Friday, November 27, 2020

Why I believe in baptizing babies (condensed version)

I grew up with the traditional Baptist view, typically referred to as "believers baptism". It is theologically known as credobaptism, or baptism with a profession of faith.

Over the years, as I shifted towards Presbyterianism, which holds to infant baptism or paedobaptism for children of believers (as well as credo-baptism for new professing believers), I sought to really understand where I stood and began studying the Scriptures and some teachers on both positions.

The doctrine of baptism is not the only thing that differentiates the 2 denominations, but it is a significant doctrinal element that deserves due consideration and I confess that I have gone back and forth over the years. That being said, I have landed on the side of infant baptism for the following reasons:

  1. The Old Covenant (OC) was replaced by the New Covenant (NC) under Christ
  2. Under the OC, the requirement for a visible sign and seal of membership in the physical and spiritual Kingdom was circumcision that was administered to infants and adults
  3. This visible sign and seal in the NC is baptism
  4. The OC requirement that a Kingdom membership sign and seal be given to infants was never rescinded
  5. Jesus' kind disposition towards children is clearly demonstrated in Scripture
  6. Therefore, the NC visible sign and seal should be given to infants
Now, I know that many Baptists argue that there is no specific instance of an infant being baptized recorded in the New Testament, but that is really an argument from silence. With that in mind, I don't see any good reason not to hold to the continuation of giving the sign and seal of Kingdom membership to the children of believers. I think the burden of proof lies with my credo-Baptist brethren.

Finally, just to be clear, this doctrine is inclusive of adult confessional baptism.

If you are working through this doctrine or just trying to understand the different positions, I hope this is helpful.

(NOTE: This post only relates to the 2 views mentioned here, not other denominational views.)

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