The Purpose of Bible Study • Baptism • 2/4/2014


     Thursday, 4 February, was devoted to an interesting, hopefully educational and very thought-provoking discussion on baptism. It was made more so because in the group we have at least five different denominations represented. 

     Gail was right on target when she said if we were all from one denomination we would only hear that particular denomination's point of view. We had lots of points of view:-)

     In summarizing our discussion I will provide several links to articles that I recommend for your reading. I really encourage you to take a few minutes and read these articles. 

     But first, the phrase I was trying, and failing, to remember is from a German Lutheran theologian, Rupertus Meldenius, from around 1627, during the 30 years war. He wrote:

     "In the essentials unity, in the non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity.

     A short article discussing this quote can be found by clicking here. I suggest that you start by reading it.

     Next, I'll bet that you will agree with Dr. John MaCarthur and Dr. R.C. Sproul when they discuss baptism. When I read Dr. MaCarthur's comments I thought to myself, "I agree with him. Then, when I read Dr. R.C. Sproul's comments I thought to myself, "I agree with him." 

     Here is the kicker: one argues for infant baptism and one argues against...

     How can it be that I agree with both of them? 

     Paul wrote in 1Timothy 3:16a, ”Great indeed is the mystery of godliness." 

     “In the essentials unity, in the non-essentials liberty, in all things charity.”

     Here are several additional links to articles on baptism. I do suggest that you read them for your own education. 

          From CRI:  Bringing Baptism into Biblical Balance

          From CARN: Is Baptism Necessary for Salvation?

          From GotQuestions: Is Baptism Necessary for Salvation?

     Our Savior directed us to baptize. Just because it is confusing, perhaps difficult, and there are varying and very different opinions about it, and churches have differed over baptism for years, none of that means that we might ignore it or sidestep it.

     “In the essentials unity, in the non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity."

     Wikipedia has an extensive chart on differing denominational positions vis-ŕ-vis baptism. If you are interested click here to read it.