Baptism Is Commanded

Baptism is not merely a doctrine; it is a command. In the Great Commission the church is commanded to baptize disciples. If you are an unbaptized disciple and I make no effort to baptize you, that’s neither kindness, nor humility, nor generosity; it is simply disobedience. It is the valuing of my relationship with you as your friend over my relationship with Christ as His servant.

Granted, there is difference of opinion over whether one is or is not baptized when one has been sprinkled with water contrary to one’s will. But I write for those who are of the opinion that baptism is the immersion of believers in water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. For you, to know that a disciple is unbaptized and to make no effort to baptize that believer is disobedience.

That point, so plain in scripture, is totally missed in this article.

Today’s uncharacteristically brief blog posting offered just to confound my friend Wes Kenney.

Comments

  1. John Wylie says

    Great article Dr. Barber. I read the article that you posted the link to. I think that the thing that offends me about paedobaptism is that it violates at least two fairly clear biblical principles: 1.) It gets the order wrong, Jesus gave us the order in the Great Commission and 2.) it gets the picture wrong, baptism is a picture of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus (Romans 6) and sprinkling doesn’t capture that picture. I have other comments I will make later as the discussion progresses.

  2. volfan007 says

    Some Baptists died over the issue of infant baptism….preaching that it was wrong. They believed so strongly in Believer’s Baptism that they were willing to die on this truth.

    Believer’s baptism by immersion should be very important to us, as well.

    We had a Church that tried to join our local Association, which accepted people into their membership, who had been sprinkled on top of the head, instead of being Scripturally baptised. We would not let them join due to this error in doctrine.

    David

    • Andy Williams says

      While I don’t begrudge your association the right to exclude this church, I don’t see the benifit of us begrudging that church to practice Baptism in it’s own way. After all, we don’t go around very often calling all the Presbyterians sinners and disobedient for their practice.

      Also, In church history, people died for, and killed for, a whole bunch of things…some more important than others…so that in itself doesn’t mean it is not an issue we can now agree to disagree on.

      • volfan007 says

        Andy,

        We didn’t begrudge that church, anything. They are completely free to do whatever they feel is right. They are totally free to be whatever kind of church that they want to be. Our Association is also free to be what we feel led of God to be. And, baptism is too important to us to water it down, or to compromise. if this Church gets their doctrine right about baptism, and then petitions to become a part of us, then we would certainly consider them, again.

        So, I take it that you think sprinkling on top of the head is okay? or, that infant baptism is acceptable?

        David

        • John Wylie says

          One thing that I love in SBC life is that all institutions whether local churches, associations or state convention are autonomous and can set the requirements for membership for their respective bodies. Our local association will not accept a church into membership that does not exclusively practice and require believer’s baptism by immersion.

        • Andy says

          It depends on what you mean by “OK”.

          I am strongly convinced that immersion of believers is the biblical mode of baptism. However,

          -I realize that very early in the early church, for various reasons relating to hiding from persecution & availability of large bodies of water, pouring of water over the head was practiced. If I were in a remote village where the only water source was a running brook that was only 3 inches deep…filling a pitcher with water and pouring it would be sufficient for me.

          -I also recognize that some, many Christians disagree with me on the mode of baptism. I suppose when it comes down to it, do not view them as living in disobedience, rather as those who understand scripture incorrectly on this issue. I would also say that I think SOME of those who are in the church of Christ are real christians who simply have an incorrect, or fuzzy understanding of baptism…(just like many baptist, quite frankly).

          Hope that helps.

          • volfan007 says

            Would you receive people into your church, who were baptised as babies? And, would you let people, who were just sprinkled, or had water poured on top of their heads, join your Church?

            David

          • andy says

            Vol, If I were the senior pastor advising my church on membership requirements (I am none of those)…I would probably consider those options, perhaps raise the issue for some debate among the pastors or leadership team…but probably still come down on the side of requiring believers baptism by immersion, assuming there was not some apocalytic water shortage…

            …However, being a good congragationalist, if the church voted to allow those baptized as infants, then I would be ok with that, and would not seek to leave because of it.

            hope that helps.

    • Tarheel says

      Volfan,

      I believe very strongly and am very defensive of believers baptism by immersion…like I said this is a major reason I am a Baptist. I could not personally compromise my conviction on this issue by pastoring or joining a church that exclusively practices modes of baptism that are not acceptable to me.

      Further, I would have sided with you on excluding that church who wanted to join an BAPTIST association and so clearly practiced a mode and method of baptism that is not in keeping with the principles of the Baptist denomination.

      Additionally, as I indicated in my previous post, I do not think that believing individuals who have been baptized differently should even attempt to join a Baptist church without being willing to be baptized according to our beliefs regarding it…much less should they be accepted into membership if they refuse.

      That being said…I am not willing to die over this issue. I am not willing to separate from my gospel preaching brothers and sisters in Christ over this issue. It is a second tier issue and tremendously important – but it demonstrates, IMO the need for denominations within evangelicalism , more than the need for demeaning or begrudging those believers who believe differently.

      • volfan007 says

        Tarheel,

        I still love my Brothers and Sisters in Christ, who don’t baptise like we do. That’s not even an issue, here, nor is it what I said. But, whenever some Church wants to be a part of our Association, or TN Bapt. Conv., or SBC, then it should be an issue. Are we willing to compromise our convictions on Scriptural baptism, and allow baby baptisers join us? Should we let those, who sprinkle and/or pour join with us? Being in such Scriptural error?

        My answer is no.

        David

        • Tarheel says

          Personally, sprinklers and pourers upon beleivers, while still in error, IMO….are a different animal than “baby baptizers”.

          I agree with you though that those who practice baby baptism as a means of salvation should find another denomination to be a part of.

          I like the saying “there is an an app for that”

          We could say…

          “there is a denom for that.”

    • Chris Roberts says

      Throughout history, many people have shed their blood for a multitude of mutually exclusive beliefs. It does nothing to demonstrate whether or not their particular cause was truly important just because they believed it worth their lives.

  3. Chris Johnson says

    Brother Bart,

    Always an interesting subject. Thanks for the link.

    One thing I always say, is “that a doctrine in regression quickly becomes an item of convenience.” All too often baptism gets out of focus, and history has a well worn record of convenience. The reason baptism is a command is pretty simple, …our King said that we need to be recognized in this way to show the power of what He would send us…the Holy Spirit. Some didn’t know that the Holy Spirit had been given, but once they did, they were baptized.

    When one realizes the importance of the giving of the wonderful counselor, baptism becomes a priority; because the essence and impact of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus is real and lived out in the body of the church. The same goes for the remembrance of our Lord as well with the bread and wine…..where it no longer becomes a conveniently scheduled event; but when understood, a must have relationship.

    Blessings,
    Chris

  4. says

    Well, as a still ordained SB minister and former teaching elder and current ruling elder in the PCA I have to politely disagree and say that the article referenced is refreshing and I hope his tribe increases. I do get that for, shall I say “strict credo immersionists,” this is a non negotiable since (as already commented on) “immersion is baptism” and paedos get the order wrong.

    However, many of us contend it is not quite so clear. But I do hope for more charity on the matter in the decades to come.

    Blessings my credo immersion only brothers.

    • Chris Johnson says

      Brother Les,

      I do agree with you that baptism, even to many baptists, is not well taught doctrine.

      Since you are following the PCA tradition at this time,…do you know if the PCA tradition only sprinkles, or do they immerse as well. I am always curious when springing became the tradition used by the PCA. I am just not sure when that began as the de facto standard. Do you know?

      Blessings,
      Chris

    • says

      Chris,

      Actually the PCA confessional standards (to which all ministers must subscribe…but members do not have to so subscribe) the WCF and catechisms allow for sprinkling, pouring or immersion. And of course we accept credo immersion folks into membership all the time.

      As to when the PCA became a de facto sprinkling/pouring church, I think it has always been such since her beginnings in the early 1970s when they broke away from the bible denying PCUSA. But I think basically all Presby denominations are de facto sprinkle/pourers. I do know a few ministers who will immerse if asked to and I myself would and in fact have done so as recently as March in Haiti with our partner Baptist church there.

      A fun exercise would be to ask a PCA minister friend if he WOULD immersion if asked. I suspect in most cases you’ll get a hemming and hawing muddled reply.

      Les

      • Chris Johnson says

        Thanks Les,
        That would be an interesting question to a PCA minister.

        Blessings,
        Chris

      • Adam Blosser says

        I attended a PCA church some while I was in college. One day there was a “baptism” to be done of a lady who had come to faith in Christ as an adult. The pastor said before pouring water on her that they recognized two legitimate modes of baptism: sprinkling and pouring. I had never heard that before. I knew Presbyterians practiced sprinkling and pouring, but did not realize that this brother would say that immersion was not a legitimate mode of baptism. I emailed him to find out more. He graciously had lunch with me one day on campus, explained why he believed what he believed, and answered my questions. He didn’t convince me, but I certainly appreciated his willingness to talk with me and answer my questions.

        • Chris Johnson says

          yes… that is the regressive understanding of baptism. It appears that he has deflected the meaning to inclusion or membership.

      • Les Prouty says

        Adam, that’s interesting seeing that all PCA churches receive as members those who have been immersed. Did he say they would not receive a preciously immersed person who had a credible profession of faith? If so, he was or is in error.

        • Adam Blosser says

          I did not ask that question. He was quite clear that immersion is not valid baptism though.

  5. Tarheel says

    Intersting article, Bart. I like how careful distinction between Baptist and baptist is made in the article.

    Perhaps his strategy might be to not allow the baptism issue to be an obstacle to membership in his church (I disagree with him on that) and then by his teaching and relationship “lead the horse to water”? After all, teaching that changes hearts and minds comes in the context of relationships, does it not? I know a guy who is baptist in his theology and pastors in the E Free denomination and that’s what he does.

