It is a sacrament established by Jesus Christ, whereby a person in the bath of baptismal water cleanses or absolves himself from the sins of divine grace, first from the east, as well as all those committed personally, and spiritually regenerates to a new life in Christ, is transformed into Christ, and becomes a member of the people of God or the Church.
It imprints the baptized person with an indelible mark or character and, therefore, once validly received, is not repeated, and membership in Christ and the Church can no longer be annulled or completely lost, even if the baptist was not later reared in the faith, or fulfilled religious obligations, or explicitly renounced faith.
Water ceremony has long been practiced in the old world as a symbol not only of physical but also of moral purification. Christian baptism originates from the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. In the first centuries of Christianity, it was always preceded by the introduction of faith. In early Christianity, it was performed on mature believers, who had previously had to apply as candidates for the baptismal rite and to go through the preparatory period by practicing fasting and prayer. Adults who intended to receive it had a special status.
This status lasted about two years, but sometimes the deadline was reduced or increased. If they were worthy of it, or admission to the Christian community, there would be a rite during which the initiate would, without clothing, descend into the water, washing away sins and symbolizing the death of his former self. The priest would then invite the Spirit to descend on the reborn, who wears a white robe and receives honey mixed with milk – food for the newborn. It was performed in streams and rivers, and from Constantine the Great in the special water pools that were at the church.
Who is suitable?
Any person who has not done this before can be baptized at any age. In the beginnings of Christianity, this was distributed mainly to adults, who, encouraged by the preaching of the gospel, wished themselves to be baptized. At a very early age, however, at the request of the parents, children began to be baptized, and over time, the baptism of children in the Catholic Church became a regular and general practice.
The code of canon law specifies what is required for both valid and permissible ceremonies, whether adults or children.
If it is performed on adults, both adults, 18 years of age and minors, below that age, who have come out of childhood, ie. when they have reached the age of seven and have come to use reason, they need to manifest their will to receive the holy sacrament. This manifestation of the will can be made explicit, by a statement before a priest or before a believer, and it can be implicit if it can be inferred from various unambiguous signs that such a will exists.
The will or desire to receive it is essential, and the validity depends on it. Baptism to an adult without his or her knowledge or against his or her will and force would be invalid. In addition, adults should be sufficiently educated in religious truths and Christian obligations and should be tried during the preparatory period for baptism in the conduct of the Christian life. If this teaching and introduction to the practical Christian life were absent, it would not be permissible but valid.
As regards the baptism of children, parents should make sure that their children are baptized in the first weeks after birth. Accordingly, they should contact their pastor as soon as possible after the birth of the child, or even before birth, and ask and agree on the baptism of the child and do what is necessary in connection with the act, and parental instruction on the meaning is certainly included baptisms and the obligations associated therewith.
Baptism of a child would be valid if the parents did not ask for it, but in order for it to be divided, it is necessary that his or her parents, or at least one of them, or whoever legally replaces the parents, consent to it. It is also required to have reasonable hopes that the child will be raised in that faith.
The Impact of Baptism on the Christian Experience
The theoretical discussion of it is of little value unless the practical impact of baptism on the life of the believer is also considered. It alone does not guarantee a new life. There is no sacramental power in the water of baptism as such. However, it symbolically represents purification, washing away from sin, and moral impurity.
When the Holy Spirit enlightens him, man becomes aware of his lost condition. By repentance and confession man can be freed from the burden of sin and guilt, he can feel that God has accepted him unconditionally, he can get the freedom to live a new life through the Holy Spirit. That new life is the result of a new birth or renewal. The apostle Paul compares the experience of new birth or renewal with the Holy Spirit to the death and funeral of an old life and a resurrection to a new life. This change is symbolically represented by that.
Why swear are being read during the ceremony?
The one who is baptized is perfected by an oath to drive the devil away from him, who, from the time of Adam’s sin, gained access to men and a certain authority over them, as over his captives or servants. The apostle Paul says that all people who are beyond grace walk in the spirit of this world, in the prince who rules in the air, in the spirit that now resides in the sons of opposition.
The institution of the godfather
The godfather, who gives the name to the child, is the witness of ceremony and the spiritual parent of the child being baptized. He must be of the same faith, baptized and of legal age. If he is married, he must be married in church. Parents cannot be godparents to their children, nor can monks. He should not be selected among blood relatives.
As you can see, Baptism has a long and significant history in Jewish Culture. In case you want to own some gifts regarding this ritual or anything else related to Jewish culture and history, make sure you check this website. It is great to get some of the stuff for someone who is getting baptized.
On the basis of all that we have stated, the registration in the register of baptized persons entails the issuing of an authentic document, baptismal certificate or corresponding confirmation that one is indeed baptized, and on this basis, it is possible to exercise the rights that baptized and Church members have.