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menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 07:31 PM
I put this here so the whole world hopefully - lol - won`t respond to it. :::sigh:::

I have a big, big problem, that has been ongoing, but it reached its peak today. And I need good, solid answers from qualified people, because I am just lost here...

I have contacted a few pastors, 4 altogether as of today, about being baptised. And as of today, all 4 have more or less refused to baptise me unless I become a member of their church. Two of these churches are denominational, two are non-denominational.

I was stunned when the first one said no, but I thought, well, I`ll find another one. But I can`t seem to find someone who is just willing to baptise me, without me having to join the church. And I don`t want to join any of these churches, because I am not sure of their doctrines - I just want a place to go and worship - and I want to be baptised...

Now I know that my knowledge is very limited in most things, and those of you who know me know this, too. So what I need to know is this: are there things about pastors and churches and baptisms that I obviously don`t know and need to learn about? Do the churches do the baptisms from the business side of running the church? Or what?

I am just shocked, now, really. I never gave it much thought before, but I always thought that ANY pastor would be willing to baptise ANYBODY who wanted to do this act as a public commitment to the Lord.

So please, if I am way off-base here, someone please enlighten me. I cannot even adequately express how I feel about this... I feel like I have been pole-axed... and my main thought is this: how can the preachers refuse someone??? This seems so WRONG! :(

Clifton
Mar 30th 2008, 08:54 PM
I put this here so the whole world hopefully - lol - won`t respond to it. :::sigh:::

I have a big, big problem, that has been ongoing, but it reached its peak today. And I need good, solid answers from qualified people, because I am just lost here...

I have contacted a few pastors, 4 altogether as of today, about being baptised. And as of today, all 4 have more or less refused to baptise me unless I become a member of their church. Two of these churches are denominational, two are non-denominational.

I was stunned when the first one said no, but I thought, well, I`ll find another one. But I can`t seem to find someone who is just willing to baptise me, without me having to join the church. And I don`t want to join any of these churches, because I am not sure of their doctrines - I just want a place to go and worship - and I want to be baptised...

Now I know that my knowledge is very limited in most things, and those of you who know me know this, too. So what I need to know is this: are there things about pastors and churches and baptisms that I obviously don`t know and need to learn about? Do the churches do the baptisms from the business side of running the church? Or what?

I am just shocked, now, really. I never gave it much thought before, but I always thought that ANY pastor would be willing to baptise ANYBODY who wanted to do this act as a public commitment to the Lord.

So please, if I am way off-base here, someone please enlighten me. I cannot even adequately express how I feel about this... I feel like I have been pole-axed... and my main thought is this: how can the preachers refuse someone??? This seems so WRONG! :(


Well one thing for sure, you sure did find out the Churches you would not choose to go to, for good reasonings too.

I do not know what the element (or, "instrument") for the baptism you want is, but from the context, I assume the element is "water".

FWIW, let me tell you, "commands / instructions" in Greek are in the "Imperative Mood". As far as the Greek Verb βαπτιζω (bap-tid-zo) goes, and its conjugations, there are none of the verb(s) from Christ in "Imperative Mood" (though it looks that way in the English). You already got the best, pure and highest baptism there is once you were "born from above" (John 3:3): the spiritual baptism "into His Name".

Nonetheless, Baptism, or immersion, by/with water had come a bit of tradition for Christians, and that is what you seem to want to do, so my recommendation would be to decide where you like to congregate / assembly, (checking places out), and if things are right, then seek the baptism with water after you are seated in that place of worship;

I was in my 3rd Church before I was ever immersed into water. My late uncle was baptized in water in a bathtub, which my dad and My late uncle's best friend partook in for him.

Best wishes on this.

baxpack7
Mar 30th 2008, 08:54 PM
I can't speak for the rules of other churches, but in our church, we don't have formal membership, yet we have baptized people without requiring them to be members. Now, I know that in my previous church, they wanted a commitment to that church in order to be baptized into that congregation. I will say however, that was where I wanted to be to fellowship and to worship. For the most part, I believe that it depends on the church and there rules as to whether or not you have to be a member to be baptized. I hope that this was helpful and that you have a God-blessed day!!

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 09:09 PM
Well one thing for sure, you sure did find out the Churches you would not choose to go to, for good reasonings too.

I do not know what the element (or, "instrument") for the baptism you want is, but from the context, I assume the element is "water".

FWIW, let me tell you, "commands / instructions" in Greek are in the "Imperative Mood". As far as the Greek Verb βαπτιζω (bap-tid-zo) goes, and its conjugations, there are none of the verb(s) from Christ in "Imperative Mood" (though it looks that way in the English). You already got the best, pure and highest baptism there is once you were "born from above" (John 3:3): the spiritual baptism "into His Name".

