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Baptism of the dead?

In the practice of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a living person, acting as proxy, is baptized by immersion on behalf of a deceased person of the same gender. The baptism ritual is as follows: after calling the living proxy by name, the person performing the baptism says, “Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you for and in behalf of [full name of deceased person], who is dead, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.” The proxy is then immersed briefly in the water. Baptism for the dead is a distinctive ordinance of the church and is based on the belief that baptism is a required ordinance for entry into the Kingdom of God.

Are Mormon's the only ones who do this? How do you view this belief?


Asked by IhartU at 7:03 PM on Dec. 31, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

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This question is closed.
Answers (16)
  • I don't find it any weirder than the Masses for the dead that the Catholics have. Neither practice is hurting me, and if it helps them feel better about those who have passed, than so be it. :)

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:21 AM on Jan. 1, 2010

  • the way i view it is that i dont think it makes sense since baptism is meant for people who accept God in their lives and accept Jesus as savior. Dead people cant do that.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:10 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • With Christianity, the New Apostolic Church practices proxy baptism. If I remember correctly, there are some off-shoots of Mormonism that practice this as well. It is practiced by other religions outside of Christianity, but I can't bring them to mind right now.

    Answer by Lexylex at 7:22 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • That should read, "within"

    Answer by Lexylex at 7:23 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • But how can it work if the dead person is not the one WANTING and WILLING in their hearts to accept what baptism means. I don't get how standing in for a dead person helps them get to heaven.

    Answer by IhartU at 7:26 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • When I was a member of the church I thought nothing of it. It was something we did to benefit and aid those who had passed on without the full knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

    As far as I have known it was the only church who did this but apparently not.

    Nowadays, I can see why people get pissy about it.

    Answer by Amaranth361 at 7:28 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • It's not at all biblical. It makes no sense and does no good. All that happens is that the proxy person gets wet. Baptism is a conscious choice. Baptising babies or dead people is just useless.


    Answer by AngelDawn7 at 7:30 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • IhartU~it doesnt get them into heaven per se, it gives them the chance to accept the baptism and the gospel and go from there to reap the benefits the gospel(in this case I mean the church)has to offer.

    So you can be baptized for someone but if they, on the other side, dont accept it then so be it but if they do want the blessings that the gospel brings then they are on their way cuz they've been baptized.

    Its really hard to explain LOL.

    *ok taking off my ex-missionary/ex mormon hat*

    Answer by Amaranth361 at 7:32 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • BUT this is where it comes to a fork in the road per say: There are some believers who say you go to the afterlife as soon as you die and there are others who say you are just sleeping until judgement day. Does that 'proxy' baptism hang in the air until they rise from the dead and then decide if they want to use that card or not? It kind of seems unfair. I mean, if you can't make that decision while alive, then why do you get another chance after death?


    Answer by IhartU at 7:37 PM on Dec. 31, 2009

  • Well, its more about those who have never heard of the gospel of Jesus Christ...this is their chance and its their chance(if they have heard of it)to accept the full and complete gospel(which is what the church teaches it has).

    Gosh this could get long LOL.

    The church teaches that when you die you end up in two spots basically...spirit paradise or prison. In prison you have the chance to learn and accept the gospel from missionaries and getting your work(baptism and temple ordinances)done via proxy. If you accept cool beans...if not then you are judged based on whatever all you did in life and whatnot. If you dont accept the gospel then you wont get to as high a kingdom as you could. You dont go to "hell" but you dont get to the highest kingdom where God and Jesus lives.

    *of course, what do I know Im an ex member now and we are bitter dont ya know* LOL

    Answer by Amaranth361 at 7:44 PM on Dec. 31, 2009