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Does it hurt to get re-baptized?

Submitted: 5/1/2014
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Question: After you have drifted away from God and started living like the old man again, does it hurt to get re-baptized in Jesus name again?

Answer: The issue is not whether or not you should get re-baptized; it is whether or not it is necessary or appropriate. As for being necessary, we would say that it is absolutely necessary for a person who has never been baptized by complete immersion in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins. This is the correct biblical baptism. Many today have been sprinkled as babies or immersed as older person in the titles Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This methods avail nothing. So for anyone who has not been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, we suggest you look to Acts 19:1-6 for an example of people being re-baptized in the proper biblical way.

On the other hand, if a person has been properly baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, we would say that it is absolutely unnecessary to be re-baptized, regardless of how many sins and failures the person has experienced since his baptism. At baptism, the blood of Jesus flows in both directions. Jesus forgives our sins of the past AND our future sins. All we now need to do is confess them (1 John 1:9).

As for whether it is appropriate, again we say it is absolutely inappropriate. The reasons are thus: 1) to be re-baptized would be tantamount to denying of the efficacy of the first baptism, which has the effect of denying the validity of all baptisms; 2) to be re-baptized is tantamount to denying the mercy of God, who like the father of the prodigal son, stands ready and eager to receive and forgive his straying children who have decided to come home; and 3) to be re-baptized is tantamount to treating this important act of faith as though it were a magician’s trick. God saves us as we act in faith, not by waving a magic wand and saying abracadabra (or “in Jesus name”).

The Bible says that Jesus died “once for all.” We only need to be baptized once for all of our sins, both past and future. We therefore stand absolutely opposed to the idea of your being re-baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.