Nonetheless, Baptism, or immersion, by/with water had come a bit of tradition for Christians, and that is what you seem to want to do, so my recommendation would be to decide where you like to congregate / assembly, (checking places out), and if things are right, then seek the baptism with water after you are seated in that place of worship;

I was in my 3rd Church before I was ever immersed into water. My late uncle was baptized in water in a bathtub, which my dad and My late uncle's best friend partook in for him.

Best wishes on this.


You are right about one thing - I DO know where I WON`T go!

Yes, water baptism is what I want... the Bible speaks of it, that we need to do it... what if I get run over and killed by a bus before I can get baptised? Will God hold that against me? If it is so necessary, why wouldn`t the pastors do it? And would God hold it against the pastors for denying me what I needed to make it into heaven???

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 09:14 PM
I can't speak for the rules of other churches, but in our church, we don't have formal membership, yet we have baptized people without requiring them to be members. Now, I know that in my previous church, they wanted a commitment to that church in order to be baptized into that congregation. I will say however, that was where I wanted to be to fellowship and to worship. For the most part, I believe that it depends on the church and there rules as to whether or not you have to be a member to be baptized. I hope that this was helpful and that you have a God-blessed day!!

This is what disturbs me so - are the churches so in the flesh that they diminish the imortant things of God?

Baptism, to me, is VERY important - I would think much more so than joining the church.

Is gaining a tithe-paying member more important to the pastor of the church, than providing this essential act, to ensure someone`s making it into heaven???

karenoka27
Mar 30th 2008, 09:15 PM
If you are saved and get run over by a bus without being baptized you will still go to heaven...;)

I don't think it is surprising that a church would baptize and then have you become a member. We belong to churches to use the gifts that God gives us. If you are going to be obedient in baptism, then you would want to be obedient in using what He gives you to edify the church. I would suggest looking for a church that you would like to be a part of and then get baptized..and then....go to church.

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 09:28 PM
How terribly sad this all makes me! I am feeling like I have to buy my way into the water...

They are wanting me to become a member, begin paying tithes and all that, and THEN be baptised...

And all I want, and have wanted for some months, is to give myself to the Lord in this manner NOW...

RoadWarrior
Mar 30th 2008, 09:40 PM
How terribly sad this all makes me! I am feeling like I have to buy my way into the water...

They are wanting me to become a member, begin paying tithes and all that, and THEN be baptised...

And all I want, and have wanted for some months, is to give myself to the Lord in this manner NOW...

Another Christian can baptize you, at home in your own bathtub. It does not have to be a pastor of a church. A pool or a hottub is good, as well, if you have access to one of those.

Who is your nearest and dearest Christian friend?

karenoka27
Mar 30th 2008, 09:42 PM
Why do you want to be baptized if you don't want to go to church?

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 09:55 PM
Another Christian can baptize you, at home in your own bathtub. It does not have to be a pastor of a church. A pool or a hottub is good, as well, if you have access to one of those.

Who is your nearest and dearest Christian friend?

Oooooh! Let me give this some thought - thank you! :)

amazzin
Mar 30th 2008, 10:03 PM
Okay, why do you want a pastor to baptize you? Any believer can....

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 10:03 PM
Why do you want to be baptized if you don't want to go to church?

I don`t want to JOIN a church unless I know and agree with their doctrine. I think it would be false of me to join just long enough to get baptised...although I would like to... ;)

The churches I spoke of want three months of classes before baptism but require me to join the church at the start of all this... how can I do this? it seems like the worst sort of hypocrisy to me... :(

How can I find out all their doctrine? "Join us and come to services!"

No, no, no... thanks, but no thanks...

This is so... I don`t even know what it is... it seems all messed up to me...

menJesus
Mar 30th 2008, 10:05 PM
Okay, why do you want a pastor to baptize you? Any believer can....

I thought I needed a pastor to do this...

You are a pastor, yes? Please explain this to me!

amazzin
Mar 30th 2008, 10:10 PM
I thought I needed a pastor to do this...

You are a pastor, yes? Please explain this to me!

A pastor has a responsibility to his church and must abide by the by-laws of either the church or denomination. Basically, many are bound to follow the process that's laid out for them in writing. It's not the pastors decision but many times the leadership above them

But nothing excludes brothers and sisters in Christ from baptizing. They are not bound by the by-laws and are free to baptize. But with baptism there is a responsibility. Thatis, to ensure the person being baptized is discipled and growing in Christ. This is why the by-laws are written.

Clifton
Mar 30th 2008, 10:50 PM
You are right about one thing - I DO know where I WON`T go!

Yes, water baptism is what I want... the Bible speaks of it, that we need to do it... what if I get run over and killed by a bus before I can get baptised?

You will be with The Lord (and those here on Earth will envy you;)), just as if those whom called on the name of the Lord (Romans 10:13 (http://net.bible.org/verse.php?book=Romans&chapter=10&verse=13)) that were hanging on a cross, head under a guillotine with the blade about to come down, in the electric chair, going over the bank in their car, airplane going down, and any other point on the brink of death that called upon the name of the Lord.


