Who Should Be Baptized? Acts 8:35-39
After Philip had plainly preached the gospel to the Ethiopian Eunuch, they came to a place having a large body of water, and the Eunuch desired that Philip would baptize him. Upon the Eunuch's request, Philip set before him one essential prerequisite for baptism. "If thou believest with all thine heart thou mayest."
This issue has great importance in our day. There are many brethren who soundly believe the gospel of God's free-grace, who are doing a great harm by the practice of infant baptism. They preach nothing but free grace in their pulpits, but they turn around and "baptize" a baby. Regardless of what the theologians say, in the minds of those who sit in the pews, such a ritual must have some merit before God. If baptism has no merit and no saving efficacy, why would anyone baptize an infant? And, if you do not baptize infants, there is no need to pervert baptism into sprinkling. Infant baptism and sprinkling are merely popish furniture in the house of protestantism, which should have been cast out with indulgences.
Your baptism is very important. By it you either profess the gospel of Christ, or you pervert the gospel of Christ. Only by immersion can you properly confess the gospel in this ordinance. Baptism is the answer of a good conscience toward God. Let us see to it, then, that our baptism is in accordance with the Scriptures.
According to the New Testament, there is but one thing essential to baptism. The person being baptized must have a personal heart faith in Jesus Christ. The essence of baptism is not in the person or church performing it, but in the heart obedience of the person being baptized. You must have a personal faith in the person, work, and power of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. To be baptized without faith in Christ is as dangerous as partaking of the Lord's table without faith. In both cases the unbeliever fails to discern the Lord's body. If the Holy Spirit enables you to trust Christ alone for your complete salvation, you should be baptized, publicly "calling on the name of the Lord."