    I think Keynes is being thoughtful in how he deals with this – I disagree with his conclusions (I don’t think membership should be extended to those not baptized by immersion as believers, which is a major reason that I’m a Baptist) – but I do like the spirit he conveys in the article.

    Keynes is not a Baptist, so with him a baptist theologically and pastoring in a denomination that is not tightly linked to exclusive believers baptism by immersion obviously presents issues….I think he’s trying to share how he deals with that tension.

    • Chris Johnson says

      Brother Tarheel,

      I think you are right about the article. It does appear to be more of a “when do I become a member” than what the meaning of baptism is….at least in the article.

      The tension seems to be on emotion and how to explain to a child in what way he or she is part of the church body. Baptists never tell their children that they are not in the body proper, while the PCA would use baptism to make the case. Using baptism to make this type of statement tends toward error though, since the Holy Spirit is the key to understanding the “why” be baptized question.

      The Catholic tradition is probably the reason for the PCA practice of infant baptism; although the doctrines of salvation are polar opposites when you compare the PCA with the Catholic; since Catholic is heretical, based upon a belief that baptism itself is the door (indelible ink) to salvation.

      So, I think it is more about announcing membership.

      Blessings,
      Chris

  6. Bob Browning says

    For any who haven’t read Fred Malone’s EXCELLENT book on this subject, “The Baptism of Disciples Alone”, then I would highly recommend it. If I remember correctly, Fred was previously a PCA minister until the discussion of paedocommunion forced him to reassess his stance. He basically takes the Presbyterian assertion that paedobaptism is taught by “good and necessary inference” and turns it against itself to show that it is neither good nor necessary. He also points out that Presbyterians are essentially undermining the Regulative Principle by allowing a sacrament to be defined without clear explicit command.

    Again, I HIGHLY commend this resource to all for a very good treatment on what Baptists should believe about baptism.

    • Les Prouty says

      Bob, that is indeed a very good book. I highly recommend it though I disagree with his conclusions.

      One thing on the RPW, I’m happy to see it referred to on a Baptist blog. But I don’t think paedobaptism undermines the RPW since it is the sacrament that is part of worship, not the particular mode and since paedos see children as members of the visible church and thus worthy of the sign, no issue with the RPW.

      Blessings.

      • Bob Browning says

        Thanks for the feedback Les. Maybe you and Bart should do a blog discussion of Malone’s book. :D

        I personally would love to see more Baptists come to appreciate the RPW – unfortunately, most in my experience don’t even know what it is.

        • says

          Bob, I think maybe we (Baptists) went from believing, understanding and following the Regulative Principle (e.g. London & Philadelphia confessions), to following but not understanding the Regulative Principle, to not following the Regulative Principle because we didn’t understand it.

  7. Andy Williams says

    “If you are an unbaptized disciple and I make no effort to baptize you, that’s neither kindness, nor humility, nor generosity; it is simply disobedience.”

    This statement on its own is exactly right. I think, however, that applying it to those baptized as infants is going to far to accuse them of simple disobedience. I think this pastor’s approach is very valid given the historical and theological arguments that exist for infant baptism. Here are 3 reasons I think this is a valid option (ie, I also have no problem with Baptist churches that DO require immersion as a believer).

    1. There are plenty of other areas that Baptist churches (mine at least) are willing to allow disagreement with for joining members. We will allow former Nazarines to join, even those who still believe they can lose their salvation. We allow Calvinists and Arminians to join. We allow egalatarians to join (but don’t make them pastors). We in many areas want to say to a person, “You don’t agree with everything our church believes in, but you believe the Gospel, you are earnestly trying to obey God to the best of your understanding, we don’t want to exclude you from church membership over something that doesn’t exclude you from Christianity.

    2. In some areas, there may be presbyterian believers who come out of liberal PCUSA churches, and can only find real bible teaching at a baptist church. I seen to problem with conceding freedom to some of those churches to admit these people as members, even if they are still convinced that their infant baptism was valid. This might be even more the case in remote missionary areas, or in the near future if persecution picks up in America. True believers will gather with whoever they can find.

    3. If a life-long Baptist approached us for church membership, with firm belief that they were validly immersed earlier in life as a true believer….but we found some reason to question the validity of that baptism (some sin or period of lapse in the intervening years, some misunderstanding of the circumstances surrounding the baptism, etc) ….Would we immediately dismiss them, and insist on a new baptism…or would we want to dig deep and determine why they feel so strongly that their baptism was valid…and if we cannot convince them…would we let them join our church anyway?

    • Bob Browning says

      Andy,

      Just curious if you’ve read Malone’s book that I mentioned above? He makes a pretty good case for taking the sacraments more seriously. Interestingly, he basically argues that reformed baptists who join PCA churches over a gospel-proclaiming “traditionalist” baptist church are doing more harm than good, because they’re ultimately elevating Calvinism above the sacraments (or ordinances if you prefer).

      This is important, because I think your first point is the only one that seems to hold much weight. But once we face the fact that a sacrament instituted by our Lord should carry more weight than our man-made theological systems, we can no longer use the fact that we have Arminians and Calvinists coexisting in the same church as grounds for allowing paedobaptism.

      Your second point then is entirely pragmatic and assumes that there is no biblical grounds for requiring credobaptism. I would argue that it’s much safer to guard the gate and allow those that truly want to enter into covenantal church membership be required to submit to believer’s baptism.

      Your third point is misleading because here you are equating what really is a gray area with an issue that should be black and white. The issue of whether someone baptized when they were younger but then fell away needs to be (re)baptized is a complex issue and must be handled with great care and spiritual discernment. On the other hand, I believe the Scriptures clearly show that there is no room for anyone to be baptized except disciples of Jesus. Therefore, it is misdirecting the discussion to try to equate these two very distinct situations.

      The crux of the discussion is that either the Bible teaches that only disciples should be baptized or it does not. There’s no middle position on that, and that is the issue. We don’t need to get sidetracked from the real issue. So once you settle that, there’s no grounds to deviate from it because it is commanded by God.

      All that said, if someone really doesn’t feel the Bible is clear on the issue, then that is a different story, and I would definitely extend grace and patience to anyone that’s not convinced in their own mind.

      • says

        Bob, you write, “…if someone really doesn’t feel the Bible is clear on the issue, then that is a different story…”

        I think that is a good point to meditate on. Don’t we assume that most people who are Baptists believe that the Bible is clear on baptism of believers by immersion being the way commanded and practiced in the Bible? Apparently that is an assumption no longer true.

        • Bob Browning says

          Robert V.,

          Just to clarify, I hope I didn’t imply that I don’t think the Bible is clear on the issue, but rather that I do see where there is room for us to show grace and patience with one another as we work through such weighty issues. I wanted to clear that up, as I wasn’t sure if we were on the same page.

          Also, regarding not all Baptists believing the issue is clear, I would point out that there seem to be a lot of folks following John Piper’s lead. This is usually good, but unfortunately, I think on the issue of baptism he dropped the ball. Unless he recently changed his position, my understanding was that he and the elders at Bethlehem had decided to allow paedobaptists to join but that they couldn’t be elders. This is HIGHLY problematic in my opinion because this creates a second-tier system where not all believers are equally baptized in your church. I understand Piper’s desire for unity but I fear that he may have done more harm than good by taking such a loose view of the sacraments.

          • Adam Blosser says

            You are correct on what Piper and the elders at Bethlehem decided. However, the congregation did not go along with the plan.

          • Bob Browning says

            Thanks for sharing that Adam. I had read Piper’s view on it and I’ve heard a number of people cite that as their justification for their own position, but I had not heard that Bethlehem didn’t approve it. That’s a fairly important detail that seems to be conveniently left out by those wanting to use that as justification.

          • Tarheel says

            Adam is an expert on Piper….

            In fact I think it is Piper’s manuscripts that he uses….

            Nevermind.

          • says

            Hi, Bob. I want to let you know I didn’t take it that way. And I have no problem with extending grace and to those not convince on the issue.

            On the other hand, I don’t (or at least used to not) expect Baptists to be unclear on the issue. Neither would I extend church membership to those who are so unclear as to not obey the command.

        • Bob Browning says

          Robert V., it sounds like we are on the same page. Thanks for the discussion and clarification.

      • Andy says

        A few replies:

        1. On Reformed Baptists joining PCA churches. I agree, it is generally not a good thing. I had friends at SBTS who talked about becoming Presby… “Except for the paedobaptism.” In my experience those people were those who weren’t going to be happy with any church they joined…sort of a “grass is greener” syndrome.

        2. On Baptism being a Sacrament, not just a doctrine: I would argue that it is not a Sacrament so much as an ordinance. A slight difference, but a significant one…a distinction that helps us remember that correct baptisms and correct communion does not contribute to our salvation.

        3. On pragmatism: While I am fine and good with my own church requiring immersion of believers for membership…it does not bother me that some pastors are re-thinking this issue…and in fact am glad it is happening. Whether it is pragmatic or not, For me it is not difficult to imagine a scenario in which there is one Bible-believing church in a certain area, in which believers from different backgrounds would want to gather. While forming 2 churches might be the best solution…I’m willing consider that it also might not.

        • says

          Andy, I really appreciate all your comments on this subject. One additional point on this,

          “2. On Baptism being a Sacrament, not just a doctrine: I would argue that it is not a Sacrament so much as an ordinance. A slight difference, but a significant one…a distinction that helps us remember that correct baptisms and correct communion does not contribute to our salvation.”