Will God hold that against me?Well, putting aside getting water poured over one's head, and you are referring to being submerged, I want to ask you: What about people in the past centuries that did not have bath water and bath tubs, and had to go to land water (river, etc.), and not to mention, had to wait for the warm season, or those that had no warm season at all thus could not participate in such?

And despite the growth of civilizations, this is still the case in some areas of the World. Thus, Christ, being whom He is, knew this, and how it will be for people of the Earth, and that is no doubt why he never commanded it. So, no, God would not hold it against you. Some people (and I am not one of them) are against water baptisms, because they feel it denies the saving grace of Christ, etc. etc. etc. and some people place the materialistic water over the spiritual immersions.

Nonetheless, since you wish to participate in it as a ceremonial rite and oath, perhaps you can do partake in it like my late Uncle did - in a bathtub, pool, etc. (and Jacuzzi would be cool :), pardon the pun) and have one or more relatives and friends whom this "testimony" can be present to.;)


If it is so necessary, why wouldn't the pastors do it? And would God hold it against the pastors for denying me what I needed to make it into heaven???Perhaps a higher power is restraining them because that probably know that it is commandment of men (a Latin-Roman constructed commandment to be precise), and you do not 'need' it to get into Heaven.

I favor it because Christ partook in it, and in memory of John The Immerser, which prepare The Way.

Can you have it done like my late uncle did, like a bathtub?

As for the Great Commission which some allude to, you can find it in the substantiated and undisputed texts of the following:
John 20:19-23 (http://net.bible.org/passage.php?passage=John%2020:19-23)
Luke 24:36-49 (http://net.bible.org/passage.php?passage=Luke%2024:36-49)

Luke was the more informative one, and provided additional information on The Great Commission - note his text is 14 verses long.

Blessings.

Clifton
Mar 30th 2008, 10:57 PM
Another Christian can baptize you, at home in your own bathtub. It does not have to be a pastor of a church. A pool or a hottub is good, as well, if you have access to one of those.

Who is your nearest and dearest Christian friend?


Yea! ;) That was want I was saying is an option. My late uncle partook in a water immersion in his own bathtub, however, I'm not quite sure if he just did that to make his dad happy;

However, he did become a believer in his last days, and we are comforted in regards to him, that he is with The Lord. Cancer took him out, but he did live a pretty full life and enjoyed life in general. But it has been hard on his dad, my mom, and the surviving brother.

Blessings.

Clifton
Mar 30th 2008, 11:00 PM
menJesus - it appears you have started what is going to be a hot thread - it is already on page 2 and early yet. Nonetheless,
we are with you and you have our support! ;)

TrustingFollower
Mar 31st 2008, 01:07 AM
John the baptist nor Paul went to seminary and became official pastors and they both baptized in the bible. How are we to say that only a man made sanctioned pastor can baptize. I believe it is as our friend Amazzin has said,
But nothing excludes brothers and sisters in Christ from baptizing

moonglow
Mar 31st 2008, 02:51 AM
A pastor has a responsibility to his church and must abide by the by-laws of either the church or denomination. Basically, many are bound to follow the process that's laid out for them in writing. It's not the pastors decision but many times the leadership above them

But nothing excludes brothers and sisters in Christ from baptizing. They are not bound by the by-laws and are free to baptize. But with baptism there is a responsibility. Thatis, to ensure the person being baptized is discipled and growing in Christ. This is why the by-laws are written.

Exactly. They aren't saying you HAVE to tithe either to be a member. There isn't a form you sign saying you will give so much money a month to go to that church. People give what they can afford and sometimes all they can afford is giving their time to the church...meaning help out with cleaning up or helping set up for after church dinners...the is always a need for people to help out in church. Many can't afford to give anything at all...maybe a dollar or two once in awhile but that is about it. The church isn't looking for money..I am truly sorry you took it that way.

They DO have to pay the bills on keeping the lights and heat on, and the grounds mowed and the trash picked up...that is why everyone pitches in to pay for those things, plus to support the pastor...(tithing)...plus sending money to ministries overseas, to help the homeless, the needy and so on. With the church and the work they do in our communities all the time, alot of people would really be hurting. The members also donate canned goods, clothes, school supplies, coats for children and on and on to give to local places that then take those things to give directly to those that need it the most.

But no one pays their bills too keep the physical church running..that is why they have tithes. But as I said, people can do other things if possible...even if its just to pray for a church, as a means of tithing. They aren't expecting people to buy their memberships to their church by any means. The church I was baptized in...while I was a member I rarely gave any money...but I gave in other ways as best as I could. Since I had been a member for awhile and was an adult the pastor knew I knew what I needed too just from being in church and his bible studies...so I didn't need to go to any classes (that I remember anyway).

