I am writing this because I was contacted by a member of my old church(Christ Ev. Lutheran Church-WELS) and was told that since my child was not baptized as an infant that if he died before he made the choice to be baptized that we wouldn't be reassured that he would go to Heaven.
As a parent this is heartbreaking that people would think that way. Deep down I think this was God's way of having me dig into his word more, research, and educate not only myself but Matt, who grew up ELCA. Although it hurt me at first and I'm glad I went through this, I have learned a lot more in the last week than what I remember of the 8 years of a private school setting. I'm not saying it wasn't a good school, I just saying I personally didn't get a lot out of it.
I have so many friends that feel the need to baptize their child as an infant because that's what they were taught, but when asking them why they choose to do so they weren't really sure why they were doing it. I hope this benefits them as well!
Baptism should be the choice of the person not of the parents, as it is the person who is being baptized repenting, fully assured that they have already been saved and a believer of the gospel.
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 2:38-39 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
Acts 8:12 But when they believed, Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
Complete immersion is the understanding we have the word “baptize” and is called a “burial” by Paul in Romans 6:3-4 Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. and we know that when a dead person is buried, they do not have just a few handfuls of dirt sprinkled on them, but are completely covered/ baptism symbolizes death, burial, and resurrection - our death, burial, and resurrection with Christ. As in death, one stops breathing and eyes are shut, so in baptism one stops breathing, and the eyes are shut. Then they are “Buried” in the water, and lifted up again in a symbol of resurrection to new life, to open their eyes and breathe again! Being “buried” backwards is a beautiful symbol of submission, as to allow someone to lay you on your back in water is really to put your life in their hands more so than to go forward/(you go forward after you rise again!) This living illustration can be applied daily as we remember our baptism-we know we are dead to sin and live to the Lord Jesus. Jesus is living His life in us. – http://www.gracelifewc.com/uploads/2/6/7/3/26731815/water_baptism_explained.pdf
As far as “you need to be baptized to be saved”
Mark 16:15-16 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
Romans 5:1-2 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have a peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gain access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
Ephesians 2:8-9 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.
All in all I feel like this was all part of God's plan for strengthening me as a person and Christian. I still 100% support the decision Matt and I made as parents and could not be happier at the church we are at.