          I think is true that believing baptism is a sacrament does not necessarily mean one associates it with contributing to our salvation. Of course the RC church does that. But Presbyterians for example do see baptism and the Lord’s supper as sacraments and ordinances, but neither contributing not one iota to salvation.

          From Theopedia:

          “A sacrament is a rite or ceremony instituted by Jesus, and observed by the church as a means of or visible sign of grace. The English word sacrament is from the Latin sacramentum, which means to make holy, or to consecrate.

          Sacraments are ceremonial in nature, which separates them from other things that Jesus instructed believers to do (e.g. “go and make disciples of all nations,” Matthew 28:18). ”

          Thanks brother.

        • Bob Browning says

          Andy,

          So according to your definition of sacraments, are all Presbyterians adding something to God’s work of salvation? I’m having a hard time believing that’s what you mean, but if that’s not what you’re saying then I’m not sure you’re using the word the same way I am (or the way Presbyterians and Reformed Baptists do). I’d like to hear you clarify what you think a sacrament is, as opposed to an ordinance.

          Les also made some good points along these same lines, that I would agree with, so I’d like to know if you’re defining sacrament differently than Les. Because if you are, then I think you’re talking about something entirely different and the distinction you are asserting is there is really not.

          I could just be misreading you though, so I’m trying to avoid making too much out of what you said until you’ve had a chance to flesh out what you really mean.

          Grace and peace.

          • Andy says

            Bob & Les,

            I realized when I wrote my post that there are of course those who use the word sacrament entirely appropriate way that does not add to the Gospel, and perhaps I was generalizing too much. In most Baptist circles, I think the reason we use ordinance is to make that distinction over and against the way we see the Roman Catholic church using “sacraments”. It is, likely, an over-reaction.

            I was simply surprised to hear Baptists (I think) using the word sacrament, especially those who were at the same time elevating mode of Baptism a bit higher than I would (not that it’s not important).

            So I guess what I was reacting against, or warning against, was the use of the “high-church” language of “sacrament” as a “I win” tool… ie: “Look, Baptism is a SACRAMENT, so we can’t re-think anything about it, or how we relate our churches to believers who have different understandings of it…You can’t mess with a SACRAMENT.” (And I’m not saying that was their intent)

        • Christiane says

          it is not a slight difference . . . sacraments are very different from ordinances

    • Bart Barber says

      Andy, the entire point of the original post is that baptism is different from mere disagreement. The difference it that Jesus has commanded our church in the Great Commission to baptize unbaptized disciples. Now, if there’s a commandment in the scripture for me to alter someone’s errant soteriology or die trying, I haven’t found it.

      Yes, there are occasions when believers can simply say, “You obey scripture as you understand it; I’ll obey scripture as I understand it,” and just leave things at that. Baptism is not one of those things, because I cannot obey scripture as I understand it without seeking to baptize the unbaptized believer who is seeking to come under my pastoral care.

      • Tarheel says

        “Baptism is not one of those things, because I cannot obey scripture as I understand it without seeking to baptize the unbaptized believer who is seeking to come under my pastoral care.”

        I agree. The money words here are “seeking to come under my pastoral care.” We all should stand firm on what we believe in this regard and preserve it within our church and denomination….but –

        Do we ourselves potentially err if we contend that other denominations who believe and practice differently are not acting legitimately?

        Can it not be as you referenced “You obey scripture as you understand it; I’ll obey scripture as I understand it,” as it relates to other brothers and sisters in Christ outside of our local churches and denomination? (Am I asking that clearly)

  8. Dave Miller says

    A little “behind the scenes” stuff. Our contributors save their posts as drafts and then when they are done and ready to go, they “save as pending” and I know it is ready to go.

    When I opened the list of posts and saw one from Bart “Pending Review” I was glad – there haven’t been a lot of posts recently, a sort of post SBC lull. But when I saw the length of the article I thought something must have happened.

    A post that short must be a mistake!

    Fortunately, his note to Wes Kenney cleared the confusion.

    • volfan007 says

      I, too, was shocked to see something so short from Bart. I thought that maybe he accidently hit the publish button, and left the office for some reason.

      Bart, are you okay? Do we need to call your wife, or secretary, and have them check on you?

      David :)

  9. volfan007 says

    That any Baptist would even consider accepting sprinkling or pouring as a valid baptism just makes me smh, and sit back in my chair. But, for any Baptist to say that infant baptism is acceptable makes me want to get up out of my chair….walk out my door….get in my truck….and go to Sonic and get a cherry coke…to make me feel better.

    Good gracious. I just can’t imagine this even being a point of discussion in SBC life.

    David

    • Adam Blosser says

      “But, for any Baptist to say that infant baptism is acceptable makes me want to get up out of my chair….walk out my door….get in my truck….and go to Sonic and get a cherry coke…to make me feel better.”

      This reminds me of an episode of Sanford and Son. Aunt Esther’s husband Woodrow was of course an alcoholic. On one episode after everything someone said he would respond with, “I’ll drink to that,” and would then take a drink. Fred eventually said, “Woodrow, you would drink to an ingrown toenail.” Woodrow was slop drunk and then responded, “To an ingrown toenail,” and took a drink.

      So Vol, it doesn’t take much to make you want a cherry coke. I expect an ingrown toenail would be occasion enough for you. Please don’t take this to suggest that I think you would ever put a drop of “hooch” to your lips. ;)

      • Dave Miller says

        I was glad I sat next to Vol at Cheesecake Factory in Baltimore so that he was not tempted to order any kind of alcohol with dinner. I always try to be a good influence.

        • Tarheel says

          Did anyone ever find out if Dean’s “diet coke” he was drinking when we all arrived was “clean”?

      • John Wylie says

        I love Sanford and Son, I actually have every season on DVD. It’s my favorite sitcom ever. I love when Fred told Aunt Esther, “I’m gonna press your face in cookie dough and make GOrilla cookies!”

        • Tarheel says

          “Lamont, if you don’t shut up – I’ll give you five of these where you sneeze!”

        • Adam Blosser says

          haha…I am afraid I may have just hijacked this thread by invoking Sanford and Son. I will stop after this comment.

          I too own all of the seasons on DVD. My favorite line is also from Fred regarding Aunt Esther. Fred was sitting outside “coordinating” the junk. He picked up a tire and a piece of rope and tied the rope around the tire. He then said to Lamont, “One custom made gorilla swing for your Aunt Esther.”

      • Tarheel says

        OH.MY.GOODNESS.

        Adam’s post gets a belly laugh from me…for a multiplicity of reasons.

        That was funny right there!

  10. CLAllen says

    Once Esther quoted the Bible and said “That’s Matthew.” Fred made a fist and said ” five of these will get you dead, that’s Fred”

  11. Andy says

    I have conversed with enough church-floating believers to have convinced by self that joining with local church body is more important than agreeing with that body on everything. Usually these people are strong Calvinistic Baptists who will not join presbyterians, lutherans, or non-calvinists Baptist churches. In certain areas, that’s all there is…so they attend a certain church for a while but never join, then do the same thing at a different church…all the while wishing out loud for a calvinist baptist church to join. Frankly that breaks my heart.

    Were I ever in their situation, I would look around for a while, but eventually join the best church I could find. Might be Baptist, might be non-denominational, might even be a calvinist presbyterian church…might be a fully arminian wesleyan church (I had some good bible-believing Wesleyan friends growing up). Would I look at Baptist churches first? Yes, but in the end Being a Bible & Gospel-centered congregation would trump almost everything else, including Baptism modes.

    (I bet SBTS doesn’t want me going around saying that as an example of their graduates :-)

    • Bob Browning says

      Andy,

      I strongly agree with you on your points about church membership. I think the point that’s coming out of this discussion centers around the fact that if you’ve got a gospel-believing Free Will Baptist church, or a gospel believing Presbyterian church, our Baptist convictions should press us toward the Baptist church because baptism is an ordinance instituted by God.

      Unfortunately, as you’ve pointed out, there are those who end up throwing church membership under the bus in the name of doctrinal conformity. I find it sad and discouraging that the doctrinal position I hold and cherish is often used to justify divisiveness and a lack of commitment. Those types of “Calvinists” are far more dangerous than any God-honoring, Christ-exalting Traditionalist will ever be.

      • Andy says

        “…if you’ve got a gospel-believing Free Will Baptist church, or a gospel believing Presbyterian church, our Baptist convictions should press us toward the Baptist church because baptism is an ordinance instituted by God.”

        I guess part of my argument is that there will always be more issues at play than simply picking either soteriology or baptism mode….MANY MORE. It will never be that simple, because each church will also have many other strengths and weaknesses.

        • Andy says

          This is actually very much connected with my answer on the “Selecting an Entity Head based on Race” issue. We can hypothesize about “equally qualified candidates” of different colors…but the reality is, that will NEVER happen. Each candidate will have multiple strengths and weaknesses, some related to their ethnicity, some not. If those hiring see something like “relating to ethnic minorities” as an important duty of the job, then hiring a minority for the job is not affimative action. It is common sense. If the job is to count money, then the ethnic qualifications become much less important, and you should hire the best counter.

  12. John Wylie says

    Having said everything I’ve said about the subject I will say that because I understand why Presbyterians sprinkle infants, and it is admirable. I have a difficult time criticizing a people who are trying to connect their children with the covenant of God. That doesn’t mean, however, that I would want a Presbyterian church to join our local association.

  13. John Fariss says

    First of all, I believe that immersion is the Biblical mode of baptism, or at least the majority mode (when the Ethiopian eunuch was baptized, was there enough water to immerse him? I don’t know). I practice immersion, and would not present someone for church membership who had been baptized any other way.