A pastor IS responsible for the person they baptize and take it VERY seriously as you do...this is why they require so much. Its not to 'get you' in some way at all...but to make sure you FULLY understand what you are doing (this is why they require taking the classes...being a member shows you are committed to the 'body of Christ' which is the church. I really don't have a problem with how they responded to you actually. As amazzin said, the pastor HAS to follow certain guidelines here. They don't have a choice on that. I wouldn't feel comfortable is doing this either for a complete stranger.

God bless

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 08:33 AM
A pastor has a responsibility to his church and must abide by the by-laws of either the church or denomination. Basically, many are bound to follow the process that's laid out for them in writing. It's not the pastors decision but many times the leadership above them

But nothing excludes brothers and sisters in Christ from baptizing. They are not bound by the by-laws and are free to baptize. But with baptism there is a responsibility. That is, to ensure the person being baptized is discipled and growing in Christ. This is why the by-laws are written.

Thank you so much for this explanation. I had no idea that there are rules and regulations the pastors must follow, relating to baptizing someone ( only maybe with the Catholics). So this is why they want the joining and the classes... hmmm... I wish the pastors had explained this to me, it would have been better than my feeling like they were disinterested in baptizing me, which, sad to say, WAS the impression I got from them...

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 08:43 AM
menJesus - it appears you have started what is going to be a hot thread - it is already on page 2 and early yet. Nonetheless,
we are with you and you have our support! ;)

Thanks, Clifton! I am just trying to reason all this out... I know 0 about church laws and rules, but I know this: if I was a pastor and someone wanted to be baptized ( having come to me in all seriousness, as I went to them), I think I would grab them by the coat and RUN for the river! ;)

In the meantime, I will stay well off the curbs, and watch those buses. ;)

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:03 AM
Moonglow wrote: "Exactly. They aren't saying you HAVE to tithe either to be a member. There isn't a form you sign saying you will give so much money a month to go to that church. People give what they can afford and sometimes all they can afford is giving their time to the church...meaning help out with cleaning up or helping set up for after church dinners...the is always a need for people to help out in church. Many can't afford to give anything at all...maybe a dollar or two once in awhile but that is about it. The church isn't looking for money..I am truly sorry you took it that way. "

Moonglow, they ALL made it plain to me when I spoke with them, that paying tithes, along with signing the book, was one of the requirements for being a member, and thus being baptized at a later point in time. Two of them even explained to me the bank deduction program they use for tithing...

This is exactly what has me so upset, and as I stated in my earlier post, it made me feel like I had to buy my way into the water...

I don`t have any problem paying tithes - the Lord knows I am a cheerful giver... and I don`t have any problems with working in and for the church.

I do have a problem with committing myself to something I don`t know, mainly the church doctrines, as it seems like every church has different beliefs.

What I want is a church that I can go to without being bound to. It seems to me that attending church and worshipping the Lord should be something we do in freedom and in truth...God is a Spirit, not bound by the laws of man...

Duane Morse
Mar 31st 2008, 09:21 AM
"I do have a problem with committing myself to something I don`t know, mainly the church doctrines, as it seems like every church has different beliefs.

What I want is a church that I can go to without being bound to."

You can't. If you go to it, you are bound to it.

Why would you want to be baptized in a church that you disagree with?


Give up the notion of water baptism until you find a church that you can agree doctrinally with.
Then join with that church, and be baptized in that church.

Anything else, it seems to me, would be purely window dressing.

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 10:25 AM
"I do have a problem with committing myself to something I don`t know, mainly the church doctrines, as it seems like every church has different beliefs.

What I want is a church that I can go to without being bound to."

You can't. If you go to it, you are bound to it.

Why would you want to be baptized in a church that you disagree with?


Give up the notion of water baptism until you find a church that you can agree doctrinally with.
Then join with that church, and be baptized in that church.

Anything else, it seems to me, would be purely window dressing.


Being baptized is my commitment to GOD, not to the church its done in...

I am not into the once-saved-always-saved doctrine (?) and I would hate to be put out for speaking in tongues, although if I did I did... ;) There are other things as well, but I could live with them, as far as attendance went... but not membership... :(

What part of my problem is, I had no idea there was so much protocol (?) for baptism... I can see their side of it, but still, I want it done, and I want it NOW! :::cheesy grin:::

Teke
Mar 31st 2008, 01:12 PM
I do have a problem with committing myself to something I don`t know, mainly the church doctrines, as it seems like every church has different beliefs.

What I want is a church that I can go to without being bound to. It seems to me that attending church and worshipping the Lord should be something we do in freedom and in truth...God is a Spirit, not bound by the laws of man...


I am finding it hard to believe what you've experienced. Project Peter, who is an evangelist here, has went to a member of this boards home to baptize them. Maybe he can come see you. :)

Of course anyone who baptizes you will make sure you are aware that you are being baptized into Christ, a responsibility of His Church Body. "For as many as have been baptized have put on Christ".

ProjectPeter
Mar 31st 2008, 01:54 PM
Being baptized is my commitment to GOD, not to the church its done in...

