols.  I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. 

Ezekiel 36:25-27

Repent and be baptized every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, so that your sins may be forgiven.  And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.

Acts 2:38, 39

Paul and Silas answered the jailor at Philippi :

“Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved – you and your household”.  Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house.  At that hour of the night – about midnight – the jailor took Paul and Silas and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptized. 

            Acts 16:31-33

You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 

Galatians 3:26-27

The minister says:

Dear Christian friends, God’s word tell us that everyone is born with a sinful nature, that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.  Our Lord Jesus Christ said that no one can naturally enter the kingdom of heaven, but must be born again.  Baptism is the external and visible sign of the new birth, of the washing away of sin and of becoming a member of God’s family.  But, it is of no effect without the inward and spiritual work of the Holy Spirit who first brings us to repentance and then to trust in the perfect sacrifice for sins made on the cross by our Saviour Jesus Christ.  Therefore, let us pray that God will graciously grant our brother(s) and sister(s) who have come here for baptism that which by their sinful nature they cannot have, that they may be born of the Holy Spirit and made living members of Christ’s holy church.  Amen.

Minister: Let us say the Lord’s Prayer – and the next prayer :

Almighty God, heavenly Father, who sent Your Son into the world to save sinners, by living a life of perfect obedience to Your holy law, by suffering and dying upon the cross, by rising from the dead and ascending into heaven; mercifully grant to these Your servants, who have come to baptism, to be cleansed from their sins, born again to everlasting life, and that they may be filled with your Holy Spirit, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Then follow Bible readings from the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians chapter 10 verses 1-6 and Mark’s gospel chapter 1 verses 4-11.  Both readings begin : “Hear the word of God as it is written in … chapter … verses …” and conclude; “Here ends of reading from God’s word”.

First Bible reading

For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea.  They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.  They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.  Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered over the desert.  Now these things occurred as examples to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did.

Second Bible reading

And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.  The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him.  Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.  John wore clothing made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his wait, and he ate locusts and wild honey.  And this was his message; “After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie.  I baptize you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit”.

At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.  And Jesus was coming up out of the water, He saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on Him like a dove.  And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased”.

The Minister asks those who have come for baptism to stand.  He says to them :

Minister: Brothers and sisters in Christ, in the presence of God and this congregation do you renounce the devil and all his works, the empty display, greed and false values of the world, and the sinful desires of the flesh, so that You will not follow them or be led by them?

Answer: I renounce them all.

Minister: Do you believe in God the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth ?

Answer: I do believe in Him.

Minister: Do you believe in Jesus Christ His only Son our Lord ?

Answer: I do.  He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and was  born of the virgin Mary.  He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried.  He descended into hell, and on the third day rose again. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.  He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

Minister: Do you believe in the Holy Spirit; Christ’s holy universal church; the fellowship of Christians; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting?

Answer: All this I firmly believe.

Minister: Will you then obediently keep God’s holy will and commandments and serve Him faithfully all your life ?

Answer: I will.

Minister: Merciful God, grant that your old nature may be so buried and that the new nature will grow in its place.

Congregation: Amen.

Minister: Grant that your sinful desires may die and Christian values live in their place.

Congregation: Amen.

Minister: Grant that you may have strength and endurance to win the victory over the devil, the world and your sinful nature.

Congregation: Amen.

The minister baptizes them in water saying :

Minister: … I baptize you in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

We received you into the congregation of Christ’s flock and sign you with the sign of the cross (here the minister makes a cross on their foreheads) to show that  you will not be ashamed to confess the faith of Christ crucified and to fight bravely under His name against sin, the world, and the devil, and to continue Christ’s faithful soldier and servant to your life’s end.  Amen.

Minister : Let us pray together :

Heavenly Father, we thank You that You hear our prayers; made in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ for these our brothers and sisters who according to Your word have been baptized in Your Name; that they might receive new birth by Your Holy Spirit, become Your own children by adoption, and living members of Your holy church.  Grant that they may die to sin and live to righteousness, being crucified with Christ and raised with Him, and that they, with the rest of Your children may inherit Your eternal kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Minister: To God’s gracious mercy and protection we commit you.  The Lord bless and keep you.  The Lord make His face to shine on you and be gracious to you.  The Lord give you peace both now and for ever.  Amen.