    But at the same time, I fear we are focused on a secondary point. As I read both the Bible and historical Baptist documents, what was important to them was what baptism represented. And ‘way back when, especially in the days of early Baptists in the 16 & 1700s, what was important was that it symbolized a conscious decision to follow Christ, rather then a decision made by their parents or others. Hence the importance early Baptists attached to the gathered church, that a church is composed of those old enough to recognize the difference in right and wrong, who have made the decision to unite and follow Christ.

    Have to go now: my wife has a doctor’s appointment, and she wants me there.

    John

    • says

      John, I might not be able to satisfy others re the eunuch of Ethiopia, but certainly find enough to satisfy myself. If only a sprinkle or pouring would do, Philip surely could have found that much water in the “water bottle” the eunuch would have been carrying through such a desert area. I further find it hard to imagine any need for both Philip and the eunuch to go down into the water and come up out of the water for a mere sprinkling.

      • John Wylie says

        Robert,

        I definitely think that you are right about that. There is no need to wade out into water to sprinkle or pour water on the person’s head. Remember the movie from the 70’s “Jesus of Nazareth?”? In it both Jesus and John the Baptist waded out into the Jordan just so John could cup water in his hands and pour it on Jesus’ head. It never made sense to me.

      • Don Johnson says

        It’s also interesting that the Eunuch seemed to know that baptism was by immersion. He was the one who saw the body of water and asked what doth hindered me to be baptized. As Robert pointed out he could have asked to have some water sprinkled or poured on him from the water bottle if he thought that was baptism. Apparently he even as a pagan knew the mode of baptism.

        • John Wylie says

          I agree with you Don on everything except the pagan part. He appears to be a proselytize, and as a proselyte he would have already been familiar with the Jewish form of baptism which was by immersion.

          • Don Johnson says

            John,

            You’re correct. I should have said he comes from a pagan background.

        • Tarheel says

          While I believe that John the baptizer baptized by immersion as the words used seem to indicate that – and the scriptures and imagery symbolized certainly lend itself to immersion as the practice.

          I am not sure how strong that evidence you present about the “water bottle” might be.

          He could have been out of water? Or perhaps he was drinking wine instead. ;-)

          He could have known of the tradition that had been started of using rivers and streams for baptisms, but that alone does not indicate immersion….(this could have simply been because I doubt any of the temples would have been open for apostolic and Christian baptisms of any kind.)

          I think the eunuch story lends itself (taken with the other passages) to be evidence for our position – but I am not sure it is as concrete alone as some might present it.

          • Don Johnson says

            Tarheel,

            I would ask what is the point of them going “down into the water”? If he was sprinkled or had water poured on him, they could have stood on the bank for that.

          • Tarheel says

            Like I said, it lends itself to our conviction…but alone I am not convinced it is conclusive…that story is not exactly filled with all the details.

          • says

            Tarheel, I don’t expect anyone to be convinced by this one example. But my point that there is much here that “lends itself to” immersion, and really nothing that lends itself to sprinkling or pouring (although, if my memory does not fail me, the good commentator Matthew Henry has Philip out in the water sprinkling it over the eunuch’s head). I think the practice of churches/denominations that sprinkle and/or pour is sort of “self-refuting”. None of them (that I know of) go out into the water to perform the ordinance.

      • Chris Johnson says

        Robert,

        I believe you to be correct. I think any scholarly bible student will find the evidence fairly convincing that immersion is the method in view when we read the scriptures. To think otherwise is to be looking beyond the evidence.

        When baptism is extended beyond its effect and significance, then the definition can be anything that anyone needs it to define. That is the problem we see in theological arguments these days.

        Blessings,
        Chris

        • Bart Barber says

          “Of course, baptism in the New Testament was the immersion of believers. After all, the word baptizo means “to dip.”

          – Roman Catholic priest in Senegal a few weeks ago.

          • John Fariss says

            And with all due respect, you all are focusing on the wrong thing. You are all focusing on the mode of baptism, which I already said I have no qualms about, even if a minor question or two. That, I think, illustrates the issue of which I speak: that from about the 19th Century through today, we as Baptists have focused on the mode of baptism over the historical meaning of baptism. We go on and one and on to “prove” that the only acceptable mode is immersion, when to our Baptist forefathers, the important thing was that it symbolized the conscious decision to follow Christ, something that infant baptism–whether by sprinkling, pouring, or even immersion–cannot do. It was what separated them from other groups/churches, with the possible exception of the Anabaptists, whose very name means “re-baptizers” since they too (or perhaps first, and us second) insisted that the acceptable candidates for baptism were those old enough to have made the decision for themselves, even had they been baptized as infants.

            John

          • says

            John, I think one reason we are focusing on immersion here is because it is very relevant to Bart’s initial post.

            If we emphasize immersion to the de-emphasis or exclusion of the believer part — the conscious separation unto Christ — then we are wrong. Surely it is possible to emphasize both, and that we should do.

        • Tarheel says

          “Anabaptists, whose very name means “re-baptizers” since they too (or perhaps first, and us second) insisted that the acceptable candidates for baptism were those old enough to have made the decision for themselves, even had they been baptized as infants.”

          …but didn’t they pour?

          To me the “believers” part of believers baptism by immersion is more a stickler than the mode (although I am pretty dogmatic about that too.)

          (Imagine that…me being dogmatic about something….thankfully you guys all have active imaginations…I am sure you will be able to conjure up that far fetched idea in your minds. ;-) )

    • says

      Tarheel/John

      I cannot believe what you write!! I have a great respect for both of you guys, but this does stretch our friendship. What will you do when you reach the pearly gates and hear heaven’s theme song “I’ll fly Away”:-) :-)

  14. says

    As a church member, i would definitely vote against including anyone as a member who was only baptized as a baby, unless they had agreed to be properly baptized.

    To those who were sprinkled or poured upon as adult believers, I would ask them why they would have a problem being properly baptized?
    It would show their humility, and their desire to be one with my congregation, and to be completely obedient to the Lord.
    I can’t think of a single reason why they should refuse.

    -mike

    • Chris Johnson says

      Brother Mike,

      Not too long ago, I had the privilege of baptizing a former Catholic and two folks that had been sprinkled in the PCA denomination. In all three cases, it did take some time to explain why obedience is important, and why sacramental mysteries are out of place and dangerous to what Christ commanded with respect to baptism. All of the families were loved by our fellowship and made to feel comfortable as they learned the importance of baptism, and over time began to understand how Christ’s command was clear and unambiguous. So, yes, it does take time, patience, love, and willingness to teach the truth.

      It is important to realize that each individual is unique in their background, and understanding of the traditions in which they have lived for years. Patience is critical as we try to share the doctrines that lead to obedience.

      Blessings,
      Chris

  15. Bob Browning says

    Hopefully I’m not repeating anything someone else already said here. But I really liked what I think Fred Malone said about the mode of baptism. He asks the following questions:

    Were the disciples poured in water?
    Were the disciples sprinkled in water?
    Or… were the disciples immersed in water?

    As Piper would say… “I love precision!” :D

  16. David Rogers says

    Bart,

    Though I will probably not make any new observation here that I have not already made in related conversations with you in the past, I will go ahead and check in once again with my thoughts on this–mostly because it helps me to think through and clarify for myself just what I think, and why I think what I do; and, secondarily, to clarify for those who might otherwise misunderstand exactly what I am saying with regard to these issues. I doubt what I say will convince anyone who already is convinced otherwise, but who knows? …

    1. I fully agree with your basic premises. Jesus did indeed command us as His disciples to baptize others as part of the process of making them His disciples. Baptism is an act of obedience for believers, not a ritual for yet-to-be believers. And baptizein literally means “to immerse,” and thus, true baptism is practiced by immersion.

    2. I also agree that in a Baptist church, and in a Baptist association of churches, the teaching and practice of believers baptism by immersion as a requirement of membership and active participation is the best practice.

    3. However, my reasons for coming to that conclusion may well be slightly different than yours and that of a number of commenters here.

    If we are going to make obedience to all of Christ’s commands the strict criterion for whom we admit into fellowship, we must be consistent. I do not believe that the vast majority of Baptist churches are consistent on this point. There are any number of scriptural commands for which a divergence either of interpretation, understanding, or practice is allowed when it comes to church and associational membership.

    Is church discipline a command? Is a consistent lifestyle of evangelism commanded? Is faithful stewardship of resources commanded? etc. etc. Do we disfellowship those who seek to carry out these commands in a manner somewhat differently than the way we feel they should be carried out? What about the Lord’s Supper? Do we disfellowship those who celebrate the Lord’s Supper in ways other than that presented in Scripture (e.g. with a common loaf)? I do not think we can honestly say that as Baptists (or even as Southern Baptists) we have generally been consistent on these matters.

    * as a side point, in my research, I have recently come across information that suggests that Baptists in the US (or at least some of them) used to take common-loaf communion a lot more seriously than we generally do today.

    In spite of all of this, I think it is good practice for self-identified Baptist churches and associations to only admit as participating members those individuals and congregations who believe in and practice believers baptism by immersion. Why? Because not to do so would necessarily muddle our own teaching and practice with regard to this. If we did not do so, we would almost inevitably be forced to violate our own consciences in an effort to accommodate those who believe and practice differently than we do on these points. In addition, discussions (and arguments) on these points in congregations and associations in which different beliefs and practices with regard to baptism coincide will tend to make cooperative ministry (at least in directly related areas) impractical and unproductive.

    I do believe, at the same time, though, that we must be careful to distinguish between those who understand Scripture to teach what we understand Scripture to teach on these matters and deliberately choose to disobey, and those who understand Scripture to teach something different than what we understand and are doing their best to obey Scripture as they understand it. With the latter group, I believe we must continue to maintain fellowship, while not necessarily joining with them in cooperative ministry projects normally taken on by local Baptist congregations and associations. Thus, it would not be best to admit them to church/associational membership.

