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Lively Stone

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Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« on: Mon Apr 11, 2011 - 23:21:50 »
Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?


Some denominations baptize babies, but other groups teach that baptism is only for those who are old enough to make a personal choice based on their own faith and repentance. Does the Bible authorize infant baptism or does it teach personal responsibility and individual accountability? Are infants born guilty of original sin and inherited depravity? What does the gospel of Jesus Christ teach?


Introduction:

Jesus clearly commanded people to be baptized (Matt. 28:18-20), yet there is much disagreement about who should be baptized.

Some religious groups baptize babies. But other people say that, before one is baptized, a person should be old enough to accept the responsibility to make his own decision whether or not to be baptized and to live the Christian life. That is, they teach individual responsibility and personal accountability. The purpose of this study is to learn what the Bible says about infant baptism.

We begin with an important basic principle: In order to participate in a religious practice with God's approval, we must find New Testament teaching authorizing that practice.

Everything we do in religion must be done by Jesus' authority (Col. 3:17). The Scriptures provide us to all good works (2 Tim. 3:16,17), so if a practice is not included in God's word, it must not be a good work. If a practice is not authorized in the New Testament, then it must be human in origin and therefore not pleasing to God (2 John 9; Gal. 1:6-9; Matt. 15:9; Prov. 14:12; etc.)

According to these Scriptures babies should be baptized only if we can find statements in the New Testament that show that God wants us to practice this. To prove infant baptism is unacceptable, we do not have to find a passage that expressly forbids the practice. Rather, if the Bible tells us specifically who to baptize, and if infants are not included in those instructions - i.e., if the gospel teaches individual responsibility and personal accountability - then the practice of baptizing babies should be abandoned.

Please consider the following Bible teaching:

Part I: Can Babies Meet the Conditions that Must Precede Baptism?

The Bible reveals that a person must do certain things before he can be baptized. If these things are not done, then the baptism would not be Scriptural. So we ask whether or not a baby can fulfill the Scriptural prerequisites of baptism.

Note that God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34,35; Rom. 2:11), so there are not two sets of prerequisites for baptism - one for babies and one for adults. Whatever the Bible requires of some people to be baptized, it requires the same of all people.

A. Before Baptism One Must Hear and Understand the Gospel.

Mark 16:15,16 - All who are baptized, must first have the gospel preached to them. But what good would be done by preaching to a baby?

John 6:44,45 - No one can come to Jesus without being taught from the Father. This does not just mean simply hearing sounds. One must "learn"; he must understand the meaning of what is being taught. Can babies do this (cf. 1 Cor. 14:20)?

Acts 2:36,41 - This example shows what it means for people to learn the gospel before they are baptized. The people were given evidence that Jesus is God's Son (v14-36). They were told that, on the basis of this evidence, they must "know assuredly" that Jesus is Lord and Christ (v36). Those who were baptized were those who gladly received this message (v41). Can babies hear and learn in this way?

B. Before Baptism One Must Believe the Gospel.

Mark 16:15,16 - Every creature who is baptized must first believe the gospel which they have been taught. Baptism is only for those who are capable of hearing and believing the gospel. No one is included in the command if they cannot first hear, understand, and believe the gospel. Can a baby do these things?

Galatians 3:26,27 - However many people are baptized, all of them must do so by faith. Everyone who is baptized must first understand the gospel well enough to believe it.

Acts 8:12 - When the people of Samaria gave heed to the gospel that was preached (v5,6), both men and women were baptized. When were they baptized? When they believed, not before. Can babies believe? If not, they should not be baptized until they do believe.

In all Bible examples of baptism, people were baptized only when they personally had full faith, based on their own understanding of the gospel. Never were they baptized on the basis of someone else's faith, such as their parents. No one else can believe for us, just like no one can be baptized for us.

 
C. Before Baptism One Must Repent of Sins.

Acts 2:38 - Every person who is baptized ("every one of you") must first repent. Repentance is a change of mind - a decision to turn from sin and begin to live for God (cf. Matt. 21:28,29). This decision involves a commitment to put God first, and to live all our lives faithfully serving Him.

Note that the person who is baptized is the same person who must first repent. This is a personal choice. No one else can make this decision for us. Can a baby make this choice? (Note that we will see later that babies do not even have any sins to repent of.)

Some people claim that "children" in v39 means babies are included in those to whom this "promise" was made. But "children" simply means offspring, regardless of age (note Matt. 3:9; 10:21; 21:28; John 8:39). The "promise" here is for those who repent and are baptized (v38); but babies cannot repent, nor can they do other things required in the context (v36,40,41,42). The "promise" to the "children" was fulfilled when they were old enough to do what God requires, not while they were babies.

