First off let me say that all of this is my personal opinion. If any of you Infant baptismists think I am too off; Please, PM me or something and tell me where I stray (You Baptists can also do that, but I will probably take it better from someone who shares 50% with me instead of 0%.) I don't want a wrong belief.
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.
I don't think that that is what baptism symbolizes (I will get to what I think does symbolize that later)
The Bible does not record any infants being baptized.
Again, because it was only talking about 1st-Generation Christians not 2nd-Gs
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.
All Circumcision symbolized is that you were a Jew (ethnically) (notice that the kids had no choice in whether they were Jews or not) and so likewise Baptism symbolizes that you are a Christian (ethnically). So I agree that: the view that if you are baptized you are ipsofacto saved 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.
The Old Covenant and the New Covenant are not 100% the same. The Old Covenant has two parts: First, Being a Jew ethnically (by circumcision), Second, being a Jew spiritually by obeying all the laws, and thus being acceptable to God. The New Covenant has two parts: The first part is being a christian ethnically (by baptism), and the second part is being a Christian Spiritually by accepting Christ as our lord and savior (and if you really do have God in you they you will obey all that he says), and thus being acceptable to God.
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).
Absolutely 100% true.
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.
(see last comment)
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.
Here is where I disagree. (one with immersion (and only immersion) but that is not as big deal) Baptism is not the sign of being a Christian spiritually and thus doesn't fit here.
Infant baptism does not fit the Biblical definition of baptism or the Biblical method of baptism.
Nowhere does it say in the bible "this is the definition of christian baptism" so I would be a little hesitant to say what he just said to quickly. Depending on who you ask you may get a different definition of baptism. I personally think that infant baptism does
fit the biblical meaning and mode 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.
Agreed. If an infant is dedicated he/she will still have to be baptized later. I personally don't have anything explicitly
against infant dedication, (I do think that they have the wrong interpretation but I won't condemn anyone who does it), but I think that an infant should be baptized.
Many Reformed traditions have made a very close parallel between circumcision and baptism and have used the Old Testament teaching on circumcision to justify the baptism of infants. The argument goes like this: since infants born into the Old Testament Jewish community were circumcised, infants born into the New Testament church community should be baptized.
While there are parallels between baptism and circumcision, they symbolize two very different covenants.
Agreed. One was works biased, the other was Grace biased
The Old Covenant had a physical means of entrance: one was born to Jewish parents or bought as a servant into a Jewish household (Genesis 17:10-13). One’s spiritual life was unconnected to the sign of circumcision.
Kind of. The fact that you were a Jew ethnically (by circumcision) meant that you HAD to obey all the laws.
Every male was circumcised, whether he showed any devotion to God or not. However, even in the Old Testament, there was recognition that physical circumcision was not enough. Moses commanded the Israelites in Deuteronomy 10:16 to circumcise their hearts, and even promised that God would do the circumcising (Deuteronomy 30:6). Jeremiah also preached the need for a circumcision of the heart (Jeremiah 4:4).
Yes, that is entirely different from physical circumcision. Likewise, There is a difference between physical baptism and accepting Christ to change your heart.
In contrast, the New Covenant has a spiritual means of entrance: one must believe and be saved (Acts 16:31). Therefore, one’s spiritual life is closely connected to the sign of baptism.
True, but only a little bit more that circumcision.
If baptism indicates an entrance into the New Covenant, then only those devoted to God and trusting in Jesus should be baptized.
Ok, Now what you have been all waiting for. "If baptism is not the only sign of the New Covenant, (and is only the sign of interance into the christian community,) What do you think is the sign of main sign of the New Covenant?" (This is really where I need you guys to tell me if I have strayed. This is just my rough idea that I would really like input on).
I think that Communion (The Eucharist) is the bigger sign of the New Covenant. Mat 26:26-28 While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant
, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.
When you take communion you are saying "I believe that Christ died for my sin, and rose from the dead conquering death to give me life with Jesus." (1Co 11:26) And to take it without believing that is blatant lying (1Co 11:27-30).
But before you can take communion you have to make a public profession of faith and that is where that comes in (which I have seen many, many churches do.)
That is what I think, but again if you think I am too far off PM/respond and I may change but "Unless I am convinced by scripture and plain reason, and not by popes or bishops or councils who have so often contradicted themselves, I can not and will not go against my conscience because to do so is neither safe nor right. Here I stand. I can do no other. So help me God." (Martian Luther. Diet of Worms)