Baptism is...

Discussion in 'Credo-Baptism Answers' started by Houston E., May 21, 2009.

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  1. Houston E.

    Houston E. Puritan Board Freshman

    Credo Brethren,

    Many times it has been said that we credos are great at articulating what baptism is NOT...however, given the differing views I have read here on the PB by credos, we seem to fall short of a general concensus when it comes to the discussion of what Baptism IS...
    Maybe this thread can assist in that endeavor...:think:

    Therefore, what would you say baptism IS...
  2. smhbbag

    smhbbag Puritan Board Senior

    I agree with Chapter 28 of the WCF, minus the words in bold:

    Edited to include more. I actually believe sprinkiling/pouring to be the proper mode, though baptism by immersion can still rightly be considered and called baptism (that is, I would consider someone immersed to have been baptized). So, basically - I'm with the WCF minus infants, and find no scriptural warrant to call baptism a 'seal' of any kind.
    Last edited: May 21, 2009
  3. Houston E.

    Houston E. Puritan Board Freshman

    Clarifying here...
    So it is a sign only?
    Or do you see the definition, absent the word "seal", stilly implying baptism as a means of grace?
  4. smhbbag

    smhbbag Puritan Board Senior

    I do believe it is a means of grace in a real sense (of course, as it says, not always necessarily a means of effective, salvific grace).

    This is why I quoted the rest of Ch. 28, and did not bold much of VI. I added that in the edit, probably while you were writing your post.

    But, in no way would I expect my view to be a consensus definition for the board. So, since that's what you are looking for, it might be better for me to stop there. Otherwise this may just turn into an intramural debate, when a consensus definition among most members probably is possible.
  5. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    Here is what John Tombes says concerning the chief end of baptism.

  6. Dragoon

    Dragoon Puritan Board Freshman

    And here is what Spurgeon had to say in his Catechism

    Q: What is Baptism?

    A: Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament, instituted by Jesus Christ (Mt 28:19) to be to the person baptised a sign of his fellowship with him, in his death, and burial, and resurrection (Ro 6:3 Col 2:12), of his being ingrafted into him (Ga 3:27), of remission of sins (Mr 1:4 Ac 22:16), and of his giving up himself to God through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life (Ro 6:4,5).
  7. Houston E.

    Houston E. Puritan Board Freshman

    Could it be said of credos that baptism is...

    1. a sign of regeneration
    2. a sign of entrance into the covenant community

  8. bug

    bug Puritan Board Freshman

    This must be the fairly standard articulation of baptism amongst perticular baptists;

    BCoF 1689, ch 24, the formers of the confession left out sections 5, 6 and 7 of the westminster confession when they formed the BCoF, it is perhaps worth study in to why they did not include these sections when we form our definition?
  9. Houston E.

    Houston E. Puritan Board Freshman

    I believe Waldron's book touches on this, as well as here

    -----Added 5/23/2009 at 10:26:52 EST-----

    Well, it was worth a shot...:scratch:

    :D Thanks to those who posted.
  10. William Price

    William Price Puritan Board Freshman

    I agree with baptism being a testimony of the salvation and work of God in a person's life. It testifies that you publicly identify with the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, and that you have received regeneration and redemption, not by the hand or will of man, but by the hand of God.

    It is a sacrament. I believe it to be sacred, but not salvational.
  11. Herald

    Herald Administrator Staff Member


    Baptism IS a sign. That is it's primary purpose. It is a sign of regeneration because it is a sign of the New Covenant. It is also a sign of identification. The New Covenant is made possible because of Christ (Luke 22:20). While the primary interpretation of Romans 6:4 has to do with spiritual baptism, it can be said that baptism is a sign of the resurrection. There is a difference between what baptism is and what baptism does. Baptists have been careful to warn about what baptism is not (and what it doesn't do) because of the error associated with this ordinance. Lastly, baptism is a sign of great joy for the believer because he is identifying himself with Christ and the church.
  12. Skyler

    Skyler Puritan Board Graduate

    Baptism is exactly what the Bible says it is. :2cents:
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