 
D. Before Baptism One Must Confess Christ.

Romans 10:9,10 - To be saved, one must believe in his heart and confess Christ with his mouth. How can a baby confess Christ when it cannot even speak?

Acts 8:35-39 - Here is an example of confession before baptism. The candidate for baptism must make an understandable statement, so that the one who does the baptizing knows they are baptizing someone who has faith. Babies cannot communicate regarding their faith in any understandable way, therefore it is not Scriptural to baptize them.

Churches that baptize babies often have a practice called "confirmation." People are baptized as babies, but later when they get old enough to understand and make their own choice about serving God, they are taught and are asked to publicly "confirm" their faith and their desire to live for God. The very existence of such a practice is an admission that the child did not understand, believe, and repent before he was baptized.

We have now learned four things which the Bible says every person must personally do before he can be baptized. God is no respecter of persons, so the plan is the same for everyone. Before anyone can be baptized, he must hear and understand the gospel, believe it, repent of sins, and confess Christ. Little babies cannot do any of these things. Therefore, the command to be baptized is not addressed to them. To baptize them anyway would be to act without God's authority. It would be doing something different from what God says must be done.

Part II. Can Babies Be Baptized for the Right Reason?

A. Each Individual Is Responsible to Serve God from Proper Motives.

Romans 6:17,18 - To be freed from sin, one must obey from the heart the teaching delivered. This includes obedience in baptism (v3,4). God is pleased only when we serve Him from the willing choice of our own hearts. Our acts of service are valueless if someone else forces them upon us against our will or without our consent.

Acts 2:40,41 - People were commanded to be saved, and they responded by being baptized. Each individual personally made his own decision. No one else can obey God for us, and no one else can make that choice for us.

Other people may teach and encourage us to obey God, but they cannot decide for us whether or not we will obey. This includes obedience in baptism. Since a baby cannot possibly make this decision and cannot communicate any such decision to us, to baptize it anyway would violate God's law of personal responsibility.

 
B. Each Person Should Be Baptized for the Purpose of Receiving Forgiveness of Sins.

Again, since God is no respecter of persons, the purpose of baptism must be the same for all who are baptized. He did not give two different purposes, one for adults and another for babies. What are the proper purposes for which all must be baptized?

Mark 16:16 - He who believes and is baptized will be saved.

Acts 2:38 - Repent and be baptized for the remission of sins.

Acts 22:16 - Be baptized and wash away your sins.

1 Peter 3:21 - Baptism also now saves us.

As shown above, our service to God pleases Him only if it is offered from the right motive and purpose. So the person who is baptized must do it for the purpose of being forgiven or saved from his sins.

Consider the Lord's Supper as an illustration. Even if a person does the right actions, but if his reasons are wrong, he displeases God (1 Cor. 11:23-29). Likewise, if a person is baptized, but if he does not do it to receive forgiveness of sins, then the baptism is not Scriptural. But a baby cannot understand the meaning of baptism, so how can he be baptized from a proper motive?

C. A Baby Cannot Be Baptized to Receive Forgiveness, Because It Has No Sins to Be Forgiven.

Since baptism must be done for the purpose of receiving forgiveness of sins, a baby could Scripturally be baptized only if it was guilty of sins and needed forgiveness. But is a baby guilty of sin? How could a baby become guilty of sin?

We become sinners when we transgress God's law (1 John 3:4; James 1:13-15; Isa. 59:1,2). But a baby cannot understand God's law, so how could it be held accountable for violating it?

Some people believe that babies need baptism because they have inherited guilt from Adam. But consider:

Ezekiel 18:20 - The child does not bear the iniquity of the father, but the wickedness of the wicked is upon himself. The only person held accountable for Adam's sin is Adam, not his descendants.

2 Corinthians 5:10 - Each one will be judged according to what he has done in the body, good or bad. This means no one will be condemned for Adam's sin, except Adam!

Note that this also confirms that no one will be justified because someone else decided to do good. Specifically babies are not held accountable for a parent's decision to have a child baptized. Each person will be judged for what he chooses to do, not for what others choose to do.

Further, the Bible says that Jesus was without sin (Heb. 2:14,17; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 John 3:5). How could He have been without sin if babies inherit the guilt of Adam's sin?

If a baby is guilty of sin, what happens if it dies before it is baptized, or if its parents refuse to baptize it?

