Hello brothers and sisters (saints!)
I have a question/admonishment, perhaps, to ask in sincerity.
It seems very clear in the Bible that those who can baptize people are not just pastors and shepherds, but all believers. Correct me if I’m wrong? I want to provoke Biblical thinking here and hopefully fruitfulness in all of us living out our call to discipleship.
There’s been much said about how pastors and shepherds do not “carry the church. they lead it.” This is Biblical. they are called to shepherd God’s people to go out and do the work of the ministry, such as going out and making disciples. I think we are seeing more preachers preach this now, which is great, to show that Biblical everything should not be put on your pastor. the pastor’s job is to equip you and I!
If we want to make that clearer though, I think that the church should go back to equipping all saints to go ahead and baptize people when they come to faith in Jesus Christ. Here’s why:
I believe this is God’s will and God’s heart, for Jesus told His disciples to do it.
We too are Jesus’ disciples.
And if we are going to take the call and make the great commission our own, as is often preached, we need to preach the whole of Jesus’ words in the very great commission too.
And this is what he said in Matthew 28:16-20: 16 But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated. 17 When they saw Him, they worshiped Him ; but some were doubtful. 18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
The phrase “make disciples of all nations” I feel, at least in the general Western church, are separated in practice and in preaching from the words “baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” As in only the pastors, from what I’ve seen, do it.
Though I think I will be encouraged by your responses in what I learn as I’m sure in many of your experiences and churches I will see that you do actually do this and baptize people.
I think we generally focus on the “Teaching them to observe all that Jesus commanded” and trying to make disciples, but I think it should be taught more that believers and not just pastors and leaders can baptize others.
In my humble opinion, this is important.
So then, I seek thoughts and reflections on this. As good evangelism is teaching and practicing the whole of God’s Word and God’s counsel.I think the western church and we need to start learning to baptize people and live out the whole of Jesus’ commands. Jesus even said that He who loves Hill keep His commandments.
I intend this only as a conviction, as I am coming to think more about this myself and feel convicted to do it and have not baptized someone yet, but do focus on evangelism on sharing the Gospel and teaching about Jesus’ commands.
Bless you all!!!