Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.
What Is Baptism?
Baptism is a visible symbol of God's saving work within a person. It is the outward sign of belonging to the people of God—those who have repented and put their faith in Jesus Christ.
You should be baptized if you have both:
- Repented of your sins and believed on Christ alone for salvation.
- Not already been baptized as a believer by immersion.
We want to help every follower of Jesus at Bethlehem to obey his command in this amazing symbol of baptism (Matthew 28:19).
Note: There is a special baptism preparation process for young people under 18 years old. Please see the Youth Baptism Brochure & Schedule for more details.
Step 1: Baptism Class
The baptism class will help answer your questions about baptism and prepare you for this step in following Christ. We invite you to attend a baptism class at your primary campus, where you typically worship and serve. If your schedule does not permit that, we do allow for attendance at another campus, as needed. Please click on one of the dates below to register for a class.
Downtown Campus Classes:
- Wednesdays, November 5—December 10 (6:50–8pm)
(Combined baptism & membership class)
- Thursday, February 12 (6:30–8:30pm)
- Saturday, March 21 (9–11am)
- Wednesdays, April 8—May 6 (6:50–8pm)
(Combined baptism & membership class)
North Campus Classes:
South Campus Classes:
- Saturday, November 15 (8:30–10:30am)
- Saturday, February 21 (8:30–10:30am)
- Saturday, May 30 (8:30–10:30am)
Step 2: Elder Interview
An elder from your primary campus will be assigned to meet with you for a baptism interview. He will listen to your story of how the Lord saved you and seek to confirm that your understanding of baptism is accurate.
Step 3: Baptism Service
After attending the baptism class and completing your elder interview, you may sign up for a baptism service. We encourage you to take this step at the campus where you primarily worship and serve, to receive the support and encouragement of that community of believers.
Baptisms are generally scheduled during Wednesday Connection or Sunday worship services. You will complete a brief baptism testimony to be shared during the service (either read in person or pre-recorded, depending on the service type).
If you are interested in starting the process of baptism, please contact your campus administrative assistant:
- Downtown: Kevin Dau (612-338-7653 x436)
- North: Ruth Gulbranson (612-338-7653 x464)
- South: Ruth Chavis (612-746-2650 x654)
What to Expect When Getting Baptized
Though there may be some variations, here is the basic schedule of a baptism service:
- The pastor meets with baptism candidates 45 minutes before the ceremony to distribute baptism robes, talk through the ceremony, and allow time to get changed.
- At the beginning of the baptism service, the pastor will say a devotional word about baptism.
- The pastor will ask the candidates to join him at the front to share their names, their testimonies, and why they want to be baptized.
- The candidates join the pastor one at a time at the baptismal pool.
- The pastor will ask three questions of each candidate:
- Are you now trusting in Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of your sins and the fulfillment of all God's promises to you, even eternal life?
- Do you forsake Satan and all his works and all his ways?
- Do you intend with God's help to obey Jesus' teaching and follow him as your Lord?
- The pastor will then say these words of baptism and immerse the candidate: "On the profession of your faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and in obedience to his command, I now baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
- After everyone has been baptized, the pastor generally will invite people to come forward and pray in huddles around the baptized people.
- The pastor closes with prayer.