If babies are guilty of sin, if one dies without baptism, then wouldn't it follow that he is eternally lost? Almost no one will accept this conclusion, yet to deny the conclusion is to admit that babies really are not guilty of sin.

Further, since baptism is essential to salvation, if a baby is a sinner, then its salvation from sin must depend entirely on the actions of others. It must rely entirely on its parents to choose to baptize it. It has no choice in the matter, and cannot possibly influence its own destiny. This contradicts all the scriptures we have quoted showing that salvation is a matter of individual choice (2 Cor. 5:10; etc.).

Since salvation is a matter of individual choice, and since a baby cannot choose or express a choice to be baptized, we conclude that the baby is not lost to begin with. Therefore it does not need baptism.
What condition is a baby in?

Since we now know that babies have committed no sin and have inherited no sin, it follows that they must be innocent. Notice other Scriptures that confirm this conclusion:

Psalms 106:37,38; Jeremiah 19:4,5 - Babies sacrificed to idols were "innocent."

Hebrews 12:9 - God is the Father of our spirits, in contrast to human fathers (fathers of our flesh). Adam was a father of our flesh, but not of our spirit. God is the Father of our spirits. Would God give us sinful spirits?

Matthew 19:14; 18:3 - The kingdom is for those who are like little children. To enter the kingdom, we must be converted and become like little children. If children are sinners, would this not mean that we must be converted and become like little sinners?


Yet other passages show that to enter the kingdom we must become innocent or cleansed of sin (Col. 1:13,14). Therefore, becoming like little children must mean, among other things, that children are innocent.

But since Jesus said to let little children come to Him, some people say this means we should baptize babies so they can come to Him. But Jesus did not baptize the babies who came to Him. They came into His physical presence so He could touch them and pray for them (Matt. 19:13; Mark 10:13-16), not so He could baptize them. They were already acceptable to Him just as they were, without baptism.

A baby does not need forgiveness because he is not guilty. He is in a safe condition, not accountable for sin until he is old enough to be able to understand and accept the responsibility to obey God. Since baptism is for the remission of sins, and since a baby has no sins, it follows that babies do not need baptism.

Some people admit that babies have no sin, but they baptize them anyway as a "dedication" to encourage parents to train the child properly. But where does the Bible say this is the purpose of baptism? The purpose of baptism is to receive remission of sins. And furthermore, we have learned that no one can decide that another person will be dedicated to God. Each person must decide that for himself.

So no matter how you look at it, infant baptism perverts the purpose of baptism.




Lively Stone

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #1 on: Mon Apr 11, 2011 - 23:22:28 »
Continued...

Part III. Can Babies Make the Commitment that Baptism Requires?

When a person is baptized, he is making a commitment to live all the rest of his life according to the Bible. He automatically and immediately becomes subject to certain responsibilities that the Bible requires of all baptized people. A person should not be baptized unless he understands this commitment and makes it freely of his own choice.

Here are a few of the responsibilities that God requires baptized people to learn to fulfill. Can babies understand this commitment and make it freely of their own choice?

A. Baptized People Should Learn to Exhort and Encourage Other Christians.

1 Corinthians 12:13,25,26 - Note first that baptism makes people members of Jesus' body, which is the church (Eph. 1:22,23; 5:23). Some people baptize babies, but still do not consider them to be members of the church. God's word says that, when one has been Scripturally baptized, he is automatically in the church. Then all members in the church should care for, suffer with, and rejoice with other members. Can a baby learn to do this?

Ephesians 4:16 - In the body (the church) every joint and each part is to work to edify and build up the body. Can babies understand this responsibility and commit themselves to learn to fulfill it? If not, then they should not be baptized into the body.

B. Baptized People Should Learn to Worship God.

Acts 2:38-42,47 - Note again that, when people were baptized, the Lord added them to His church (v41,47). To baptize people and yet consider them not fully members of the church would be unscriptural. These baptized people then continued in the acts of worship named: breaking bread, prayer, the apostles' doctrine, etc. Can babies do this?

1 Corinthians 14:15-20 - Members of the church (this includes all baptized people - 1 Cor. 12:13) are to assemble with other Christians to sing, pray, and teach. All this should be done with understanding. But the Scripture expressly says that babies cannot do these things with the understanding that God requires (v20).

Notice the passage carefully: Members of the church should understand what is done in worship. Babies cannot understand. Therefore, babies should not be baptized into the church!

1 Corinthians 10:16,17; 11:23-29 - All members of the body (i.e., all people who are baptized - 12:13) should eat the bread and drink the cup in communion (10:16,17). Do churches that baptize babies have them partake of communion?

