Children are a gift from God, and we are very excited that you are investigating child dedication.
Child dedication is a commitment you make before God, your church, and your family. The dedication service provides you, the parents, an opportunity to express your desire to lead and spiritually nurture your child in co-operation with the Holy Spirit, so your child will develop a desire to love God and love others.
What is the biblical purpose and history of a child dedication?
The scriptural root of a child dedication is found in 1 Samuel 1:27–28, where a godly woman named Hannah prayed year after year for God to give her a child. He answered her prayer and she gave birth to a son, whom she named Samuel. When Samuel was born, Hannah prayed these words:
“For this boy I prayed, and the Lord has given me my petition which I asked of Him. So I have also dedicated him to the Lord; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the Lord.”
In Luke chapter 2 of the New Testament, following the birth of Jesus, Mary and Joseph took the infant Jesus to the temple and dedicated Him.
In both Scripture passages, the parents entrusted their child completely to God.
The writings of Moses found in Deuteronomy 6:5–9 describe God’s plan for how a parent should raise up a child:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.”
One key step in marking your desire to nurture your child in the ways of God is to dedicate him or her to God, through a child dedication ceremony.