“Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord; and the fruit of the womb is his reward.” Psalm 127:3
We, as Christians, have a tremendous responsibility given to us when the Lord blesses us with a child. By doing so, He entrusts us with the responsibility of raising that child in the way of the Lord and establishing early in his life, a foundation built upon Jesus Christ. It is this tremendous responsibility that causes us to think of baby dedications as “family dedications.” We feel that the whole family needs to be lifted up to the Lord so that each member will be able to keep his or her responsibilities.
But first, what exactly is involved in “dedicating” your child to the Lord? As mentioned, children are a heritage from the Lord. He gives them to us to bless us, and because of this, we must be willing to give them back to Him. We too must be willing to totally submit our children to the will of our Father.
A perfect example of “dedicating” a child to the Lord is given to us in I Samuel 1:11, 26-68. Hannah, being barren (or without child) for many years, was weeping before the Lord because of her barrenness. As she was weeping, she made a vow to God. “And she vowed a vow, and said, “O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, THEN I WILL GIVE HIM UNTO THE LORD ALL THE DAYS OF HIS LIFE...” (I SAMUEL 1:11)
God honored Hannah’s request and gave her a son named Samuel. Hannah then, in keeping her vow, dedicated (or set apart) Samuel unto the Lord.
We see here a beautiful example of what our attitudes should be towards our children and their relationship to God. We are to do the most we can to “set apart” our children to God until the day that they can make their own choice. By dedicating your children to the Lord, you are making a vow to raise them in His ways. The following is a list (though not exhaustive); of some of the things parents do as part of keeping their vows.
1. KNOW GOD’S GIFT OF LOVE
The greatest importance is to know the gift of God’s love in Jesus Christ
personally as parents. In Ephesians 2:6-9 the Bible says “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Jesus Christ: that in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace and his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.”
2. BE A LIVING EXAMPLE OF CHRIST TO YOUR CHILDREN
It does not do your child any good to instruct him in the way of the Lord if you yourself do not walk what you talk. Therefore, it is good for you to always be examining yourself and your witness to your children. In Proverbs 20:7 the Bible says “The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.” The main reason for the blessed state of this man’s children is that they have someone to look up to and to use as an example to model their own behavior. We as parents are encouraged to strive to be that example to our children even as Christ is our example.
3. INSTRUCT YOUR CHILD IN THE WAY OF THE LORD
We are taught in Ephesians 6:4 to “And ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them (your children) up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” And Proverbs 22:6 adds, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” If we, while our children are young, instruct them in His ways, our children will grow in the ways of God for a lifetime.
4. PRAY CONSTANTLY FOR YOUR CHILD
A parent’s responsibility to pray for their child does not end at their dedication, but continues throughout the rest of their life.
We see an example of this in Job 1:5... “And it was so when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, it may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.”
And in James 5:16...“Confess your faults one to another, and prayer one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” The prayer of Christ centered parents powerfully covers their children in prayer that will produce effective change for a lifetime.
The dedication of your family is a serious matter. It is hoped that this page has helped you recognize the extent of this commitment that you will be making. Here are some frequently asked questions that may help you with your decision.
How do I sign up for a Baby Dedication?
You may sign up for Baby Dedication one of two ways: By filling out our online registration form below or requesting a printed registration form at 411 Central. After registering you will be contacted via mail/email with confirmation and other information.
When can I have a Baby Dedication?
We have one Baby Dedication service a year. This service is typically held in the fall of the year. We will have Baby Dedication in our morning worship services. You simply have to choose which service that you wish to participate in.
When do I need to arrive the Sunday of?
You will need to arrive 15 minutes prior to the start of the service that you will be participating in. Once you arrive please go to 411 Central to be directed as to where you can register. This is necessary for us to know who is present for the Dedication service.
What can I expect to happen as part of the service?
Sunday morning worship will be carried out as normal. The pastor at a certain point in his message will direct you where to go to prepare to be called onstage. All babies and parent/guardian(s) will be called onstage and names called out. The pastor then will carry on with the Dedication part of the service.
Who is allowed onstage during the service?
We ask that you limit to only 2-3 people with your child during the time that they are onstage. This is due to the size of the stage, video and camera shots.
Who can attend Baby Dedication Service?
We encourage you to invite all of your friends and family to come and share in this wonderful occasion with you. Temple will gladly send personal letter/emails to individuals that you choose to invite. Simply fill out that portion on the registration form online.
If you have any questions concerning anything that has been said, or not covered here, please email us for more information.
If you have questions, please contact Mendy Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office at 256.737.0112.