Matthew Henry is one of my heroes. He lived a faithful life as a pastor who wanted nothing more than for his people to be overjoyed by what they had in Christ and he worked tirelessly to shepherd them in faithfulness. Henry is most well known for his commentary on the whole bible. If you haven’t read any of it, I highly encourage you to do so. You can access the whole thing for free online here or you can buy the huge, one-volume print of it here.
But, this post is not about Matthew Henry, but something his father, Philip Henry, did. Philip was also a faithful father and pastor. In Matthew Henry’s biography, I came across a baptismal covenant his father (Philip) wrote for his church members upon their baptism. The following is what he would have the baptized say before they went into the water:
I take God the Father to be my chief end and highest good.
I take God the Son to be my Prince and Savior.
I take God the Holy Spirit to be my sanctifier, teacher, guide, and comforter.
I take the Word of God to be my rule in all my actions and the people of God to be my people under all conditions.
I do hereby dedicate and devote to the Lord all I am, all I have, and all I can do.
And this I do deliberately, freely, and forever.
As I explain baptism to our students and as I prepare them for the waters, I make sure we read and talk through these words and it has brought great blessing to me and the students. May all our baptisms be given with such intent and understanding. May our Christian lives be guided by such resolve.