When members partake, they must remember Jesus' death and discern the meaning of it. If they eat without understanding, they eat and drink damnation to themselves (11:23-29). Can babies remember and discern this? If not, they should not partake. But all members of the body should partake, therefore babies should not be baptized into the body!

Clearly, God requires all members of the church to make a commitment that babies cannot make. Therefore, the command to be baptized is not addressed to babies and does not include them.

C. Baptized People Should Put God First in Their Lives.

Romans 6:3,4,11-18 - When people are baptized, they come into Christ and should walk in newness of life. They are made alive to God (newness of life), so they must not let sin reign in their bodies, but must use their members as instruments of righteousness. Obeying the gospel makes us free from sin and slaves to righteousness. But babies cannot make such choices and commitments. They should not be baptized until they are able to accept this responsibility from their own hearts.

Romans 12:1,2 - This passage is addressed to "brethren" - i.e., children of God, members of God's family, the church. But people become children of God, born again as brethren in the family, when by faith they are baptized (Rom. 6:3,4; Gal. 3:26,27; 1 Tim. 3:15). Such people should present their bodies as living sacrifices to God, not being conformed to the world. This commitment must be accepted by one who is baptized. Can babies make such a commitment?

1 Corinthians 15:58 - Brethren (i.e., people who became children of God at the point of baptism) should be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the Lord's work. If one is not able to understand this commitment and make it freely, he should not be baptized. Can babies understand and make this commitment?

Matthew 28:19,20 - Baptized people should be taught to obey all Jesus' commands. This shows that it is not necessary, at the very point of baptism, for people to know all the specific commands they must obey after baptism. But they must be capable of learning those commands. And they must have a heart willing to accept by their own free will everything Jesus says.

This is the commitment that a person makes when he repents and is baptized. No one should be baptized unless he has made such a commitment. A baby cannot do this, so he should not be baptized until he is old enough to choose for himself to do so.

Note carefully that we have learned what God says people must do before they can be baptized, during baptism (the proper purpose), and after baptism. And babies do not qualify in any of these areas. To baptize babies, then, would be to act by human authority without God's authority, thereby violating the will of God.

And, by studying what Scriptural baptism involves, we have not only shown why babies should not be baptized, but we have also show how people should be baptized properly.

Part IV. Can Infant Baptism Be Scripturally Defended?

Remember that practices displease God unless they are authorized in His word (see our introduction). We now know that the gospel clearly teaches conditions regarding baptism that babies cannot possibly meet. Yet some folks still claim that infant baptism is Scriptural. We have briefly answered several such efforts already. Let us notice some more.

A. Babies with Faith

Some people claim that babies can have faith, and therefore they should be baptized (note Matt. 18:6). But remember that denominations typically baptize babies as young as a few days or a few weeks old. Can anyone seriously believe that babies, at this age, can have the kind of faith the Bible requires before baptism?

Romans 10:13-17 - Faith comes by hearing God's word.

The only way anyone can have faith is by being taught God's word. Do churches that baptize babies teach them before baptizing them? Of course not. So they are baptizing people who have no faith.

They do, however, try to instill faith in these children later in life in "confirmation." Why is this necessary, if the child had faith and knowledge from infancy? The practices of these churches prove of themselves that they know babies do not have knowledge and faith.

And remember that 1 Cor. 14:20 expressly states that babies are not capable of having sufficient understanding to be baptized and be members of Jesus' church.
What about repenting and confessing?

We have shown that these are also required before baptism. Can babies do these? And remember that the confession must be understandable so that other people know the candidate has sufficient faith to be baptized.
And what about the responsibilities that are involved in church membership?

Can babies do these too? Remember, all baptized people are in the church and must learn to fulfill these duties. Even if babies had faith, that would only be part of what God requires. Other things are required, both before and after baptism, that babies cannot possibly accomplish.

Just suppose babies could believe. Logically, then, babies could also DISbelieve.

But the Bible says to baptize the ones that believe and not the ones that do not believe (Mark. 16:16; Acts 8:12,36,37; etc.). Do folks who practice infant baptism make a distinction between the babies that believe and those that don't? If so, how?

The Bible describes different degrees of faith (Heb. 10:39; cf. James 2:19; John 12:42,43; Matt. 14:31). Children gradually grow in understanding and in faith, but they do not have "saving" faith, sufficient to be baptized, until they are old enough to repent, confess, and fully accept the responsibility of living the Christian life, as we have already studied.