    However, I believe we should maintain Christian fellowship with them, and demonstrate it by such means as modified open communion and participation in certain interdenominational activities and endeavors.

    In many places, both Baptist associations and interdenominational Evangelical associations co-exist side by side. Many churches are participating members of both simultaneously. I see no problem with this. In the Baptist association, it makes total sense for a strict adherence to a belief and practice of believers baptism by immersion to be a prerequisite for membership and participation. For the Evangelical association, it makes sense for there to be some wiggle room on these points. And, from my perspective, it makes total sense for a Baptist church to simultaneously maintain active membership in both a Baptist association and an interdenominational Evangelical association. In fact, where such an option exists, I believe it to be the best option.

  17. says

    Well, lots of good discussion today. Sorry I missed it. Was at a wake and funeral and with family all day.

    But viewing the comments, I do have a few suggestions regarding trying to persuade people baptized as infants.

    1. Take a couple of humility pills before each encounter.

    2. Drop the obedience/disobedience thing. Try to remember that for example a 26 year old Presbyterian who was baptized as an infant and grew up in the church just may have what he or she thinks is a solid biblical case for his acceptance of the paedo position. Telling him that his whole life has been one big sin and his mama and daddy are big fat sinners who willfully led their children into habitual and perpetual disobedience to God’s crystal clear command of credo immersion…well that is usually not helpful in changing hearts. And given that a good many godly theologians have held the paedo view from early life till age old death, it seems that point #1 would be a good review here.

    2. Make your arguments from solid, scriptural texts that you believe prove the mode and timing. You have such arguments.

    3. Give up using the Great Commission as a proof text for the credo order. Paedos believe and use that verse as a basis for baptizing new converts too. i.e. this verse does not refute also baptizing infants of the converts.

    4. Also think about giving up the line of argument that the Greek word translated “baptize” always means to immerse. It just doesn’t and continuing to argue that weakens your argument.

    5. Be patient and humble. Try not to be so incredulous that any biblically serious person could possibly come to the paedo position. See history for some biblically serious persons who held to the paedo position. Also re read point #1.

    Many blessings brothers.

    • Greg Harvey says

      Thanks Les. I started to make a similar comment and gave up because we SBs literally make a cult out of being better at being offensive to other believers as a matter of burnishing our credentials with our fellow cultists.

      With that said: the meme of belief of human interpretation of Scripture being on the same level as a philosophical commitment to Scripture itself as inerrant is a significant source of unserious debate. Just because I “believe” a specific interpretation doesn’t lend it any particular credence compared to what God actually intended with a passage and, frankly, all more scholarship does is make us more rigid regarding our truth claims. It may or may not make our truth claims more “true”.

      Which implies humility is the most important requirement for biblical scholarship. And secondarily implies ambiguity frequently must be tolerated when Scripture simply cannot be clearly exegeted.

      HOWEVER: any faith tradition should be able to insist on key features of praxology and probably should vigorously defend its own praxological conclusions (as well as the underlying doctrinal conclusions. I largely view Bart’s comments as doing that. Explaining to SBs why generally speaking conservative SB congregations rebaptize believers who have only experienced baptism as a feature of someone else’s profession of faith and not directly because of their own.

    • Bart Barber says

      The “obedience/disobedience” thing is neither mine nor yours to drop. You’ll have to take that up with the Lord.

      Seriously, this is a commandment from Christ. Neither you nor I can rescind it: JESUS COMMANDED THIS. Ambivalence is not in order here.

      • says

        Bart,

        I wasn’t clear. My apologies. I agree that obedience to the command to be baptized is not ours to drop.

        What I meant to convey is dropping the idea that unless is baptized only the way you see it one is living in disobedience to God’s command to be baptized. Now I get that you only see your way as scriptural. But re read my first #2 again and I think you’ll see what I was trying to say in how you go about trying to pursuade the example 26 year old.

    • says

      Les,

      In reference to #4. Can you provide references for your statement. Every definition I have ever read stated that ??????? was “I am immersing” or “I am dipping.”

      From my understanding, the word was not a religious word but a common everyday word that referenced the cleaning of clothes and dishes.

      I understand that you are a presbyterian, so I’m curious as to what you have been taught. I confess fully, I am a Baptist and I listen to Baptist preachers and read Baptist grammarians.

      Thomas A. Magers, II

      • says

        John Calvin wrote, “it is evident that the term baptise means to immerse, and that this was the form used by the primitive Church.”

        Institutes of the Christian Religion, Bk. 4, Chap. 15, Sec. 19.

      • says

        Thomas,

        From my studies, I think it “can” mean immerse but not necessarily always. See the comment I just made to CB on the other post about Hebrews 9:10. In addition, Mark 7:4 comes to mind as does 1 Cor. 10:2. Now I know many Baptists attempt at great length to make this “baptism unto Moses in the cloud or the sea” to mean they were immersed in Moses or the cloud, but that is a bridge too far. Barnes notes:

        “They were baptized “in the cloud” and “in the sea,” and this cannot be understood as a religious rite administered by the hand of man. It is to be remembered that the word “baptism” has two senses – the one referring to the application of water as a religious rite, in whatever mode it is done; and the other the sense of “dedicating, consecrating, initiating into,” or bringing under obligation to. And it is evidently in this latter sense that the word is used here, as denoting that they were devoted to Moses as a leader, they were brought under his laws, they became bound to obey him, they were placed under his protection and guidance by the miraculous interposition of God. This was done by the fact that their passing through the sea, and under the cloud, in this manner, brought them under the authority and direction of Moses as a leader, and was a public recognition of their being his followers, and being bound to obey his laws.”

        and…

        “In the cloud – This cannot be proved to mean that they were enveloped and, as it were, “immersed” in the cloud, for there is no evidence that the cloud thus enveloped them, or that they were immersed in it as a person is in water. The whole account in the Old Testament leads us to suppose that the cloud either passed before them as a pillar, or that it had the same form in the rear of their camp, or that it was suspended over them, and was thus the symbol of the divine protection.”

        Just a couple examples.

      • Les Prouty says

        Thomas I should add that my position is not that the word transliterated baptism can never mean to immerse. My point is that I don’t think it’s true that it always means immerse. I was simply saying that dropping that mantra will help Baptists make their cases once I think it’s easily proved that it doesn’t always mean immerse and one might be taken less seriously if one continues to hd to that argument.

    • says

      Les, you write, “Try not to be so incredulous that any biblically serious person could possibly come to the paedo position.” Not specifically “paedo”, but in reference to sprinkling or pouring I think that those who hold the position often perpetuate this. I’d guess I was in my mid-to-late twenties before I ever heard (actually read) a biblically serious defense of non-immersion baptism. This was in a pamphlet from the Church of God in Christ Mennonite. They advocated pouring and made their case for it (pretty well, I might add, though I don’t agree). Up until that time all the “paedo” folks that I knew seemed to think the mode was unimportant and that whatever was convenient or most common would suffice.

      • Les Prouty says

        Robert,

        You’re right. Most Presbys for instance place much more emphasis on what baptism means rather than the mode that’s why the WCF doesn’t rule out immersion or dipping but just says it’s. It necessary. I so both modes.

        That said, try to talk a Presby into immersion and you’ll find that they actually in practice DO put much emphasis on the mode. Most will do anything to avoid immersion.

        • says

          They’re kind of like Baptists who use musical instruments. Almost all will say that singing a cappella is good and scriptural, but will do almost anything to avoid it. ;-)

          • andy says

            I’m a Baptist, and I think singing with Lots of loud instruments is good and scriptural, but will make a point to have us sing a capella sometimes…but not because I think its more scriptural

  18. says

    Les,
    I imagine you and i will just have to agree to disagree on baptism, but on another note, I never knew Presbyterians counted like that 1.2.2.3.4.5.?

    • says

      Mike, just trying to slip another point into the 5 points. If my numbering ever catches on, we’ll be 6 point Calvinists. :)

      But let me ask you a serious question, are you one who says that the transliterated word we know as baptism always ever means to immerse when used in the NT?

      Les

      • says

        As far as I know, the word baptism means to immerse.
        In Hebrews 9, that same word is used in Mark 7 to speak of washing pots and cups. There is no reason NOT to take it to mean immersion.
        In 1st Cor. 10, the word used there refers to being in a cloud. Though you say there is no proof that they were actually in the cloud, i think that point is moot. The idea that Paul is seeking to get across is not how to define baptism, but to make a point. they weren’t water/baptized in the sea [as we normally think of being immersed in water] either since they crossed on dry ground. But they were in the midst of the sea and cloud.
        Thus they were in some way, immersed in cloud and sea.

        peace,mike

      • says

        Thanks Mike. I’m not expecting to convert you to a non immersionist view. Not at all. I’m just pointing out where I think your arguments can be strengthened. IMHO, the Hebrews 9 passage is clearly referring to OT ceremonial sprinklings. There seems to be no other way to see that section. Here’s what I wrote on the other thread:

        “But what about that Hebrews 9:10 passage talking about various washings (baptisms or baptismois) and explained in verses later with OT reference?
        Hebrews 9:13 – Numbers 19:17-18
        Hebrews 9:19 – Exodus 24:6, 8
        Hebrews 9:21 – Leviticus 8:19; 16:14
        It looks like these OT baptisms were sprinklings. Agree?”
        – See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/a-tough-question-for-biblical-baptists/#comment-247072

        The Mark passage is also a weak one for immersing when washing seems to make more sense. But the cloud? Brother, that one is weakest of all with all due respect. That one is a huge stretch. Immersed standing up?

        Blessings brother.

