Difference Between Dedication and Baptism (With Table)

Christianity is a monotheistic religion, and its followers are known as Christians. This religion is based on the teachings of Jesus Christ, the adherents believe that Jesus Christ is the messiah. The basic teachings of Christianity include; love towards God, love and harmony towards other people, faith in God, etc.,

There are several religions in the world for example; Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc., among all of them Christianity is the most practiced religion in the world. Around 33 percent of the world population is adherent of Christianity. This religion is mostly practiced in the western world.

Being adherent of any religion makes the soul pure, people can follow any religion of their choice, it can be by birth or they can change their religion with few rituals. Every religion has some rituals with which they can make any person adhere to their religion, these rituals are required to be performed under the priests, with the proper holy procedure.

Dedication vs Baptism

The difference between dedication and baptism is that dedication is the rite performed to welcome the infant in the church on the other hand baptism is a ritual performed by sprinkling holy water on an individual to make them adhere to Christianity.

Comparison Table Between Dedication and Baptism   

Parameters of comparisonDedicationBaptism
DefinitionA ceremony in Christianity in which the newborn or infant is dedicated to God and welcome in the church.A ceremony in which is marked by a ritual of use of water to admit an individual to the Christian community.
MethodVerbal exchange Pouring of water
ConditionsThe child should be Christian.The person can be of another religion.
PurposeThe commitment of raising the child in a Godly wayDeclaring faith in Jesus Christ.
Performed onInfantsAny person

What is Dedication?

Dedication is a ceremony in Christianity in which the newborn or infant is dedicated to God and welcome in the church. In which ceremony the parents are also dedicated to God is always the child as a Christian. It is a holy ceremony performed under the priest of the church.

Baby dedication is majorly performed by protestant denominations. Some of the sects in Christianity do not believe in baby dedication instead believe in baptism. It is not necessary to perform the ceremony of dedication on the day of birth of the child, it can be performed whenever the parent finds it suitable.

The ceremony of dedication involves proper Involvement of the family especially the parents of the child. The ceremony involves reading passages from the Bible and verbal exchange in which the Minister asks the parents ( including grandparents if any) if they are ready to raise the child as a Christian according to various criteria.

The exchange of verbal is followed by final prayer and some gift offered to child and parents with a certificate. The congregation may sing a closing hymn as well. This is the basic ritual of a dedication ceremony. The dedication can be a large ceremony or smaller one depending upon the family of the child.    

Parents doing dedication ceremonies accept and agree that they will raise the child in ways directed by God and not their ways. This practice means raising the child in “in a godly way”. The principles can be taught by the grandparents as well. 

What is Baptism?

Baptism is a ceremony which is marked by a ritual of use of water to admit an individual to the Christian community. This means the burial of previous life and accepting Christianity as a new religion. Accepting Christianity means that the person loves, trusts and has hope in Christ. 

In churches, baptism is consistently taught as a ritual that makes the believer surrender his life in faith and obedience to God. It is believed that baptism cleanses the person from sin and changes the state of the person from an alien or demon to the person of God. 

Baptism is practiced in several ways, it can be done through aspersion which means a sprinkling of holy water on the head of the person, another method is a fusion wherein the holy water is poured over the head or by immersion wherein the person stand in the water and holy water is poured on body parts, another form of it is complete submersion in the water.

Submersion is predominantly practiced in orthodox churches. Since the protestant reformation, submersion is seen obligatory among some groups. It is also practiced in Latin church of the catholic church. In several denominations, baptism is practiced on young children. The ceremony is accompanied by giving a new name to the person.

Meaning and belief of baptism remain the same in all sects of Christianity. The ultimate aim of baptism is to make the person free from the sin of his past life and make him a human in the kingdom of God. The baptized person is expected to follow the path of Christ.    

Main Differences Between Dedication and Baptism

  1. Dedication is a ceremony in Christianity in which the newborn or infant is dedicated to God and welcome in the church, on the other hand, baptism is a ceremony in which marked by the ritual of use of water to admit an individual to the Christian community.
  2. Dedication is done on a child who was already born in a Christian family, on the other hand, baptism is done on a person of another religion.  
  3. The dedication ceremony is performed verbally, on the other hand, baptism is performed by pouring water on the candidate.
  4. Dedication is usually performed on infants, on the other hand, baptism is performed on children or any person of any age who has decided to accept Christianity.
  5. Dedication is done to commit that the child will be raised in God’s way, on the other hand, baptism is a declaration of faith in Jesus Christ.

Conclusion 

Dedication and baptism are two different rituals of Christianity. They are performed differently, their meanings are different, their purposes are also different.

Both of them bring the person one step ahead towards God. Both of them are mentioned in the Holy book Bible.

References

https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=RysiXCZ7JJgC&oi=fnd&pg=PP13&dq=what+is+dedication+in+christianity&ots=ULEOu0Po5L&sig=wSBle91qlsKLB7ny6KMERwpLdlM

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