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On Sunday we are having Ruby baptised.
Here are some reasons why

1. Because we are children of Abraham so we treat our children the way he treated his (Genesis 17).

2. Because the New Testament never retracts 2000 years of Biblical practice regarding households and the covenant sign.

3. Because the covenant sign (even the sign and seal of "justification by faith") is explicitly for children of the covenant to grow up into (Romans 4:11)

4. Because sacraments are visible words and we want to tell her God loves her.

5. Because we want to surround her with every gospel promise.

6. Because we want to raise her as a Christian.

7. Because she's not a Muslim, a pagan or a neutral. She is ours and we are Christ's.

8. Because "as for me and my *household* we will serve the LORD." (Josh 24:15)

9. Because in the Bible when households rejoice in the Lord, households are baptised. This household rejoices in the Lord.

10. Because we want to pray and worship with Ruby and foreigners to the covenant cannot do that.

11. Because we want to declare to her, to the church, the world and every principality and power that Ruby belongs to Jesus.

12. Because she belongs to Christ's body.

13. Because nothing says "Gospel" like declaring Christ's love to the powerless.

14. Because we want her personal response to Jesus to be a personal *response* to Jesus.

15. Because we think faith is so vital that we must do everything we can to elicit faith - therefore we drench her in God's promises.

16. Because to be credo-anything, the promise must come first. And baptism is a promise.

17. Because we don't so much dedicate Ruby to Jesus, He claims her for His own.

18. Because Jesus said "Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them." (Matthew 19:14)

19. Because, as regards our simple trust in Christ, we are meant to be like children, not the other way around. (Matthew 18:3)

20. Because faith does not earn gospel promises, gospel promises elicit faith.

21. Because sacraments are not our declarations to God but His to us. The arrow comes down - and it comes down to the unworthy.




This gets me every time.  From a French Reformed Baptismal Liturgy:

“For you, little child,
Jesus Christ has come, he has fought, he has suffered.
For you he entered the shadow of Gethsemane and the
horror of Calvary.
For you he uttered the cry, ‘It is finished!’
For you he rose from the dead
and ascended into heaven
and there he intercedes —
for you, little child, even though you do not know it.
But in this way the word of the Gospel becomes true.”
“We love him, because he first loved us.”


1) How does Piper square his love of Jonathan Edwards with his own pre-mill and credo-baptist theology?  Is there anywhere where he talks about parting company with Edwards?

2) Does anyone see the irony of two young guns bumping fists behind Piper just as he lays into the dumb guys that surround Wilson?  Or was that irony intended by said young guns?




Baptism strikes me as a good instance of how we all need to have a rich and deep theology.  To answer the question 'Should I baptize my child?' will require some pretty serious considerations of the nature of faith and salvation and church and covenant and OT/NT relations etc.  I hazard to suggest that those who say "You have your theology, I just have my bible" simply couldn't come up with an argument for paedo or credo baptism without some kind of systematic considerations.

You might have guessed (being an Anglican and a covenant theologian) that I believe in baptizing infants in Christian households.  I digress into this issue here in a sermon on Genesis 17.  To put it briefly I believe that OT saints were to circumcize all in their households (on the 8th day) as an entrance into the covenant community.  They were meant to grow up from within that covenant community as full members.  But for that very reason they were urged to inwardly own the outward sign of their belonging and to have a circumcized heart (Deut 10:16; 30:6; Jer 4:4).  Without this they forgo all the benefits of the outward sign and will in the end be treated as not simply uncircumcised but as covenant-breakers - a fearful position to be in.  In this sense I believe in baptizing infants in Christian households.  I do think Col 2:11-12 makes the link between circumcision and baptism though not directly but through Christ.  I believe it is the NT sign of belonging to the covenant people.  In this sense it is appropriate to baptize youngsters, to proclaim the gospel promises over them, to treat them as full members of the church and to urge them as they grow up to own the meaning of their baptism inwardly (a baptism of the heart).  That kinda thing.

Anyway, there's a guy in our congregation who wants to talk through who we should baptize.  Anyone got any suggestions for some good books we could look at?  (From any perspective) 


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