        • says

          Les,
          Immersion has nothing to do with position [standing, sitting, prone].
          It simply means IN FULLY, from Merriam-Websters online Dictionary:

          : the act of putting someone or something completely in a liquid or the state of being completely in a liquid.
          : complete involvement in some activity or interest.

          As to the Hebrew 9 passages, those weren’t baptisms, they were sprinklings. To baptize is to immerse. To sprinkle is altogether another animal.

          Sprinkle is defined by that same dictionary:

          : to drop or spread small pieces or amounts of something over something
          : to put small drops of liquid on (someone or something)
          : to rain lightly

          peace,
          mike

          • says

            Les,
            So we can visualize the washing of a pot by its being immersed into water.
            We can visualize being immersed in a cloud, and many experience that in the mountains or in a plane.

            The idea that the baptism means a mode of putting water on a subject is artificial and made up.

            Baptism means immersion.

            The one true baptism is when the Holy Spirit immerses us into Christ and the Body.
            Water baptism is a visual symbol of us being dead to the world and alive to Christ and His Body, and is a way for us to profess our faith in Jesus through obedience.

          • says

            Mike,

            Webster is helpful, but not so much for biblical usage. In any case, for the cloud, what you really mean is to be “enveloped.” Webster states “envelope” as “to enclose or enfold completely with or as if with a covering.”

            You said, “As to the Hebrew 9 passages, those weren’t baptisms, they were sprinklings. To baptize is to immerse. To sprinkle is altogether another animal.”

            Look at verse 10 again. “baptisms” is used there to describe what is spelled out below in verses 13, 19 and 21. And, I put the OT references there too. Now this passage doesn’t overturn immersion as valid. But I think what it shows (along with 1 Cor passage) is that the word we transliterate baptism or baptize cannot ALWAYS mean to plunge something or someone under water. That’s all. Do you see the Hebrews 9 connection to the OT ceremonial washings?

          • says

            Les,
            I see where one could make a case slightly.
            First, was there no immersion in the OT?
            If there was, than the very slight case is weakened if not obliterated.

            The question is then are there any immersions or dipping in the OT ceremonies?
            And yes, there are.
            Strongs H2881, tabal, to dip, dip into, to plunge.

            Numbers 19:18
            18 A clean person shall take hyssop and dip it in the water, and sprinkle it on the tent and on all the furnishings and on the persons who were there, and on the one who touched the bone or the one slain or the one dying naturally or the grave.

            Lev. 4:17
            And the priest shall dip [H2881] his finger in some of the blood, and sprinkle it seven times before the LORD, even before the vail.

            If the words were batting and throwing, they are both done by the hands of baseball players, but they are not the same. Though a player could throw a bat, it isn’t batting.

            Dipping/immersion/baptizo is different than sprinkling.
            Just is.
            And always has been.
            Except for hoe some groups of people have confused the issue and passed the confusion down as tradition.

            peace,
            mike

          • says

            Mike you are certainly trying brother. But I’m afraid your baptism always means immerse glasses are skewing your vision. Remember, I have not said that baptism cannot mean immerse nor have I said immersion is invalid as a mode. I immersed 9 people in March in Haiti.

            So you said, “Numbers 19:18 18 A clean person shall take hyssop and dip it in the water, and sprinkle it on the tent and on all the furnishings and on the persons who were there, and on the one who touched the bone or the one slain or the one dying naturally or the grave.”

            First, to dip something such as the leaves of the hyssop plant into anything is not necessarily to totally immerse it. Liken it to dipping the BBQ brush in a bowl of sauce to lather up the brats or chicken. It would be rare for you or me to completely submerge that brush into the sauce. We would stick (dip) it in the sauce and immediately lather up the meat. Same here. It is in no way necessary to submerge the entire hyssop branch and in fact it is a huge stretch to suppose that’s what they did just to get some water on the leaves so they could do the sprinkling.

            Which leads me to second thing. What happened here in the passage? The things or persons needing to be ceremoniously cleansed were sprinkled!! I think you may have swerved intone of the Presby cases for a meaning for NT baptism, taken with other passages.

            Lev. 4:17 And the priest shall dip [H2881] his finger in some of the blood, and sprinkle it seven times before the LORD, even before the vail.”

            Same thing here. Are we to suppose that the priest submerged his finger? Another immersion colored viewpoint.

            But again, Baptists don’t need the Hebrews passage for the Baptist view. My whole point is this: the word transliterated into baptism does not and cannot mean always and forever in the bible to submerge.

            Blessings brother.

          • says

            Les,
            My argument is not against you brother, not personally.
            I am not accusing you of trying to say that baptism does not mean to ever immerse.
            So how many people you immerse has nothing to do with what I am saying.

            Secondly, linguistically, I am not stretching anything since the idea of dipping and immersing are quite similar.
            Meanwhile, the idea of sprinkling is far from dipping or immersing

            Now the word dip in Hebrew that I am looking at, ~tabal~ means to dip, dip into, to plunge.
            And though I am not a linguistics expert, I know that in order to be able to sprinkle much one must get a whole lot of substance on whatever the instrument one is using to sprinkle with.
            Thus one CAN dip without immersing, one can IMMERSE while dipping.

            So how are we to interpret the OT passages where dipping is involved?
            Are we to interpret them as slight dips or immersed dips?

            We have an available resource we can use to aid us: the New T.
            And there the Spirit of God tells us that there was baptizo in the OT.
            Or we could say it like this: The New T says there were immersions in the Old T.

            Les, the problem you have is a dogged determination to interpret the word baptism contrary to its inherent meaning.

            Thus the burden is on you to show why anyone should regard the word as meaning anything but immersion.

            All you have done is show slight linguistic variations [like dip or wash] which in reality are quite in line with the idea in question.

            For example, in Hebrews 9 we see dipping, immersing and sprinkling.
            In the Old T we see dipping and sprinkling, relying on the verses you gave as well as a few others.

            It is natural and right to understand Old T sprinkling corresponding to the New T usage of the word, sprinkling.
            And although not quite a match, but quite close, and since I do not believe there is a Old T word used for immersion but dip, we see a match between Old T dipping and New T. immersion.

            Now, how do you know the took the whole bush, and not a branch and immersed the leaves from that branch into the water? It is a case i do not to prove, but you do, for you want to alter the meaning of dip/OT and immerse/NT to sprinkling. But sprinkling happens AFTER dipping. It is another separate act altogether.

            As to Lev. 4.
            Yes, the priest submerged his finger.

            As to your last point, you are correct, Baptists don’t Heb. 9. But Hebrews 9 makes absolutely NO CASE for anyone to substitute sprinkling for immersion, or sprinkling as a mode of baptism.

            Your contention that it makes the case that baptism doesn’t have to mean immersion/dipping is based on mere and slight possibilities, not on any strong evidence. It is like a small dent on the side of a semi trailer. It leaves the case for immersion intact, and does nothing but hurt the case for sprinkling.

            peace,
            mike

          • says

            Mike, I appreciate your patience with me brother.

            Dipping and immersing may be similar, but they are definitely always the same. I can dip strawberries into chocolate (quite good I might add) by holding the green leafy end of the berry where it was attached to the plant. That is dipping. That is NOT immersing. And of course I agree that dipping not immersing is the same as sprinkling.

            “Now the word dip in Hebrew that I am looking at, ~tabal~ means to dip, dip into, to plunge.” Right. Those are not synonyms but rather different ways one can dip…partially or fully under.

            “So how are we to interpret the OT passages where dipping is involved?
            Are we to interpret them as slight dips or immersed dips?
            We have an available resource we can use to aid us: the New T.
            And there the Spirit of God tells us that there was baptizo in the OT.
            Or we could say it like this: The New T says there were immersions in the Old T.”

            No, it says there were “baptisms.” You have defined “baptisms” as immersions. I am saying the context of Hebrews as referencing these OT passages necessarily tells us that the “various washings” or “various “baptisms (baptisms)” are in fact various sprinklings. Look at the progression in the passage:

            “They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings [baptismois]—external regulations applying until the time of the new order.” V. 10

            “13 The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean.”

            “19 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20 He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.”[e] 21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies.”

            The rest of the passage describes the “various ceremonial washings (baptisms). “baptisms” in v. 10 cannot mean immersions.

            Further, they are called “various” baptisms. Now if this refers to immersions, how can there be “various” immersions? Now for sure there were “various “baptisms” as the passage says. But not different immersions unless of course you want to maintain that verses 13, 19, etc. are immersions. But they’re not. They are sprinklings. And different sprinklings.

            * blood and ashes
            *blood and water and wool
            *blood

            As you can see, these were different of various kinds of baptismois described as sprinklings. “Washings” often translated.

            “Thus the burden is on you to show why anyone should regard the word as meaning anything but immersion.” I think I have. The only reason I can see to call the Hebrews 9:10 word immersions is because one comes to the text already firm in the position that baptismois always means immerse.

            The priest immersed his finger? How do you know? Maybe it was only the tip section.

            “But Hebrews 9 makes absolutely NO CASE for anyone to substitute sprinkling for immersion, or sprinkling as a mode of baptism.”

            My point has been that the word transliterated does not always mean submerge. I have not been trying to make the case for sprinkling as a mode for NT baptism. That’s another discussion.

            Blessings brother.

          • says

            Les,
            We are just having a friendly discussion.
            You said,
            “Dipping and immersing may be similar, but they are definitely always the same. I can dip strawberries into chocolate (quite good I might add) by holding the green leafy end of the berry where it was attached to the plant. That is dipping. That is NOT immersing. And of course I agree that dipping not immersing is the same as sprinkling.”

            Of course, one can dip without immersing. But that is no argument for you at all.
            Because one can dip by immersing. You could use a fork and immerse the strawberry into the chocolate.

