“Baptism…now saves you” (1 Peter 3:21).
Little babies. They’re cute. You cuddle them. You talk to them and even sing lullabies to them.
Babies grow up fast. That’s what little babies do. They eat and sleep. We have to buy the next size clothes sooner than we imagine. We were all babies once. Now we look like our parents, and even if we don’t want to admit it, we have some of their habits and mannerisms.
Yes, little babies grow. When they are small and helpless, they seem so innocent. But it doesn’t take long to realize that they have the same human failings and weaknesses as their parents. Flawed and sinful humans give birth to flawed and sinful babies. We may not notice it at first, but babies soon show signs of the sinful human nature – temper tantrums, sibling rivalry, jealousy, and the little word “mine.” It’s a fact we learn over time and a fact that Jesus told us when he said, “Flesh gives birth to flesh” (John 3:6). Jesus knows that babies need what all of us need – forgiveness.
God gave us a remarkable gift for all people including babies: Baptism. The Bible tells us, “Baptism…now saves you” (1 Peter 3:21). What a wonderful promise of God. Baptism brings God’s love and forgiveness. That’s one reason why we baptize babies. Another is the command of Jesus. He told his disciples to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19). Babies are simply part of “all nations” just as adults are.
Jesus loves each child – if you can imagine it – more deeply than a mother or father. Remember how Jesus took little children on his knees and caressed them with his love and blessing. That’s why Baptism does for little babies. In Baptism it’s as if Jesus himself picks up our children in his arms and washes them in his loving forgiveness.
That might be a lot to believe but not if you know God. He can do anything including forgiving adults and little children, even babies, in Baptism.
With gentle words of encouragement, Jesus wants us to know that he is interested not only in us but also in our children. He invites us, “Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away” (Acts 22:16). He also reminds us, “The promise is for you and your children” (Acts 2:39). Baptism has such wonderful power and blessing because God promises to work through it. It is his touch of grace and love upon all of us and also upon little babies.
Baptisms at Mighty Fortress Lutheran Church are conducted for members of our church and the community. Contact the church office to schedule a baptism.