RC baptism validity and the anomaly of . . .

Discussion in 'Credo-Baptism Answers' started by DMcFadden, Nov 25, 2009.

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  1. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritanboard Commissioner

    Over on the "other" side of the aisle, they are talking about whether RC baptism is valid or not.

    This raises some interesting questions. I wonder . . .

    * If RC baptism is invalid because of the corruption of the RC church, why did the reformers refuse to be "re-baptized" again themselves, accepting their RC baptism as valid? Why did they so condemn the Anabaptists for practicing "re-baptism" for denying the validity of RC baptism?

    * Wouldn't it be more consistent for a paedo-baptist to accept the historical position that the validity of the baptism does not depend upon the purity of the church or the officiant?

  2. steadfast7

    steadfast7 Puritan Board Junior

    Things that make you go ... "mmm"

    Maybe within a paedo baptist framework, this makes perfect sense. Afterall, as I've learned, baptism for PB is merely a sign of the administration of a covenant, not a sign of its establishment.

    There are many in the forum who believe that there is no saving grace being dispensed in Rome whatsoever; they are apostate and have no share in the kingdom. But apparently they can administer signs well enough. I wonder if they would believe that an atheist could administer baptism ...?
  3. Herald

    Herald Administrator Staff Member


    Since I believe paedobaptism is in error, it sort of renders the Roman Catholic issue moot. Still, one has to ask himself whether it was difficult for the early Reformers to "throw the baby out with the bath water." Luther truly wanted to reform the Roman Catholic church, not abandon it.
  4. KMK

    KMK Administrator Staff Member

    Your's are the arguments that I hear most often from Presbyterians on the PB concerning RC baptism. If I remember correctly, even Rev Morecraft III argues in favor of RC baptism.

    To despise a man's baptism based upon the purity of the church involved sounds like a slippery slope to me. But I have my eye on that other thread and am sure someone will address my concern.
  5. Theogenes

    Theogenes Puritan Board Junior

    Earlier in the reformation, the reformers were trying to reform the RC church, believing it to be just that, a church in need of reformation. However, as time went on the vast majority of them came to see the Papacy as the AntiChrist and her system as the great whore of babylon, the beast. And once the council of Trent officially anathematized the Gospel there was no possibility of reform, only separation. Regarding the Anabaptist rejection of RC baptism, they also rejected infant baptism per se. The Reformers, who by and large, had been baptized BEFORE Trent didn't want to throw out the baby with the Baptism waters, so to speak, believing infant baptism was biblical.
  6. louis_jp

    louis_jp Puritan Board Freshman

    I haven't really thought this through, but I am inclined to think that there is a difference between pre- and post-reformation baptisms.
  7. KMK

    KMK Administrator Staff Member

    Just a reminder that this is a 'Credo-Answers Only' Forum! (Although I suspect DMac might have placed it here because he is kind of a 'stinker'. And I mean that in the most charitable way possible.)
  8. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritanboard Commissioner

    I placed it here because Josh (quite correctly) chased all the credos out of the other thread. I did not want to disobey an Administrator or show any disrespect to his judgment. Hence, this was my only option for raising the issue.

    The reference to Trent only works if it has been the consistent paedobaptist position to disallow RC baptisms following Trent. I did not realize that that was the position.
  9. smhbbag

    smhbbag Puritan Board Senior

    I don't know that for all of us it is a standard for purity in the baptizing church, but on the judgment over whether it is a church at all.

    I agree that the purity of the baptizing church should never be considered. However wayward it may be, if the baptizing church is within the bounds of the gospel, its baptism should be respected.

    Yet, there must be a baptizing church.

    In my mind, Rome does not have a saving gospel, and therefore cannot be called a church nor even a Christian institution. Therefore it does not and cannot baptize, regardless of how many times it may assert that it does.
  10. steadfast7

    steadfast7 Puritan Board Junior

    It seems to me that the Reformers had already anathematized Rome's gospel, and Trent was just the rubber stamp that made it official that what they had done was right. They must have known that the institution that baptized them was Antichrist, yet they had to concede that there was still grace to be found within it.
  11. Rich Koster

    Rich Koster Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I think we must consider the early controversy about what to do about " the lapsed". If I recall correctly, they did not invalidate one's baptism because of the apostasy of the person who performed it. Therefore, we should grit our teeth and accept a baptism in the name of the Father Son & Holy Ghost if the individual states that it was done so.
  12. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    This is a good read by the way. You can get the book from the Trinity Foundation or in J. H. Thornwells works.

    Sacramental Sorcery by James Henry Thornwell

    As far as we are concerned administration of baptism for a cognizant credible confession is the practice of our Church. It is to be performed by those who are called and qualified to do it.

  13. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritanboard Commissioner

    The implications for credo baptists are indirect, however, real. If the validity of the act is dependent upon the purity of the officiant or the church, that raises issues well beyond the one of RC baptism.
  14. Rich Koster

    Rich Koster Puritan Board Post-Graduate


    Yep, for example: what would we do about someone Ted Haggard baptized?
  15. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    I believe it depends on what he confessed he was being baptized for. The Elders of a RB church would have to evaluate that In my humble opinion. Do we separate confession from baptism?
  16. KMK

    KMK Administrator Staff Member

    Sorry, Dennis. I guess I am the 'stinker'. :oops:
  17. Rich Koster

    Rich Koster Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    That is my drift. If the person was baptized because of his faith in Christ as savior, the level of error or corruption of the person and congregation that did it should be irrelevant if the person appears to be genuinely in Christ.

    If a person was baptized at camp because he was hot, the lake looked refreshing and all of his friends did it, we have an issue, dont we?
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