            Now it seems that your point, which I must admit, I missed the first time around, is that the sprinklings later on in the chapter point back to the word washings [baptismos] in verse 10, so therefore baptismos does not always mean immerse but can be used for sprinkling.

            Is this your argument?
            If not correct me, otherwise I will proceed based on what I think you are saying.

            First, I think your idea is based more on need than actual exegesis.

            But even if it is the case, the word, which is not baptizo [Strong's 907] but baptismos [Strong's 909], is used in this case, and in every other place in the New T. simply as a general word that includes all types of washing, a word derived from baptizos, which is used exclusively throughout the New T when speaking of baptism.

            Thus the evidence is that when speaking of baptism, baptizo is used. When speaking of washings, baptismos is used.
            This is clearer when we look at Hebrews 6:1-2:

            Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment.

            For we know that New T baptism is never referred to in the plural, washings almost always are.
            Baptismos is washings, not baptism, not necessarily immersion. Thus it could include dipping, pouring, and sprinkling.

            But in understanding that as true, it has no bearing on the other word, baptizo, which is always used to mean immersion.

            peace,
            mike

          • says

            Mike,

            First, I see a typo in the quote you have by me. I should have read,

            ““Dipping and immersing may be similar, but they are definitely NOT always the same. I can dip strawberries into chocolate (quite good I might add) by holding the green leafy end of the berry where it was attached to the plant. That is dipping. That is NOT immersing. And of course I agree that dipping not immersing is the same as sprinkling.”

            “Of course, one can dip without immersing. But that is no argument for you at all. Because one can dip by immersing. You could use a fork and immerse the strawberry into the chocolate.”

            Yes, you could use a fork. Or a toothpick for smaller cut pieces. But for what I described, grab the green stuff and dip (not submerge).

            Anyway, “Now it seems that your point, which I must admit, I missed the first time around, is that the sprinklings later on in the chapter point back to the word washings [baptismos] in verse 10, so therefore baptismos does not always mean immerse but can be used for sprinkling.” Close. My argument is against the notion often stated by my Baptist brethren that any time one sees any form of baptize, verb or in Hebrews noun, it means immerse.

            Now, I’m happy that you acknowledge that some forms derived from baptizo can mean other than immersion. i.e. Hebrews 9:10.

            But wait, you say, “baptizos, which is used exclusively throughout the New T when speaking of baptism.
            Thus the evidence is that when speaking of baptism, baptizo is used.”

            So, when we see baptizo we are to think of immersion? What about Mark 10:39 where we see a verb form of baptizo, baptizomai? The passage says,

            “39And they said to him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized, 40but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”

            Hmmm. Or is Jesus’ suffering an immersion too? I’m guessing this will be like immersion BY clouds and such. And the baptism of the Holy Spirit where they were “immersed” by? the Spirit?

            Anyway, I’m done tonight. Blessings to you my brother.

          • says

            Les,
            In your latest question, how would you define the word?
            I see nothing in the text to assume it means any thing other than to be immersed into the trouble ahead.

  19. says

    What i found interesting is this which I got from Strongs online through the Blue Letter Bible website on word G907, baptiz?:

    This word should not be confused with baptô (911). The clearest example that shows the meaning of baptizo is a text from the Greek poet and physician Nicander, who lived about 200 B.C. It is a recipe for making pickles and is helpful because it uses both words. Nicander says that in order to make a pickle, the vegetable should first be ‘dipped’ (baptô) into boiling water and then ‘baptised’ (baptizô) in the vinegar solution. Both verbs concern the immersing of vegetables in a solution. But the first is temporary. The second, the act of baptising the vegetable, produces a permanent change.

    And since we read “One Lord, one faith, one baptism”, and we also read from Romans 6:
    What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.

    And we read from 1st Cor. 12
    For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ. 13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

    Which baptism is the ONE- water baptism or Spirit baptism?

  20. says

    If water baptism is but a symbol for Spirit baptism, than the one is real and the other is but a symbol.
    If they are the same [spirit baptism occurs at water baptism] then water baptism indeed saves.

  21. Jess says

    Since Baptism symbolizes the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, I always look at Baptism in this light.

    1. Jesus was completely immersed in death. (He died).

    2. Jesus was completely immersed in the tomb. (He was buried).

    3. Jesus was completely immersed, in order to rise. (He was resurrected).

    One cannot accept someone into the Baptist Church without Baptism, but if it makes a person feel better who has but a short time on Earth, surely something can be worked out, After all, that is why God gave us brains. If someone that is in a frail condition wants Baptized, and the family wants it done, do it. Even if it’s water boarding, do it.

  22. Adam Blosser says

    Ann Judson’s words with regard to baptism are priceless.

    On August 23, 1812, Ann Judson wrote, “Mr. J. feels convinced from Scripture, that he has never been baptized, and that he cannot conscientiously administer baptism to infants.”

    She then wrote, “I do not feel myself satisfied on the subject of baptism, having never given it a thorough examination. But I see many difficulties in the Pedobaptist theory, and must acknowledge that the face of Scripture does favor the Baptist sentiments. I intend to persevere in examining the subject, and hope that I shall be disposed to embrace the truth, whatever it may be. It is painfully mortifying to my natural feelings, to think seriously of renouncing a system which I have been taught from infancy to believe and respect. O that the Spirit of God may enlighten and direct my mind – may prevent my retaining an old error, or embracing a new one!”

    Then on September 1, 1812, she wrote, “I have been examining the subject of baptism for some time past, and contrary to my prejudices and my wishes, am compelled to believe, that believer’s baptism alone is found in Scripture. If ever I sought to know the truth; if ever I looked up to the Father of lights; if ever I gave up myself to the inspired word, I have done so during this investigation. And the result is, that, laying aside my former prejudices and systems, and fairly appealing to the Scriptures, I feel convinced that nothing really can be said in favor of infant baptism or sprinkling. We expect soon to be baptized. O may our hearts be prepared for that holy ordinance! And as we are baptized into a profession of Christ, may we put on Christ, and walk worthy of the high vocation wherewith we are called. But in consequence of our performance of this duty, we must make some very painful sacrifices. We must be separated from our dear missionary associates, and labor alone in some isolated spot. We must expect to be treated with contempt, and cast off by many of our American friends….O, our heavenly Father, wilt thou be our friend. Wilt thou protect us, enable us to live to thy glory, and make us useful in some retired part of this eastern world, in leading a few precious souls to embrace that Savior whom we love and desire to serve.”

    The price was high for the Judsons. They knew they would likely lose their financial support from the Congregationalists, having just moved to a far away land. If ever there was a time where you might think it okay for one to neglect his convictions on baptism in favor of the greater good, this would be such an occasion. Yet Ann’s conscience and commitment to the Word would not allow her to waver regarding baptism.

  23. Tarheel says

    Yes, that’s a good quote.

    Is anyone commenting on these baptism posts, except Les of course, a proponent in any way of infant baptism? (Even he has not however made argumentation for it.)

    • Adam Blosser says

      I am not sure I understand your point. While Mrs. Judson addresses infant baptism in particular, she also addresses sprinkling as a mode. I found the quote to be applicable to the discussion regarding baptism and shared it. I also find the Judson’s conversion to Baptist belief and practice to be a compelling story that I figured others might enjoy.

      • Tarheel says

        Yes, it is a good story. I did enjoy reading how in just a week she became convinced of the biblical mode of baptism by immersion – but I just thought I’d point out that no one is arguing for the modes she was convinced against.

        Everyone here that I have seen is arguing for believers baptism – and immersion being the biblical mode – (well Les argues that it is a *a* biblical mode).

        My comments have been over rare and, I believe warranted exception to the mode (the lady who is too frail and sick for immersion) – not the rule of baptism by immersion – and my comments have never been advocating anything other believers baptism.

        • Adam Blosser says

          I think maybe you are reading too much into my post based on the discussion had on the other thread. Go back and read Bart’s initial post on which these comments are posted. My comment makes perfect sense as a response to the post. It was not intended to be a direct response to any comments that have been written on either thread. That is why it was not threaded under any comments. I replied to the initial post, not anyone’s comment.

          • Tarheel says

            LOL.

            Since there are two active discussions on two threads covering the same topic this is causing the arguments and discussions to be somewhat intertwined….in fact I think they are naturally so (intertwined I mean).

            I do not think I am reading too much into it…since your comment did not occur in a vacuum and is applicable to all the discussions going on regarding this matter.

            It just struck me as an argument against arguments not being made…since no one is arguing for what she became convinced against.

            In fact, I don’t think that the article that Bart linked with his OP is making the argument that is so often being argued against in these discussions.

            :-)

    • says

      I think Les is seeking first to establish that the word baptism means something other than immerse.
      Then if it can mean something other than immerse, like washings in Hebrews 9, it can also mean to sprinkle.
      Just a guess.

      • Tarheel says

        I think his argument is that it could, and by context does, sometimes mean something other than immerse.

        He has said many time that the word means to immerse…but has also argued that it has other meanings too.

        That is the way I have understood his arguments anyway.

      • says

        Mike, Tarheel is exactly right. I’m arguing that in some instances it CAN in some instances mean other than immersion (as full submersion). And yes, if it can then it may mean sprinkling or pouring. I’m NOT trying to establish sprinkling or pouring as the only way. I’ve said that immersion is a valid interpretation and of course churches which accept sprinkling or pouring also accept those who have been immersed as well as valid.

  24. says

    Les,
    What is the purpose then of using a different word [one other than they use for baptism {in the Greek}] when they speak of washings?

    Here is the way it seems. When, in Greek, they wanted to speak of immersion, they used baptizo or baptisma. When they wanted to speak of washings as it related to ceremonial Old T. or similar they used a different word, baptismos.

