Jesus instructed his followers: Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Matthew 28:19 (NLT) We baptize people today because Jesus told us that after a person has become His follower (or disciple), they’re supposed to be baptized. The purpose of baptism is to show people in both the church and the community that they’ve become a follower of Jesus. Baptism will not cause God to forgive them—or help them get to heaven. The Bible does not teach this and we’re shown by example as well. When Jesus was hanging on the cross, the thief hanging beside Him asked, “Remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” There was no opportunity for the thief to be baptized but Jesus told the thief that He would see him in heaven that very day (Luke 23:42, 43).