B. Household Conversions

Some people refer to Bible examples where whole households were baptized. They claim that these households must have included babies, so infant baptism is authorized. But notice:

None of these examples actually say that babies were included.

Many households do not include babies or even small children. If the Bible does not mention babies, then to claim there were babies in the household would simply be an unproved assumption. The simple fact that households were converted proves nothing by itself. Unless these passages themselves show us that babies were included, then we must settle the issue on the basis of other passages on the subject.

We have cited clear, specific evidence that people who were baptized must always first hear, believe, repent, and confess, and that they must be baptized for the right reason, and that they must be able to accept the responsibilities of church membership. Babies can do none of these things. It is a misuse of Scripture to assume without proof that babies were included in the household conversions, in contradiction to this evidence.

The contexts of the household conversions actually imply those who were baptized included no babies.

Notice each of the Bible examples of household conversions:

Cornelius' household - Acts 10:1-11:18; 15:7-11

Peter taught these people that God is no respecter of persons (10:34). So whatever anyone in the household did to be baptized, all the rest must have done the same things. Peter did not give two sets of rules, one for babies and another for adults.

Notice some things that people in this household did that babies cannot do: all in the household feared God (10:2,35); all came together to hear and receive what God had commanded (10:33,44; 11:1,14); they heard and believed (15:7,9; 10:43), they repented (11:18), and they were told to work righteousness (10:35). No babies baptized here!

Furthermore, since God is no respecter of persons, we are not going to find any examples of conversion in which less was required of people than in the examples we have already studied. Some examples may give fewer details, but no one in any household was baptized without faith, repentance, confession, etc. If such a case existed, God would be a respecter of persons.

Lydia's household - Acts 16:13-15,40

In this case there is no reason to believe that Lydia was even married, let alone that she had little children. The Bible teaches that, if a woman has a husband, he should be the head of the household (Eph. 5:22-25). So whenever the Bible refers to the activity of a household, if the husband is included in that activity, if the wife is mentioned by name then the man is also mentioned. (Notice how the other household conversions demonstrate this. Genealogies also followed this rule.)

Since Lydia's household was baptized, the fact that no man is mentioned would imply that she was the head of the household. Her household may have included relatives, especially older relatives, and perhaps servants, but no husband is implied, let alone children.

Paul later "encouraged" those who were brethren (NKJV), including Lydia's house (v40). Did this include babies?

The Jailer's household - Acts 16:23-34

Before this household was baptized, Paul spoke the word to all in the house (v32), and they believed (v31,34). Again, babies can't do these things, so no babies were included in the number baptized here.

Stephanas' household - 1 Corinthians 1:16; 16:15

Again, what verse says there were babies in this household? Note that Stephanas' house ministered to the saints. Again, people who are baptized must be old enough to be active in God's work as members of the church. This does not include babies.

The household conversions do not disprove what we have learned elsewhere. Instead they harmonize with it. All who are baptized must do things that babies cannot do. Therefore, the command to be baptized does not include babies. When people baptize babies, they follow human authority, and they displease God.
Conclusion

Infant baptism is objectionable for several reasons. By examining the problems in infant baptism, we have also shown how people should be baptized properly.

First, infant baptism is an unauthorized change in God's pattern for baptism. God tells us whom to baptize. He tells the conditions people must meet in order to be baptized, but babies do not fit. To baptize babies is to act by human authority without divine authority.

Second, infant baptism leads people to believe they are saved when they are not. God requires people to be baptized for the remission of sins when they are old enough to make their own decision about the matter. But many people have been baptized as babies. Then, when they are old enough to be responsible for their conduct so they should be baptized, they refuse because they believe they have already done so. But their infant baptism was not Scriptural. So the person goes through his whole life never having been Scripturally baptized, and therefore he never has received forgiveness of his sins!



A final objection to infant baptism is that it is almost always done by sprinkling or pouring, not by immersion. But the Bible says that baptism is a burial (Rom. 6:4; Col. 2:12). A person must go down into the water and come up out of it (Acts 8:38,39; Mark 1:9,10). Bible baptism requires much water (John 3:23). Infant baptism does not fit God's pattern on any of these points. The evidence clearly shows that Bible baptism is an immersion, not a sprinkling or pouring.