    The reason people use different words is so the listeners or readers know more precisely what they are seeking to communicate.

    Take baseball, one can hit the ball, pop up the ball, ground the ball, crush the ball, etc. Different words are used to convey a different idea to the person or people who are listening or reading.

    Likewise, we use dunk, dip, immerse, pour, sprinkle, spray, hose down, drench, and more to speak of ways we use water, or put water on people. In a football game, the players might ~sprinkle~ a cooler of Gatorade on the coach’s head and back when victory is assured? Nope, a different word is used to denote what is happening. A DIFFERENT word, because the word sprinkling does not render the same picture as the reality of the event.

    So when the people of the 1st century wanted to speak of baptism, the act of obedience to the Lord’s command, they used baptizo or baptisma, and at least according to the New T., they never used baptismo, for baptismo meant to wash or to use water in a ceremonial way according to Old T. practices. That is because, in seeking to communicate the reality of what was happening, they chose words that corresponded to that reality. So, at least as the Biblical record describes, when they wanted to speak of immersion, they used baptizo or baptisma, and they used these two words EXCLUSIVELY to describe water baptism. This is because these words communicated the idea they were seeking to get across.

    When they wished to speak of washings or Old T. ceremonial water usage, they used baptismo ONLY. that is because it is that word that best conveyed the idea.

    That these words have the same root and some are derived from the other DOES NOT make them the same word. They were not used the same way in the New T., and therefore they should not be used the same way today.

    peace,
    mike

    • says

      Les,

      To follow up on my previous post.
      They never used the words baptizo or baptisma for washings or ceremonial water usage like sprinkling, because those words conveyed an altogether different meaning. They reserved those words for speaking of the act of obedience to the Lord’s command: water baptism.

      They never used baptismos for that obedience. They never used baptismos for water baptism. So in Hebrews 9, where the Spirit has the author using baptismos to speak of various washings used in the OT, water baptism is not in view.

      Now in Hebrews 9, the author is not comparing Old T. practices of water usage to New T. water baptism. These Old T. practices were symbolically pointing to the purity needed to be a sacrifice for the sins of man, and the purity needed by man to come before a holy God. Thus these point to Jesus Christ.

      And while these things are related, of course, the sprinklings were but a symbolic act, even as baptism is a symbolic act. The Old T. sprinklings were not symbolic acts of New T. symbolic act.

    • says

      Mike, very busy today but got the email that you commented several times. Maybe more later today or tonight. But for now, here are two related things:

      1. Is not baptizmos a cognate of baptizo? Why such an effort when the words in question derive from the same root?

      2. “They never used the words baptizo or baptisma for washings or ceremonial water usage like sprinkling, because those words conveyed an altogether different meaning. They reserved those words for speaking of the act of obedience to the Lord’s command: water baptism.”
      Check your sources again on that last statement or see Mark 10.

      3. In any case, my point all along is to refute what people like CB said on the other post:

      “In every extant document, regardless of genre, the word transliterated as baptize means to immerse.

      The only biblical baptism is by immersion. You brothers and sisters who practice or adhere to any other mode are wrong. It really is that simple.”

      Now once you acknowledge that a form of the word (baptismois) is not immersion then what CB and many other say is, well, not correct.

      Later brother…

      • says

        Les,
        Take your time getting back to me, after all, you and I are having a friendly discussion.

        You asked:
        “1. Is not baptizmos a cognate of baptizo? Why such an effort when the words in question derive from the same root?”

        Yes of course it is a cognate.

        Wikipedia on cognate:

        “In linguistics, cognates are words that have a common etymological origin. This learned term derives from the Latin cognatus (blood relative).[1]
        For example, the English words shirt and skirt are doublets; the former derives from the Old English s?yrte, while the latter is borrowed from Old Norse skyrta, both of which derive from the Proto-Germanic *skurtij?. Additional cognates of the same word in other Germanic languages include the German Schürze and Dutch schort (which both mean “apron”).”

        Now our words shirt and skirt, and even apron all derive from the same word, the same Proto-Germanic word: skutiio.
        Now if our lady folk substituted aprons for skirts while in public, their undies might be showing from the rear.

        Wikipedia again:
        “Cognates do not need to have the same meaning, which may have changed as the languages developed separately. For example, consider English starve and Dutch sterven or German sterben (“to die”); these three words all derive from the same Proto-Germanic root, *sterban? (“die”). English dish and German Tisch (“table”), with their flat surfaces, both come from Latin discus, but it would be a mistake to identify their later meanings.”

        If I ask you to put your food in a dish, wouldn’t I be surprised to turn around and find it right on the table?

        More…
        “Cognate doublets can exist within the same language, with meanings which may be anything from slightly to totally different. For example, English ward and guard (<PIE *wer-, "to perceive, watch out for") are cognates,"

        Now Strong's word #939, we read :
        939. basis bas'-ece from baino (to walk); a pace ("base"), i.e. (by implication) the foot:–foot.

        Some words derived from that word is:
        902. baion bah-ee'-on a diminutive of a derivative probably of the base of 939; a palm twig (as going out far):–branch.
        949. bebaios beb'-ah-yos from the base of 939 (through the idea of basality); stable (literally or figuratively):–firm, of force, stedfast, sure.
        968. bema bay'-ma from the base of 939; a step, i.e. foot-breath; by implication, a rostrum, i.e. a tribunal:–judgment-seat, set (foot) on, throne.
        1041. bomos bo'-mos from the base of 939; properly, a stand, i.e. (specially) an altar:–altar.

        These are in language cognates derived from the same word.
        Do they all have the same meaning? No.
        Can we substitute them one for another and communicate the same idea? No.

        Should we make doctrine by substituting one of these words for another? No.
        They each transmit an idea, so that used in a context they combine with other words to present a greater and/or more complicated idea.

        Your point 2.
        My original comment was made at 1:24 PM.
        I corrected this error of mine at the comment made at 1:44 PM which is now comment 144 but will probably be 145 after I post this.

        Your point 3.
        Les, i am not a guy who judges straight by the letter. Not that CB does, or that CB does not also agree with the following, but I think the Lord judges by the heart that His children have. So those who are in error in practice, but whose hearts are after the Lord, are not sinning in His eyes.
        The Word tells us that sinning is there because the witness of God is there standing against the conscious of men. the Word also tells us that blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute sin.
        And though i strongly believe the proper obedience to the command of baptism is immersion, some can't be immersed while others are confused on what the command entails. I have no reason or place to judge these, instead leaving them to their Lord, who judges all with righteousness and mercy.

        And sometimes, even when faced with the truth of a situation, i suppress it and argue for the lie. Usually it is an internal argument, and I of course lose either way. I lose if i think i win the argument because that results in sin. And i lose if I concede the argument because i have conceded.

        Your last point:
        "Now once you acknowledge that a form of the word (baptismois) is not immersion then what CB and many other say is, well, not correct."

        Please leave CB out of our discussion, if you don't mind.
        I have already shown you that words can be derived from other words and have different meanings.
        In using the term you brought up, cognate, I showed again how that is true.

        Repeating the same defeated argument or at least not addressing my defeaters-to-it is a waste of time.
        Your assertion is that since the word used in Hebrews 9 is a derivative of the word used in other places to mean immersion in those places, that means that the idea of baptism can mean more than just immersion.

        I have showed you by definition, and usage, and context, that your assertion is unfounded.

        peace brother,
        mike

      • says

        Mike,

        Not to be picky, but your correction at the bottom didn’t really address this:

        “2. “They never used the words baptizo or baptisma for washings or ceremonial water usage like sprinkling, because those words conveyed an altogether different meaning. They reserved those words for speaking of the act of obedience to the Lord’s command: water baptism.” Check your sources again on that last statement or see Mark 10.” – See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/baptism-is-commanded/#comment-247258

        Oh, I see. You have widened it to include immersions not with water. It appears to me that baptisma is used in Mark 10:38. Brother it stretches credulity to suggest that the cross is an immersion anything likened to Baptist baptisms. But ok.

        As to cognates, I appreciate all the quotes. I did not mean to suggest that all forms always mean the same thing. Sorry if I implied that. In any case, do some research on the OT passages referenced in Hebrews 9 and see how the OT Sept. translates the word for “dip.”

        There is no getting around really that the Hebrews passage the only point I’ve labored to make. Those OT baptisms were the dipping of the hyssop in the various liquids and the sprinkling of such on the item to be cleansed.

        As to CB, he is but one of many examples of what I pointed out.

        “Repeating the same defeated argument or at least not addressing my defeaters-to-it is a waste of time.”

        If you had defeaters brother I would address them. Thus far the only thing I have sought to prove you have not overturned.

        Your assertion is that since the word used in Hebrews 9 is a derivative of the word used in other places to mean immersion in those places, that means that the idea of baptism can mean more than just immersion.”

        Yes, like wash as is used in Heb. 9 and the not “baptizing” before eating in Luke 11:38? Jesus didn’t “baptize?” Obviously He didn’t wash his hands.

        “I have showed you by definition, and usage, and context, that your assertion is unfounded.”

        No so bro. Context in the passages I cite mitigate against your position.

        Now, I’m going to have to bow out. I’ve stated and re stated my position. I have a couple of trips coming up starting in 4 days. Gotta bow out. You get the last word.

        Les

  25. says

    A slight error on my part:
    I said:

    hey never used the words baptizo or baptisma for washings or ceremonial water usage like sprinkling, because those words conveyed an altogether different meaning. They reserved those words for speaking of the act of obedience to the Lord’s command: water baptism. – See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/baptism-is-commanded/#comment-247247

    Actually i should have said they reserved those words for speaking of immersion. i was thinking of the immersion in water baptism, but they also used those words to speak of any type of immersion.