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Infant Baptism

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Staff Member
Infant Baptism
source: gotquestions.org

There is much confusion about baptism in the various Christian denominations. However, this is not a result of the Bible presenting a confusing message on baptism. The Bible is abundantly clear of what baptism is, who it is for, and what it accomplishes. In the Bible, only believers who had placed their faith in Christ were baptized - as a public testimony of their faith and identification with Him (Acts 2:38; Romans 6:3-4). Water baptism by immersion is a step of obedience after faith in Christ. It is a proclamation of faith in Christ, a statement of submission to Him, and an identification with His death, burial, and resurrection.

With this in view, infant baptism is not a Biblical practice. An infant cannot place his or her faith in Christ. An infant cannot make a conscious decision to obey Christ. An infant cannot understand what water baptism symbolizes. The Bible does not record any infants being baptized. Infant baptism is the origin of the sprinkling and pouring methods of baptism - as it is unwise and unsafe to immerse an infant under water. Even the method of infant baptism fails to agree with the Bible. How does pouring or sprinkling illustrate the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ?

Many Christians who practice infant baptism do so because they understand infant baptism as the new covenant equivalent of circumcision. In this view, just as circumcision joined a Hebrew to the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants, so baptism joined a person to the New Covenant of salvation through Jesus Christ. This view is unbiblical. The New Testament nowhere describes baptism as the New Covenant replacement for Old Covenant circumcision. The New Testament nowhere describes baptism as a sign of the New Covenant. It is faith in Jesus Christ that enables a person to enjoy the blessings of the New Covenant (1 Corinthians 11:25; 2 Corinthians 3:6; Hebrews 9:15).

Baptism does not save a person. It does not matter if you were baptized by immersion, pouring, or sprinkling - if you have not first trusted in Christ for salvation, baptism (no matter the method) is meaningless and useless. Water baptism by immersion is a step of obedience to be done after salvation as a public profession of faith in Christ and identification with Him. Infant baptism does not fit the Biblical definition of baptism or the Biblical method of baptism. If Christian parents wish to dedicate their child to Christ, then a baby dedication service is entirely appropriate. However, even if infants are dedicated to the Lord, when they grow up they will still have to make a personal decision to believe in Jesus Christ in order to be saved.
Amen Bro Chad.. Just seen it donethis morning. It broke my heart for the parents and all the people who was there. The pastor saying this is what the Jews did so false.. That is not Biblical at all...

Blessings & Shalom,
debbi rennier


Great post, nothing but the truth!

Infants and Children, even Christ said" such as these have already inherited the kingdom of Heaven"; we have to some how figure that into the equation as well.
Our salvation is solidly based on "free will" choice and, until an individual has the capacity to reason, such things as water baptism is meaningless.

I think Biblically that, in the days of our Lord, baptism wasn't any different than the outward, faith , expression of circumscission with the Jews. In those days and beyond, Jews had their sign and Christian had theirs.

I agree, Baptism is for the saved and not for the unsaved and, comes after salvation and not a prerequiste to salvation.
You have some interesting arguments. I am one of those unfortunate people who was baptized as an infant. Although I didn't have the ability to say no at that time.
Yes, it is true, that the mode of baptism itself will not save someone. Only repentance and belief,faith and acceptance in Jesus Christ will do that. Although what I want to know is, does God really need another human to perform the baptism on someone ? I believe God can do the baptism by Himself. I suppose the passage relating to this in the bible is : Matthew 21:25 (King James Version) :

25 The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men? And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say unto us, Why did ye not then believe him?

Paul also clearly distinguished between 2 types of baptism, a baptism of repentance, and baptism by the Holy Spirit : Acts 19:2-5 (King James Version)

2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.

3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.

4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.

5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

It is also important to remember that baptism is not a prerequisite for salvation :

Luke 23:42-43 (King James Version)

42 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.

43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

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