Baptism question.


#1

I was talking with a fellow brother in Christ who was a Protestant and he mentioned that baptism is just a sign for the community.

Well instinctively, I refuted that with several verses.

Then he told me something that really struck me..
No one could of had emission from sin unless Jesus died on the Cross so he would of sent the Holy Spirit.

So if the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost, and people were baptized before that, how did they have a remission from sin? The Holy Spirit was not there.

The Apostles became bishops when the fall of the Spirit came...and so forth... Does this make any sense?


#2

I'm not impressed by his argument at all. According to him, NO believer in Christ who died before Christ did, could ever enter heaven. Nor could any of the OT saints.


#3

It's a very simple argument indeed, showing that your friend ignores some basic facts.

The Baptism of John was for repentance. The Christian Baptism is for forgiveness of sins.

The Acts are very clear:

Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”

They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?”

“John’s baptism,” they replied.

Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.”

On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them

St. Peter clearly shows that the Christian baptism was radically different when he preached:

Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

The Church teaches that the Sacrament of Baptism involves
- Baptism itself ( brings about death to sin and entry into the life of the Most Holy Trinity through configuration to the Paschal mystery of Christ)
- anointing with sacred chrism (signifies the gift of the Holy Spirit to the newly baptized, who has become a Christian, that is, one "anointed" by the Holy Spirit, incorporated into Christ who is anointed priest, prophet, and king).

We also know that Christ clearly stated that to be saved one must be born again of water and spirit:

Amen, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

The very last commandment that our Lord gave us was:

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit

While your Protestant friend may question - due to the incomplete doctrine he has received - the Sacrament of Baptism, it is against the very Scriptures to call it "just a sign".

P.s.: always refer to the Catechism and its shorter version, the very useful Compendium, when answering these questions, since the answers come from the Magisterium.


#4

[quote="R_C, post:3, topic:296382"]
St. Peter clearly shows that the Christian baptism was radically different when he preached:

Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

[/quote]

And he goes on to say, in the next verse,

The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off--for all whom the Lord our God will call. [Acts 2:39]

Anyone who thinks that infant Baptism is not clearly stipulated in the Bible could use a little more Bible study.

But your Baptist friend should be pleased to know that his own Baptism is perfectly valid, even if he doesn't know what it really is.


#5

Oh thanks guys! This clears stuff up very much!!

:)


#6

[quote="JD27076, post:1, topic:296382"]
So if the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost, and people were baptized before that, how did they have a remission from sin? The Holy Spirit was not there.

[/quote]

The Holy Spirit was there because Jesus was there. This is an aspect of what is called "The Divine Economy" (i.e., wherever one person of the Holy Trinity is present, so are the other two).

Furthermore, this person seems to think that the sanctifying grace of Christ was completely unavailable until the Pentecost event. The descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost was to empower, embolden, guide and enlighten the Apostles for the purpose of spreading the Church into the world as a channel of the sanctifying grace of Christ. So in this sense Pentecost, in a manner of speaking, "fulfills" the process of making the grace won at Calvary available for the human race. But exactly why does this person claim or suggest that no one could be benefited by this sanctifying grace prior to Pentecost? I'm not really seeing the point he's trying to make so far.

And even if the Holy Spirit fully empowered the sacrament of Baptism at Pentecost, couldn't post-Pentecost Baptisms be efficacious in anticipation of it? If this person says, "No" then ask him to explain the meaning of the words of Christ to the Good Thief. The way I see it, it is an example of Baptism by Desire. But however this person interprets this event, it is clear that Jesus provided assurances to the Good Thief, assurances that would occur on that very day (i.e., several days prior to Pentecost).

Furthermore, him to provide answers that take into account the Creed's statement that on Holy Saturday Jesus descended to the dead. Exactly what does he think the purpose of that trip was? Did Jesus reveal himself to these people as their salvation but then tell them that they still needed to "hang tight" in the realm of the dead for several more days until Pentecost happened?


#7

[quote="JD27076, post:1, topic:296382"]
I was talking with a fellow brother in Christ who was a Protestant and he mentioned that baptism is just a sign for the community.

Well instinctively, I refuted that with several verses.

Then he told me something that really struck me..
No one could of had emission from sin unless Jesus died on the Cross so he would of sent the Holy Spirit.

So if the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost, and people were baptized before that, how did they have a remission from sin? The Holy Spirit was not there.

The Apostles became bishops when the fall of the Spirit came...and so forth... Does this make any sense?

[/quote]

What R_C said is right to the point, the quote from Jesus to Nichodemous,
"Amen, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the SPIRIT he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."

Jesus was talking specifically about baptism where the water washes away sin to prepare for the Spirit to live within a person's soul. The person becomes the temple of God. In this way, the person becomes initiated into the kingdom of God.

At Pentecost, the disciples received further gifts and strength from the Holy Spirit already abiding in them. This was to prepare them, the church, for their mission in the world, to spread the kingdom of God.

