What Is The Difference Between Baptism and Christening?

What is the main difference between baptism and christening? The former is a religious sacrament and the latter is a religious ceremony. Baptism is performed on both adults and infants while Christening is performed on infants only.

Baptism and Christening are the main concepts of Christianity. Some denominations argue that Baptism and Christening are one or the same thing. Knowing the difference between these two Christianity concepts is crucial.

We know it can be confusing to tell the difference between Christening and Baptism. We wrote this comprehensive article for you to help clear the doubts. Take the time to read through and learn more about their similarities.

Difference Between Baptism and Christening (With Table)

Difference Between Baptism and Christening With Table

Basic Terms Baptism Christening
Meaning It is a Christian rite whereby ablution is performed on the one accepting the faith. It is the phenomena of giving a name to the newborn baby along with baptizing him or her inside the church at the same time.
Age Adults and infants Infants
Alternative Names Initiation Naming
Biblical Background Found in the bible whereby Christians are instructed to get baptized. Not found in the bible.
Occasions Entails cleaning of sins to both Christians and non-Christians Entails sprinkling water droplets to infants
Christian Churches Recognized by many Christian denominations. Mostly recognized by Lutheran, Catholic, and Episcopal alone.

What Is Baptism?

Baptism is a significant religious or spiritual rite practiced in various faith traditions, symbolizing purification, initiation, and commitment. Typically involving the use of water, it is a symbolic act that signifies the cleansing of sin and the beginning of a new spiritual journey.

Through baptism, individuals publicly declare their faith and allegiance to a particular religious community. In Christianity, for instance, it marks the acceptance into the Christian faith and often includes the use of water, representing spiritual rebirth and forgiveness.

Baptism holds profound cultural and religious significance, uniting believers and reinforcing their connection to their faith and its teachings. The practice can be done on both infants and adults since Christians believe humans were born with original sin.

What Is Christening?

Christening is a religious ceremony primarily associated with Christianity, focusing on the welcoming and naming of a newborn or young child into the faith community. This sacred event symbolizes the child’s entry into the Christian community.

The ceremony invokes blessings and protection from the divine. During the christening, a clergy member usually administers the sacrament of baptism by sprinkling or immersing the child in water, signifying purification and spiritual rebirth.

Parents and godparents make solemn promises to raise the child in accordance with Christian values and teachings. Christening holds deep sentimental value for families, marking the beginning of the child’s spiritual journey within the faith.

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Main Difference Between Baptism and Christening

  1. Baptism is an initiation while christening is a naming ceremony.
  2. Baptism is highly recognized by many Christian denomination whereas christening is only associated with Lutheran, Catholic, and Episcopal alone.
  3. Baptism involves cleanings of sins for infants and adults while Christening involves invoking blessings and protection to the child.
  4. Baptism is found in the Bible while christening is not found in the bible.
  5. Baptism is performed on infants and adults while christening on infants

Similarities Between Baptism and Christening

  1. Blessings and Prayers are offered
  2. A priest or minister conducts both ceremonies.
  3. Both baptism and christening hold profound symbolism.
  4. Both baptism and christening are associated with Christianity
  5. Both ceremonies often involve the appointment of godparents or sponsors.
  6. Water is a central element for purification, cleansing of sins, and spiritual rebirth.
  7. Both involve giving a child a name to signify identity within the faith community.

Final Thoughts from Expert

The main difference between Baptism and Christening is that the former is more of initiation to Christianity while the latter is the naming of a child by invoking blessings and protection.

The Christian concepts have close similarities and it is the reason behind confusion. A lot believers tend to use them interchangeably without digging into their meanings.

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