Baptism is a personal covenant between you and God. In the LDS Church it is the third principle and ordinance of the gospel (see the 4th Article of Faith
) which means it's how we show faith in Christ and repent of our sins. We also believe in being baptized to show obedience, to take upon us the name of Christ, to become members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to receive the Holy Ghost, and enter in the kingdom of God.
Baptized to Cleanse Sin:
Sin is when we willfully disobey God's commandments and so to be cleansed of our sins we must be baptized. In the Bible Peter said, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:38
The Apostle Paul also preached baptism to cleanse sins, "And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord" (Acts 22:16
Baptized to Show Obedience:
Obedience is to willfully keep God's commands and one of his commandments is to be baptized. Christ, who had no sins, chose to be baptized to obey the father. In The Book of Mormon
the prophet Nephi explained, "And now, I would ask of you, my beloved brethren, wherein the Lamb of God did fulfil all righteousness in being baptized by water? Know ye not that he was holy? But notwithstanding he being holy, he showeth unto the children of men that, according to the flesh he humbleth himself before the Father, and witnesseth unto the Father that he would be obedient unto him in keeping his commandments" (2 Nephi 31:6-7
Baptized to Take Upon Us the Name of Christ:
When we are baptized we covenant with God to take upon us the name of Christ. The prophet Nephi saw a vision of Christ being baptized by John the Baptist. He then taught that when we are baptized we are "witnessing unto the Father that ye are willing to take upon you the name of Christ" (2 Nephi 31:13
.) Taking the name of Christ upon us means we are willing to serve him and keep his commandments.
Baptized to Become Members of Christ's Church:
Those who are baptized become members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are brought into the fellowship of the LDS Church. "All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized... [that] have truly repented of all their sins... shall be received by baptism into his church" (D&C 20:37
Baptized to Receive Gift of the Holy Ghost:
The Gift of the Holy Ghost
is given after a person is baptized. When that person is worthy (obedient and free of sin) they can have the Holy Ghost with them always.
Baptized to Enter Kingdom of God:
We cannot enter the Kingdom of God unless we are baptized. It's often referred to as being "saved" and we cannot be saved unless we obey God's command and choose to be baptized. In the Bible Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God" (John 3:5
When Christ appeared to the Nephites in The Book of Mormon
he taught them, "Whoso believeth in me, and is baptized... shall inherit the kingdom of God. And whoso believeth not in me, and is not baptized, shall be damned" (3 Nephi 11:33-34
Who Should Be Baptized?: