And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. 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? 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. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way _rejoicing. ( Acts 8:34-39)
It is often said that, “whatever is worth doing at all, is worth doing well.” Hear me! Baptism is worth doing and it must be done well. Anyway, I cannot actually say about how the mercy of God would handle the issue of water baptism that is not done well or done ignorantly. The question is, how should a minister of God conduct water baptism and what should be the doctrine of his recitation? You see, right inside the Christ Apostolic Church order of service, under the order of service for water baptism, you’ll find what a minister of God ought to recite. There it reads thus…. “The Pastor shall ask the person to be baptised the following questions….. (Q) Your name……(A) My name is…….(Q) Do you believe in Jesus Christ?……(A) _I believe in Jesus Christ whole heartedly that He is the Son of God and He is my Saviour. And on this answers by the fellow who is to be baptised, the Pastor shall say ” …..On this declaration of your faith, I baptise you in the name of the Father, and the Son; and of the Holy Ghost.” Now, I have come to realise that this doctrine of water baptism is from the Holy Scripture and that makes it more valid in my sight. See how the Scripture gave us its own example of the doctrine of water baptism according to Acts 8:36-37 “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? 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.” You see, out of all the identities of Jesus Christ, His identity as the Son of God is so preeminent to the extent that it must be the core of the belief of whoever is willing to be baptised. The revelation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God should precede the baptism of anyone. Hear me beloved! It is expedient for a minister of God or a leader of a folk to always check out the belief of the people he is leading whether they have obtained the correct revelation of who Jesus Christ is or not. You see, as for Jesus, He didn’t assume that His followers would have known who He is, He still went ahead to confirm the core of their belief in Matthew 16:13-17 “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” Thank God that Jesus didn’t call Himself the Son of God when He was asking them the question, we would have thought that He manipulated their answer. See how He referred to Himself in Matthew 16:13 when He says, “Whom do men say that I the SON OF MAN am?” You see, one of the ways to know that God has brought anyone to the true knowledge of Jesus Christ is when the fellow has wholeheartedly believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of the living God. You see, Jesus is always excited whenever anyone is fully persuaded of this wonder of His identity. At this stage of belief Jesus excitedly said to Peter, “…..Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” You see, the revelation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God is one major sign that God has fully persuaded someone to come into the faith of Jesus Christ. You see, as a preacher also, you must constantly preach Jesus as the ‘Son of God,’ so that God can assists the hearer to catch up with the revelation. Hear me! It takes a divine revelation for anyone to accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God and this is the major belief that the devil does not want anyone to conceive. He prefers you to see Jesus as any other thing than seeing Him as the Son of God. Devil also has been fully persuaded that the whole portion of the benefits for every believer in Christ can only be released to them when they have been assisted by God to whole heartedly believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Now, let me ask you, what was your declaration when you were baptised into Christ? You see, it is not the dipping of your body into water that really matters; what really matters is what you wholeheartedly believe in before you are baptised and that should be Jesus Christ is the Son of God. This is what we derived from the acts of one of the outstanding evangelists in Acts 8:36-37 “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? 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.” This also implies that baptism is forbidden for anyone who has not been fully persuaded of this divine revelation that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Hear me! This is where those who are doing infant baptism are missing it. There must be a declaration of belief before anyone is baptised. May God assists those who are yet to know the importance of seeing Jesus as the Son of God in Jesus’ name.
Prayer: I receive the grace and enlightenment of God to see Jesus Christ as the Son of God, in Jesus’ name.