I am not into the once-saved-always-saved doctrine (?) and I would hate to be put out for speaking in tongues, although if I did I did... ;) There are other things as well, but I could live with them, as far as attendance went... but not membership... :(

What part of my problem is, I had no idea there was so much protocol (?) for baptism... I can see their side of it, but still, I want it done, and I want it NOW! :::cheesy grin:::
If you are comfortable with doing so... send me a PM with your city or general location in the midwest and I'll find someone to baptize you... worse case scenario... road trip! ;)

moonglow
Mar 31st 2008, 03:53 PM
Moonglow wrote: "Exactly. They aren't saying you HAVE to tithe either to be a member. There isn't a form you sign saying you will give so much money a month to go to that church. People give what they can afford and sometimes all they can afford is giving their time to the church...meaning help out with cleaning up or helping set up for after church dinners...the is always a need for people to help out in church. Many can't afford to give anything at all...maybe a dollar or two once in awhile but that is about it. The church isn't looking for money..I am truly sorry you took it that way. "

Moonglow, they ALL made it plain to me when I spoke with them, that paying tithes, along with signing the book, was one of the requirements for being a member, and thus being baptized at a later point in time. Two of them even explained to me the bank deduction program they use for tithing...

This is exactly what has me so upset, and as I stated in my earlier post, it made me feel like I had to buy my way into the water...

I don`t have any problem paying tithes - the Lord knows I am a cheerful giver... and I don`t have any problems with working in and for the church.

I do have a problem with committing myself to something I don`t know, mainly the church doctrines, as it seems like every church has different beliefs.

What I want is a church that I can go to without being bound to. It seems to me that attending church and worshipping the Lord should be something we do in freedom and in truth...God is a Spirit, not bound by the laws of man...

Ewwwwww...ok that makes more sense as to why you were so upset. I would be too! good grief. Now I have had a churche I was a member of ask for an estimate of what a person could give...they did this to figure their budget so they didn't overspend on something. Like lets say they had water damage and needed some carpet replaced. If the budget was large enough they could just do it...if not, they might have to ask for a special offering to cover the cost to replace it. Can't have moldy carpet in a church! Health problems for everyone!

But yea, I don't think I would want to have any part of a church like that. How sad! :(

I am sure PP can help you get this done. :)

God bless

Duane Morse
Mar 31st 2008, 08:27 PM
Being baptized is my commitment to GOD, not to the church its done in...

I am not into the once-saved-always-saved doctrine (?) and I would hate to be put out for speaking in tongues, although if I did I did... ;) There are other things as well, but I could live with them, as far as attendance went... but not membership... :(

What part of my problem is, I had no idea there was so much protocol (?) for baptism... I can see their side of it, but still, I want it done, and I want it NOW! :::cheesy grin:::
I realize that, and I agree that being baptized is a commitment to God alone.

Trouble is, the churches these days see it is being a commitment to them personally. It is more a a denominational thing now, than it is a Body of Christ thing. Or so it seems to me.

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:03 PM
I am finding it hard to believe what you've experienced. Project Peter, who is an evangelist here, has went to a member of this boards home to baptize them. Maybe he can come see you. :)

Of course anyone who baptizes you will make sure you are aware that you are being baptized into Christ, a responsibility of His Church Body. "For as many as have been baptized have put on Christ".

I am sorry you are finding this hard to believe, and I do hope by saying that, that you are not inferring that I am not telling the truth, here...

I came on here, as I said, to find out why this is happening. Obviously there are things in place that I have been unaware of, but now that I am finding out how the church system works, I can go on from there.

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:07 PM
If you are comfortable with doing so... send me a PM with your city or general location in the midwest and I'll find someone to baptize you... worse case scenario... road trip! ;)

I think you are maybe 1000 or so miles from me, so thanks, but I would NEVER put something like this on you.

However, I will certainly pm you. Thank you so much - maybe you know of someone around here who will do this for me... thank you thank you thank you!

Teke
Mar 31st 2008, 09:21 PM
I am sorry you are finding this hard to believe, and I do hope by saying that, that you are not inferring that I am not telling the truth, here...

No, I do not believe your not telling the truth. :hug:
I was just expressing my confusion about it. I do not know how things are for Christians in other areas of the world.


I came on here, as I said, to find out why this is happening. Obviously there are things in place that I have been unaware of, but now that I am finding out how the church system works, I can go on from there.

Well, the church does feel responsible for you once your baptized. So I'm sure there are good intentions. It would seem to me that the priests or preachers would also take into consideration your concerns. I know mine would.

But I'm sure PP can help. :)

diffangle
Mar 31st 2008, 09:23 PM
Another Christian can baptize you, at home in your own bathtub. It does not have to be a pastor of a church. A pool or a hottub is good, as well, if you have access to one of those.

