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Question

 

Gramps,

I cannot find anywhere in the scriptures nor the handbook that I cannot be re-baptized again. I know the church used to for those who wanted to recommit themselves to the Savior. I also know that Sacrament is for renewing covenants and renewing your baptism. But as a child of 8, I did not fully understand the true meaning of baptism like Alma and when Paul found those who were baptized in Ephesus. But I do it for myself and to the Savior. Please list the commandment that says we can’t.

Jon

 

Answer

 

Dear Jon,

While there is no commandment there is policy.

Elder Talmage spoke about this idea in his book, Articles of Faith.  He said:

Repeated Baptisms of the Same Person are not sanctioned in the Church. It is easy to fall into the error of believing that baptism offers a ready means of gaining forgiveness of sins however oft repeated. Such a belief tends rather to excuse than to prevent sin, inasmuch as the hurtful effects seem to be so easily averted. Neither the written law of God, nor the instructions of His living Priesthood, designate baptism as a means of securing forgiveness by those who are already within the fold of Christ. Unto such, forgiveness of all sin, if not unto death, has been promised on confession, and repentance with full purpose of heart; of them a repetition of the baptismal rite has not been required and, were subjects of this class repeatedly baptized, unto them remission of sins would in no wise come, except they repent most sincerely. The frailties of mortality and our proneness to sin lead us continually into error; but if we covenant with the Lord at the waters of baptism, and thereafter seek to observe His law, He is merciful to pardon our little transgressions, through repentance sincere and true; and without such repentance, baptism, however oft repeated, would avail us nothing.”

Elder James E. Talmage, The Articles of Faith, pg 148.

If not re-baptism then what?  You know the answer. Elder Dallin H. Oaks said,

“Baptism is for the remission of sins, and the sacrament is a renewal of the covenants and blessings of baptism.”

Many other leaders have taught the same principle.

Jon, I’m sure the Lord appreciates your desire to recommit yourself through baptism.  But He has told us through His leaders how He desires this to be done.  Please consider a prayerful study of the Sacrament.  You may think you know all about it, but in my experience, there is always more to learn about the Lord’s doctrines if we humble ourselves and seek Him for that understanding.

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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