What should a person do if his baptism was not done the way the Bible teaches? He should realize that he simply has not yet obeyed God, and he needs to obey God by being baptized according to the Bible (Acts 19:1-6). If this is your need, we urge you to find a faithful local church belonging to Christ and be baptized Scripturally today!


http://www.gospelway.com/salvation/infant_baptism.php


Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #2 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:08:52 »
Why did you post this?  This doesn't sound like anything that you would agree with.  It seems to be out of line with much of your thinking, at least what you have posted elsewhere.  Are you posting it because you agree with it or are you just trying to get a rise out of someone?     

Lively Stone

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #3 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:36:26 »
Why did you post this?  This doesn't sound like anything that you would agree with.  It seems to be out of line with much of your thinking, at least what you have posted elsewhere.  Are you posting it because you agree with it or are you just trying to get a rise out of someone?     

Obviously you haven't read any of my posts on the subject. I never waste my time posting something I don't believe in. That could sway lurkers away from the truth.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #3 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:36:26 »

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #4 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:48:44 »
Why did you post this?  This doesn't sound like anything that you would agree with.  It seems to be out of line with much of your thinking, at least what you have posted elsewhere.  Are you posting it because you agree with it or are you just trying to get a rise out of someone?     

Obviously you haven't read any of my posts on the subject. I never waste my time posting something I don't believe in. That could sway lurkers away from the truth.

The reason that I am a bit confused is that, for example, you posted the following on the free will thread:


No need to really.  He has set it down for us already if you but read the words and understand the message.  What you have presented is simply irrational on any level.

We all have a choice to either receive life or reject it. What we choose determines our reward.

Holy Spirit woos us, but it is ours to say either yea or nay to Him. If you think that is irrational, you need to ask God about His irrational design.




It seems as if you and Jimmy agree, yet you are giving Kudos to Gospel who rejects free will.


Am I missing something?

I don't know about Jimmy, but I noticed about gospel. Now, you will see grace in action. Listen and learn, grasshopper.

About the last thing that gospel would ever agree with is what you have posted here on baptism.  I fail to understand how you can hold to what gospel posts and believe what you say here about baptism.

How can you possibly believe what you posted there about baptism and not believe that we have free will?

For what it is worth I agree with nearly everything you wrote concerning baptism in this post.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #4 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:48:44 »

Lively Stone

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #5 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 08:51:57 »
I don't understand what you mean.  ::headscratch:: We have free will to receive or reject Christ apart from the beckoning of Holy Spirit. What does that have to do with what the Bible teaches us about baptism?

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #6 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:00:01 »
God never prescribed infant baptism because in baptism is where sins are removed. 

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord. Acts 22:16 ...be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins,...Acts 2:38

Infants have no sins to be removed. 

Baptism removes the inward guilt, supplying a divinely clear conscience.
...baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,)...1 Peter 3:21
Babies already have  clear consciences. 

Baptism puts one into Christ where there is no condemnation.
[There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, Romans 8:1.  Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.  Galatians 3:27
Babies, being sinless, are in no danger of condemnation. 

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #7 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:01:19 »
You said,
We have free will to receive or reject Christ apart from the beckoning of Holy Spirit.

Did you mean that?

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #8 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:02:14 »
God never prescribed infant baptism because in baptism is where sins are removed. 

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord. Acts 22:16 ...be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins,...Acts 2:38

Infants have no sins to be removed. 

Baptism removes the inward guilt, supplying a divinely clear conscience.
...baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,)...1 Peter 3:21
Babies already have  clear consciences. 

Baptism puts one into Christ where there is no condemnation.
[There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, Romans 8:1.  Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.  Galatians 3:27
Babies, being sinless, are in no danger of condemnation. 

Amen, Sister.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #8 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:02:14 »

Lively Stone

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #9 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:20:22 »
You said,
We have free will to receive or reject Christ apart from the beckoning of Holy Spirit.

Did you mean that?

Why?

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #10 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:27:50 »
You said,
We have free will to receive or reject Christ apart from the beckoning of Holy Spirit.

Did you mean that?

Why?

Rom 10:17  So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

The only way we can hear the word of Christ is through the Scriptures given us by and through the Holy Spirit.  To read the Bible is a beckoning of the Holy Spirit.

But whatever.  I agree with most of what your OP says about baptism.

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #11 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:33:27 »
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.

Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.

Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."

Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #12 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:41:03 »
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.

Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.

Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."

Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline vicki

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #13 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 09:53:23 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
   Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized. 
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise. 

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.   

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #14 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 10:13:25 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
   Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized. 
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise. 

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.   

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #15 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 10:19:18 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
   Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized. 
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise. 

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.   

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Lively Stone

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #16 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 10:24:12 »
Infant baptism was NOT practiced or taught by the apostles! It is not biblical. It is an add-on to RC Sacred Traditions.


Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #17 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 12:38:34 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
   Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized. 
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise. 

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.   

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #18 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 12:40:23 »
Infant baptism was NOT practiced or taught by the apostles! It is not biblical. It is an add-on to RC Sacred Traditions.



Of course it is.  We read of entire households being baptized the same day as one other person in the household accepted Christ.

We also read from the early Church that infant baptism was taught by the apostles.

There is nothing in scripture that teaches against infant baptism.

You are just leaning on man made dogma of recent years.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #19 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 12:49:53 »


Quote
Of course it is.  We read of entire households being baptized the same day as one other person in the household accepted Christ.
But we don't read of infants being baptized.  You're assuming that infants were in the household and thus were baptized.   And you go far far far out on a limb when you say that only one other person believed and then the whole family was baptized.  Funny how you can decide that the other persons did not have to believe to be baptized but then also deduce that babies were there.  The  truth is, every one that was baptized in the household was also someone that chose to believe. 
  You need more than this to introduce this doctrine. 

Quote
We also read from the early Church that infant baptism was taught by the apostles.
But we don't read this in the bible which is all that matters.  Scripture only my friend, scripture only. 

Quote
There is nothing in scripture that teaches against infant baptism.
Fallacy 101.   There is nothing in scripture that teaches for infant baptism either.

Quote
You are just leaning on man made dogma of recent years.
I am leaning on the inspired apostles and Jesus Christ.   Not some uninspired men that chose to be called church fathers.   

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #20 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 13:21:07 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
  Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized.  
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise.  

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.  

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #21 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 13:44:18 »
chesterton, just to address a few of the statements you've made:
Quote
Matt 19:14 - Jesus clearly says the kingdom of heaven also belongs to children. There is no age limit on entering the kingdom, and no age limit for being eligible for baptism.
  Since the kingdom belongs to the innocent children, there is no need for them to be baptized.  
Quote
Mark 10:14 - Jesus says to let the children come to Him for the kingdom of God also belongs to them. Jesus says nothing about being too young to come into the kingdom of God.
The inherent fallacy here is that the children need to be baptized when Christ is already making a connection between the kingdom and the innocence of children.   This goes against your premise.  

Quote
Mark 16:16 - Jesus says to the crowd, "He who believes and is baptized will be saved." But in reference to the same people, Jesus immediately follows with "He who does not believe will be condemned." This demonstrates that one can be baptized and still not be a believer. This disproves the Protestant argument that one must be a believer to be baptized. There is nothing in the Bible about a "believer's baptism."
This says nothing of the sort.   He who does not believe will also not go on to be baptized.  

Quote
Luke 18:15 – Jesus says, “Let the children come to me.

Offline vicki

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #22 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 14:59:23 »
One thing is for certain:  Eternal life is of the highest priority for me.   And I would not want to be within any group of individuals that had the opportunity to take advantage of that one type of sin absolving immersion into water that Christ commissioned (through the mouth of Peter) yet chose to accept a man made version of immersion instead.   woe unto them

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #23 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 15:03:30 »
One thing is for certain:  Eternal life is of the highest priority for me.   And I would not want to be within any group of individuals that had the opportunity to take advantage of that one type of sin absolving immersion into water that Christ commissioned (through the mouth of Peter) yet chose to accept a man made version of immersion instead.   woe unto them

That's not biblical.

Here's some scripture for you to consider:

John 6
 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.

John 20
21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.

Offline gospel

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #24 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 15:07:26 »
One thing is for certain:  Eternal life is of the highest priority for me.   And I would not want to be within any group of individuals that had the opportunity to take advantage of that one type of sin absolving immersion into water that Christ commissioned (through the mouth of Peter) yet chose to accept a man made version of immersion instead.   woe unto them

That's not biblical.

Here's some scripture for you to consider:

John 6
 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.

John 20
21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.

Offline chestertonrules

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #25 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 15:09:58 »

 ::frown::

What does any of that have to do with an infant who doesn't even have the consciousness to know he's going potty on himself?

Geesh!

Nothing.  I was just demonstrating how much man made dogma infects protestantism.

There is nothing in scripture that says that baptism must be by immersion nor is there anything that says that infants shouldn't be baptized.

Yet, these verses are completely ignored by protestants and they are explicit and clear:


John 6
 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.

John 20
21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.

Offline vicki

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #26 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 15:17:14 »
Well I suppose some discernment is now in order.   How is one supposed to eat and drink the literal flesh and blood of Christ?