Who is your nearest and dearest Christian friend?
Yes indeed. I was baptized in the river by a friend of the family. :)

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:24 PM
Ewwwwww...ok that makes more sense as to why you were so upset. I would be too! good grief. Now I have had a churche I was a member of ask for an estimate of what a person could give...they did this to figure their budget so they didn't overspend on something. Like lets say they had water damage and needed some carpet replaced. If the budget was large enough they could just do it...if not, they might have to ask for a special offering to cover the cost to replace it. Can't have moldy carpet in a church! Health problems for everyone!

But yea, I don't think I would want to have any part of a church like that. How sad! :(

I am sure PP can help you get this done. :)

God bless

moonglow, I have literally sat and cried over this... all I wanted was 15 minutes of a pastor`s time some Sunday morning... or evening... or whenever ... and I thought that having a baptizing in the church would be good for the church in general, whether the person was a member or not... so finally, after the fourth turn-down, I thought, well, I must be missing something here, and so I came to the board to find out what is going on...

It is sad... it seemed like the churches were more about business than about souls, and I`m still having a hard time understanding why they said no, unless its like amazzin said and they have rules to follow... but still... I keep looking... I WILL get baptized, if I have to start hanging out down on the riverbank on Sundays to find a church group doing a "baptizin`" I`ll hang around til I can get in line with the rest of them! ;)

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:32 PM
No, I do not believe your not telling the truth. :hug:
I was just expressing my confusion about it. I do not know how things are for Christians in other areas of the world.


Well, the church does feel responsible for you once your baptized. So I'm sure there are good intentions. It would seem to me that the priests or preachers would also take into consideration your concerns. I know mine would.

But I'm sure PP can help. :)

Well, now, I had never considered the fact that the church feels responsible for me once I am baptized... that must be part of why they are reluctant to baptize a stranger/non-member... I can accept that a lot easier than I can accept their rule of me commiting myself and my tithes to the church, whether I am willing or not... I would agree to tithe sooner than signing the church register...

menJesus
Mar 31st 2008, 09:53 PM
I realize that, and I agree that being baptized is a commitment to God alone.

Trouble is, the churches these days see it is being a commitment to them personally. It is more a a denominational thing now, than it is a Body of Christ thing. Or so it seems to me.

Well, it seems this way to me, too, and that is what upsets me so. And to make it worse, I have spoken to a few other people who have had the same problem, here. How sad is that!

I know one thing for sure... I will not - I CANnot - sign a church register without meaning it... I feel as though that would be deceitful of me, and I just cannot do it, no matter how much I want the benefit of baptism...

I don`t know... maybe I am all wrong here... at least now I can see things through someone elses` eyes... that helps...

RevLogos
Apr 1st 2008, 03:54 AM
Couple of thoughts:

I was in need of a quick baptism once I was saved. It felt right. But all churches will have some rule that you need to attend some sort of class, at least an hour before a pastor will baptize you. I had to wait a month or so for the same reason you are. But I liked the church and the people there. I attended the class with two others. After class the pastor said he would schedule a baptism at the next church service or whenever.

I said, how about right now? We were in the church and the baptismal font was sitting right there. Two of us were baptized right then and there. The pastor was all bubbly, called it an Acts 8 moment. For him it was, but I had waited. Nevertheless it felt great!

You should be able to find a pastor will come to your house, discuss it so that he is comfortable, and baptize you right then and there. Mine would have I'm sure.

But don't let the fact a church has rules for baptism be the only determining factor.

Second thought:

The Bible does not say you have to be baptized by a pastor of a church. You can be baptized by any Christian. Got a good friend, a Christian, with a pool?

If we lived in the same city, I'd baptize you tonight! But - I also know you from these forums and I believe you are a solid Christian believer. I wouldn't baptize just anybody off the street until I was comfortable that they really understood exactly what they were doing first.

Baptism is serious business. It's like signing a legal contract that binds you to have Christ live in you in exchange for accepting His punishment on the Cross. (Being saved is like deciding to sign the contract).

Diggindeeper
Apr 1st 2008, 04:54 AM
MenJesus, the church I attend does NOT make you become a member if you want to be baptised. There are still a few that don't baptise you into the church MEMBERSHIP.

But, I do want to add that you are right now experiencing something similar to what my husband and I ran into at number of years ago. Here's what happened. I started out in a Southern Baptist church, where I had been saved and baptised at the age of ten. Well, at that young age, I just automatically assumed all churches were exactly like that one. I was a little child, for heaven's sake!

But, I grew up and married. My husband had also gone to a Southern Baptist church, and was also baptised at a young age. So, we BOTH assumed one church was as good as another.

But later we moved to another county, and it was too far to drive back and forth. My husband did not go all the time, but me and my 3 children did. We wanted to be at church any time we could. Well, I was VERY pregnant with my 4th child, and ordered to "bed rest" by my OBGYN. I was very close to losing my baby, and having a hard time, which I won't go into. But I had to have as much bed rest as possible, which meant I could not walk far to church.

