What is the difference between Baptism and Dedication?
- Child Dedication - for parents of young children(birth to age 4) who want to publicly acknowledge and honor God as the center of their parenting strategy
- Baptism - for people who have made a commitment to follow Jesus as their "Forever Friend". Baptism is the outward symbol of this inward decision.
We believe that each person has a point in their lives when they are able to make a commitment and decision for Christ, knowing that they have made mistakes (sinned) and need help to restore their relationship with God (forgiveness through Christ Jesus). Since salvation, forgiveness and commitment are abstract concepts, we usually do not expect that very young children will be able to make a true commitment or choice. Some children can come to this decision as early as 5 or 6, but usually the range of 8 to 12 is seen as the "point of accountability". As such, we practice what we call "Child Dedications" for younger children. This ceremony is a time for parents to honor God and ask for God's guidance in raising their little ones. While Dedication does not take the place of the child's personal choice for salvation through Christ, it is an appropriate action for parents to take in thanking God for their child.
We believe that baptism is an outward symbol of an inner decision for Christ. "Believer's Baptism", as we call it, is a chance for people to show others the choice they have made. It is not a requirement for salvation, but a step of humility and obedience as we follow Christ after our salvation is received.
For people that want to be baptized, we will offer a special class to help them understand the "terms" used around being a follower of Christ and what baptism means. These classes are usually 4 to 8 weeks before our Baptism services. This step helps people really understand and articulate their faith.
If you would like more information please email us below, or give us a call. We would be glad to have a chat.