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #27 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 16:09:43 »
Well I suppose some discernment is now in order.   How is one supposed to eat and drink the literal flesh and blood of Christ?

That's the wrong question to ask of a good Catholic  ::smile::

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #28 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 21:40:32 »
Well I suppose some discernment is now in order.   How is one supposed to eat and drink the literal flesh and blood of Christ?

When we participate in a valid eucharist we eat his body and drink his blood.

This is what Christians have always believed.

Even Martin Luther didn't lose his faith in the eucharist!

"Who, but the devil, has granted such license of wresting the words of the holy Scripture? Who ever read in the Scriptures, that my body is the same as the sign of my body? or, that is is the same as it signifies? What language in the world ever spoke so? It is only then the devil, that imposes upon us by these fanatical men. Not one of the Fathers of the Church, though so numerous, ever spoke as the Sacramentarians: not one of them ever said, It is only bread and wine; or, the body and blood of Christ is not there present.

Surely, it is not credible, nor possible, since they often speak, and repeat their sentiments, that they should never (if they thought so) not so much as once, say, or let slip these words: It is bread only; or the body of Christ is not there, especially it being of great importance, that men should not be deceived. Certainly, in so many Fathers, and in so many writings, the negative might at least be found in one of them, had they thought the body and blood of Christ were not really present: but they are all of them unanimous.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #29 on: Tue Apr 12, 2011 - 23:36:12 »
Infant baptism was NOT practiced or taught by the apostles! It is not biblical. It is an add-on to RC Sacred Traditions.



Of course it is.  We read of entire households being baptized the same day as one other person in the household accepted Christ.

Nope. If you knew the Bible and allowed Holy Spirit to reveal to you the truth of the matter, you would get it.

Quote
We also read from the early Church that infant baptism was taught by the apostles.

The early Catholic church is lying.

Quote
There is nothing in scripture that teaches against infant baptism.

If you knew the word you wouldn't say that.

Quote
You are just leaning on man made dogma of recent years.

That's a stupid remark. You can see scripture in the OP used to lay out the truth. Your church dogma has you by the tail.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #30 on: Wed Apr 13, 2011 - 00:07:27 »
But chesterton, the wine and bread doesn't physically change or else you'd be able to scientifically test it (as well as taste it)  ::bracingmyself::  - Christ's body died, and then He rose from the grave with a new body which is now in heaven.
When He says it is his body He means it represents His body which was broken for us and the wine represents His blood that was poured out for us.
We do this to never forget what He's done for us.

When Jesus was teaching in the synagogue and said this; many got upset because they misunderstood what He was saying, they thought He wanted them to eat his actual flesh and drink his actual blood.

Jesus used symbols at times. Like for example He said "I am the vine" ....but we know He was not an actual vine, and He said that we are the branches....but we know we are human beings and are not actual branches.

Jesus also called us sheep, but we are clearly not sheep.



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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #31 on: Wed Apr 13, 2011 - 06:56:56 »
But chesterton, the wine and bread doesn't physically change or else you'd be able to scientifically test it (as well as taste it)  ::bracingmyself::  - Christ's body died, and then He rose from the grave with a new body which is now in heaven.
When He says it is his body He means it represents His body which was broken for us and the wine represents His blood that was poured out for us.
We do this to never forget what He's done for us.

When Jesus was teaching in the synagogue and said this; many got upset because they misunderstood what He was saying, they thought He wanted them to eat his actual flesh and drink his actual blood.

Jesus used symbols at times. Like for example He said "I am the vine" ....but we know He was not an actual vine, and He said that we are the branches....but we know we are human beings and are not actual branches.

Jesus also called us sheep, but we are clearly not sheep.

It does change, just a a person becomes a new creation when Jesus takes control of their life, yet they don't look any different.

You must have faith.  Don't be like those who left Jesus because they couldn't accept this hard teaching.

John 6: 60    On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #32 on: Wed Apr 13, 2011 - 15:12:57 »
Be like Jesus.

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #33 on: Wed Apr 13, 2011 - 15:17:04 »
Be like Jesus.

Amen!!

Follow those he sent.

If you reject them, you are rejecting him!!

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Re: Infant Baptism and the Bible: Should Babies Be Baptized?
« Reply #34 on: Wed Apr 13, 2011 - 15:42:51 »
Be like Jesus.

Amen!!

Follow those he sent.

If you reject them, you are rejecting him!!

I have to be sure anyone I emulate belongs to Jesus and places Him first above anything.

I choose to emulate my leaders placed in my life by God Himself.