One half block away was a Christian Church, and we started attending there. When we joined there, though, the Baptist church would NOT send our membership there because it was a "different denomination"! They kept it...sort of kidnapped our membership! And filed us away somewhere in an "inactive membership" drawer or file or something.

It to us seemed they preached the same thing as the Baptist church, except they took communion every Sunday, which didn't bother me at all. I had also noticed that often, the Pastor or a deacon would call, sometimes at 9:00 at night, and say, "A young couple just now received Christ as their Savior, and they want to be baptised. Can you come now for their baptism service?" And, us thinking, Boy! They're anxious to jump right in, or something! But, we'd jump into some clothes and head to the church for the baptising.

The fact is, MenJesus, we attended there almost 2 years before we found out that they teach you MUST be baptised to be all the way saved! That you are not completely saved, until you are baptised. So we left, and joined a non-denominational church.

Well, lo and behold...they would not send our membership on either! So now, we were MEMBERS in three different churches! Although, at two, we were inactive members! We were actively involved in a church all the time, but were labeled inactive! And all three churches kept us on the membership roll!

We ended up in later years living in two more different counties, and went to church near us. So finally, we had membership in FIVE DIFFERENT CHURCHES! Not a one of them would send our membership on to where we were going, and some wanted us to be baptised AGAIN, as per THEIR church guidelines! By then, we were thinking...Something is either wrong with this type of membership kidnapping, or something is wrong with us!

After much Bible searching, we decided as a family that we belonged to ENOUGH churches, and that we would NEVER, EVER join another church. We would continue to attend as we felt led of the Lord and to be involved as much as they would allow us to, but we WOULD NOT JOIN ANOTHER CHURCH! And we have not.

We have been at our current church for about 5 years now, and considered part of the church family. We are involved in everything that goes on there. I even do the bulletins and have worked with the church directory committee, and church cookbook committee. I prepare food for every Covered Dish Dinner, and one other lady and I were overseers for our "Mother/Daughter Tea" last year for Mother's Day, and I could go on and on telling what all we do besides attend and give our money.

But, we had talked to the Pastor and told him, we don't join churches any more, and why. So, we are as accepted as any member there.

But again, I say that our Pastor will Baptise anyone, and you don't become a member once you are baptised. To me, that is a good thing, to keep membership SEPERATE from a person's baptising.

I agree you should not just join ANY church till you KNOW what they teach! Sometimes you may have to attend for two years to know what they teach! We did.

We as a family have learned that God does indeed lead you to where He wants you to be. But, we've also learned that to "be a part of that certain church family", you do not have to be on a membership roll!

I suggest keep calling around, or seeking out Pastors and talk to other people (neighbors, friends, relatives, etc.) and ask them to have their Pastor call you. Keep searching till you find one that will baptise you WITHOUT putting you on the church membership roll! You are using wisdom by not just joining up with any church!

I'm sure going to pray for you, menJesus, because I remember how all this really got to us for awhile, too!

Ashley274
Apr 1st 2008, 05:28 AM
Hi I am sorry you are in such pain and turmoil over this issue. I don't know a lot of things but I do know that you are not saved by water baptism you are already saved when you believe in Christ Jesus..faith by grace saves you. You could die right now and you would see God. That being said it is good to get the water baptism ..maybe attend chuch for a few months to see if you DO agree with the church and then get baptized. I will :pray:for you

menJesus
Apr 1st 2008, 08:38 AM
Couple of thoughts:

I was in need of a quick baptism once I was saved. It felt right. But all churches will have some rule that you need to attend some sort of class, at least an hour before a pastor will baptize you. I had to wait a month or so for the same reason you are. But I liked the church and the people there. I attended the class with two others. After class the pastor said he would schedule a baptism at the next church service or whenever.

I said, how about right now? We were in the church and the baptismal font was sitting right there. Two of us were baptized right then and there. The pastor was all bubbly, called it an Acts 8 moment. For him it was, but I had waited. Nevertheless it felt great!

You should be able to find a pastor will come to your house, discuss it so that he is comfortable, and baptize you right then and there. Mine would have I'm sure.

But don't let the fact a church has rules for baptism be the only determining factor.

Second thought:

The Bible does not say you have to be baptized by a pastor of a church. You can be baptized by any Christian. Got a good friend, a Christian, with a pool?

If we lived in the same city, I'd baptize you tonight! But - I also know you from these forums and I believe you are a solid Christian believer. I wouldn't baptize just anybody off the street until I was comfortable that they really understood exactly what they were doing first.

Baptism is serious business. It's like signing a legal contract that binds you to have Christ live in you in exchange for accepting His punishment on the Cross. (Being saved is like deciding to sign the contract).

Thank you for sharing your story. I bet it was great! I can only imagine what it will feel like... ;)

And thank you for being willing to baptize me. It IS such a serious thing - this is exactly why I want to do it.

