That is, is there any other step a person has to take first, such as be a certain age, or take a class, etc?
Acts 8:36 - 38
KJV - 36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? 37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
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In Mark 16:16 Jesus said "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned." But what does it mean to believe? What is my spiritual condition? I am separated from God - spiritually dead in my trespasses and sins. What did Jesus do for me? He suffered and died on a cross (in my place) to pay the penalty for my sin. Then rose again to provide me with the gift of eternal life as a brand new person. What does Jesus want me to do? He wants me to confess my sin, desire to repent and accept him as my personal savior. And he wants me to commit (pledge) to follow him as the Lord of my life, every day for the rest of my life. In my view, Once I have done that, then I have "Believed" according to the scripture. Then Jesus wants me to get baptized. Why should I get baptized? My baptism declares to the whole world, that is, all human beings, all angelic spirits and all demonic spirits, what happened spiritually in my life. My plunging into the water in baptism signifies that I was united with Christ in his death so my sinful nature is dead and gone. My rising up out of the water signifies that Jesus has given me the gift of eternal life as a brand new creation (a new person). As in the case of the Ethiopian eunuch and other salvation stories (such as, Crispus the synagogue ruler), baptism is expected to follow immediately (or imminently) after we have believed. Any delay in getting baptized is direct disobedience to Jesus's command and will result in "disciplinary measures" from the Father. Scripture gives us several examples of whole households believing and then being baptized. That would include parents, servants and children of all ages. When is a child old enough to believe and be baptized? In my view, as soon as a child is old enough to understand a parent's instructions regarding what is right and wrong. Remember, Jesus told us we had to have a faith like a little child if we wanted to see the kingdom of God (ie to be saved). Don't delay getting baptized once you have believed. Do it now and you will receive God's blessings so overflowing that you can't hold on to all of them but they will spill out of your life to give other people a hunger and thirst for what you have received from Jesus.
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