Should You Be Baptized Twice?

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I was baptized many years ago when I was twelve years old. Do I need to perform this ceremony twice, but this time as an adult?

It is good that you are reflecting on being baptized just before you became a teenager. It may be that God is pricking your conscience and wants you to renew your relationship with him. It is unfortunate that, unlike you, most people in this world do not want to have a real relationship with their heavenly Father and therefore never reflect on their baptism.

There are only two possible outcomes that could have taken place when you were initially baptized. The first is God gave you the gift of his Holy Spirit after you rose out of the baptismal waters. The second is you did not receive God's Spirit and all you got for your troubles was getting wet.

The only justification for being baptized yet again is if you believe you did not receive God's spirit when you were young. If you did receive the Holy Spirit some fifteen years ago, then performing the ceremony again seems a bit redundant and unnecessary.

Baptism of the Ethiopian Eunuch
Baptism of the Ethiopian Eunuch
Gerrit Claesz Bleker, 1630 - 35

The decision to commit your life to God and become a Christian is the most important one a person will ever make. It is far more important than deciding whom to marry. While mates can come and go (sadly, due to the hardness of human nature) God will love, guide and stay with you no matter what unless you consciously and fully reject him and his ways.

Tough questions

Below are some questions to ask yourself about the first time you were baptized. If you are willing to honestly answer the below questions to yourself, then your ultimate decision will become much clearly to you.

1) Before being baptized, did you feel you understood what sin was, that you sinned against God, and went against his righteous commandments?

2) Did you consciously repent of disobeying God and living your life as YOU saw fit rather than according to his will?

3) Were you aware, at the time of being baptized, that becoming a Christian was a lifelong commitment that would require constant work to CHANGE, until the day you died, how you lived and thought so that it conformed to what God wanted?

4) Did you fully accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior?

5) Was the decision to be baptized, even in part, due to pressure from others (parents, church, friends, etc.) or to be accepted by any one or group of people?

6) Do you feel your emotions at the time may have swept you along to make your decision?

7) When everything was said and done, did you feel that the right thing to do, the thing your whole life seemed to prepare you for, was being baptized and becoming a Christian?

It's your choice

The decision whether to be baptized again or not is entirely yours. You should resist any pressure someone may try to place on you to decide one way or another. No one should make this pivotal decision "for" you. While others may help you decide by providing support, or pointing out things that need to be considered, it all comes down to you and God. After all, we are talking about a decision that will affect your life forever.

Pray to God and talk to him about the possibility of being baptized twice. Ask him to confirm (if you need it) whether you have his spirit in you or not. Our loving Father knows when it is best to call a person to repent, change their ways, and follow him. He alone knows when the time is right to give someone his Spirit.

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