Something is still niggling at me, though: I wonder if Jesus and/or the disciples ever refused to baptize anybody? It seems like classes and memberships weren`t needed back in the day - only belief... ;)

I will keep looking, because I still need a home church... and a church home... :)

menJesus
Apr 1st 2008, 09:09 AM
Diggindeeper, what a story! That is downright scary! I sensed this kind of possessiveness ( strange word, but strange situation, too) from these churches, and I shied away from it - I couldn`t help it. I think that what I am so afraid of, is signing membership to a church that has a doctrine (?) I can`t accept, and to me, that is the same as agreeing, in print, to worshipping a different God than the One in the Bible, and I`ll tell you the truth, that thought terrifies me...

God knows I have searched my heart, and there is no rebelliousness in me over this, at all. I know that no one church will have it exactly right, as I believe, and that presents a whole new set of challenges... finding a church that is as close to "right" as I can get...

I would love to find a church such as yours. I was a long-time member of a similar one once, before I became ill, although I never signed a membership, and it was simply lovely... :)

I am definitely going to keep looking... I have been praying to find a church for four months, now, so God knows... He will put me somewhere... eventually... :)

menJesus
Apr 1st 2008, 09:13 AM
Hi I am sorry you are in such pain and turmoil over this issue. I don't know a lot of things but I do know that you are not saved by water baptism you are already saved when you believe in Christ Jesus..faith by grace saves you. You could die right now and you would see God. That being said it is good to get the water baptism ..maybe attend chuch for a few months to see if you DO agree with the church and then get baptized. I will :pray:for you

Thank you for praying for me. I know that I am saved without the baptism - thank God! I would sure be in a mess otherwise...

You keep praying, and I will keep looking. I have faith... but I do need patience... ;)

Teke
Apr 1st 2008, 12:10 PM
Well, now, I had never considered the fact that the church feels responsible for me once I am baptized... that must be part of why they are reluctant to baptize a stranger/non-member... I can accept that a lot easier than I can accept their rule of me commiting myself and my tithes to the church, whether I am willing or not... I would agree to tithe sooner than signing the church register...

I don't know all about the churches you checked out and what they were requiring of you. But I do know the Baptist churches accept you when baptized without any special requirements, such as tithing. And in their statement they have what is known as "individual soul liberty", which is the teaching that every individual has liberty over their own soul whether saved or unsaved.

In my beginnings the Baptist is where I began my search and was baptized. Individual soul liberty also allows one to believe differently, as Baptist don't persecute or protest other faiths.

So some 20 yrs later when I left and became Orthodox there were no ill feelings from either myself or the church. God led me to both by HIStory and the Spirit's leading in my heart.

PrayerInMemphis
Apr 1st 2008, 08:11 PM
We as a family have learned that God does indeed lead you to where He wants you to be. But, we've also learned that to "be a part of that certain church family", you do not have to be on a membership roll!


Amen!

I've attended my church for 2+ years and I haven't joined. Quite simply, the Lord hasn't led me to.

menJesus
Apr 1st 2008, 10:08 PM
Oh dear - the Baptist churches are the denomination I was talking about - one was a 1st Baptist, and one was a 2nd Baptist.

9Marksfan
Apr 2nd 2008, 12:03 AM
Hi menJesus

I'm so sorry you're in such turmoil over this! :cry:

While I abhor any kind of attitiude that says that someone must sign up to a tithing programme before they can join a church, I think that baptism and church membership ARE connected. Here's why:-

"For by one Spirit we were all baptised into one body..." 1 Cor 12:13a NKJV

ProjectPeter
Apr 2nd 2008, 12:07 AM
Oh dear - the Baptist churches are the denomination I was talking about - one was a 1st Baptist, and one was a 2nd Baptist.
Yeah well... times are a changin!

amazzin
Apr 2nd 2008, 12:20 AM
okay I think this thread has gone far enough. You have two options here.

1) Become a member and get baptised in the church by the Pastor
2) Have someone else baptise you in a tub or river or lake.

Enough said. This is becoming a bash the pastor and bash the church by all who don't understand the liabilities or the by-laws of different churches.

ProjectPeter
Apr 2nd 2008, 12:33 AM
Guys... we need to slow down here a bit. Amazzin posted earlier with a solid truth. Different denominations and churches have different rules established by their leadership. It is their rules and they are certainly free to abide by those rules and if they are members there... it would be a sin if they didn't. While we could argue those rules... it would be pointless because the simple fact of the matter is that it ain';t going to change their rules. I'll baptise anyone that needs it... As Amazzin said too... find a born again believer and ask them to baptize you... it doesn't have to be a ceremony. But we want to be careful in how we are speaking about the church simply because we aren't fond of one of their rules. We don't have to understand the rule... if we can't live by that rule then by all means... please don't join that Church. :)

So here's the thing... She is going to get baptized. So no need to draw this out any further and wind up making the body of Christ look bad.