Just a thought.


#8

Scripture is rife with these kinds of quotes. This one contradicts the theory your friend proposed.

1Peter (RSV) 3:21a Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you,


#9

Here’s something I took some time to do several years ago (my comments in italics)…you can see my response to the one which I was writing back then at the challenge to “show me from Scripture.” (oops, 12050 characters, this will be in two posts.)

Matt 3:13-17 (Lk 3:16-22 & Jn 1:26-33) Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. 14John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” 15 But Jesusanswered him, “Let it be so now; for thus it is fitting for us to fulfil all righteousness.” Then he consented. 16 And when Jesus was baptized, he went up immediately from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and alighting on him; 17 and lo, a voice from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” There are several things in here that reflect the requirement for baptism. John in v14 states this clearly that he needed to be baptized by Jesus. In the baptism of Jesus, we see that one receives the Holy Spirit in baptism as is evinced by the Spirit as a dove coming and resting on Jesus. Finally, the Father speaks telling them Jesus is His Son in Whom He is well pleased after he was baptized.

Matt 28:18-20 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” *Jesus commands by the authority He was given (all authority) His closest followers, the 11 apostles, to make disciples by baptizing and teaching them to live a certain way. *

Mk 1:7-8 (Acts 11:16) And he preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the thong of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. 8 I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” The baptism of Jesus will give the Spirit.

Mk 16:15-16 And he said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. The risen Jesus tells them the one who is saved must believe and be baptized. Baptism is required for salvation. One who lacks belief will be condemned.

Acts 2:37-42 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, every one whom the Lord our God calls to him.” 40 And he testified with many other words and exhorted them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls. 42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Clear statement: Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Note there were 3000 added that day when they repented (implies realization or start of belief) were baptized. This passage with v42 proves the practice of the command of Jesus in Mt 28:19-20.

Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. *Again, they heard the good news and were convicted to repent and be baptized.

*Acts 8:14-17 Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, 15 who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit; 16 for it had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit. *They were baptized, the sacrament being completed by the laying on of hands. This is the only example in Scripture where baptism did not directly result in the bestowal of the Spirit because the apostles did not do the baptism/laying on of hands. This reflects the authority Jesus gave to them.
*
Acts 8:36-38 And as they went along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What is to prevent my being baptized?” 37 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. *Baptism again, is required after repentance.
*
Acts 9:18 And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized, *Saul is baptized and renamed only after his baptism showing baptism makes us a new creature.
*
Acts 10:44-48a While Peter was still saying this, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45 And the believers from among the circumcised who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, 47 “Can any one forbid water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. The authority of Peter causes the Spirit to fall on these listening to the good news and they are baptized in following the command of Jesus.

Acts 16: 14b-15a The Lord opened her heart to give heed to what was said by Paul. 15 And when she was baptized, Repentance and baptism.

Acts 16:33 And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their wounds, and he was baptized at once, with all his family. Jailer and his entire household repents and are baptized.


#10

…continued…

Acts 18:8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with all his household; and many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized.
Repentance and baptism once again.

Acts 19:1-6 While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the upper country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. 2 And he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have never even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” 3 And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They said, “Into John’s baptism.” 4 And Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them; and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. This shows the difference between the baptisms of John & Jesus. Again, repent and be baptized.

Acts 22:16 And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’ Repentance and baptism again.

Rom 6:3-9 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the sinful body might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For he who has died is freed from sin. 8 But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him. 9 For we know that Christ being raised from the dead will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. Reflects the power of baptism in which we die and are reborn in Christ.

1 Cor 1:13c Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? *This statement takes for granted that all in the Body of Christ are baptized.

*1 Cor 10:1-3 I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3 and all ate the same supernatural food 4 and all drank the same supernatural drink. For they drank from the supernatural Rock which followed them, and the Rock was Christ. Baptism foreshadowed in the OT.

1 Cor 12:13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body – Jews or Greeks, slaves or free – and all were made to drink of one Spirit. Paul writes the way we became one body (that of Christ) is through baptism.

Gal 3:27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. *In order to be a part of Christ, one must be baptized.

*Eph 4:4-6 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all. There is one baptism and this baptism is required, else why does Paul list this requirement here? This is validated by Gal 3:27 above.

Col 2:12 and you were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. In baptism we are buried and raised with Christ to new life.

Heb 6:1-2 Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 with instruction about ablutions, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. The elementary doctrine of Christ includes baptism which is a washing.

1 Pet 3:18-22 For Christ also died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit; 19 in which he went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 who formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, during the building of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were saved through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers subject to him. *Noah was saved as through water is a foreshadowing of Peter’s statement that we are saved by baptism through cleansing us from all unrighteousness.

*Eph 5:25-27 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. The washing is an image of baptism and this statement shows that baptism makes the church “without spot or wrinkle or any such thing… holy and without blemish”. This shows that baptism washes one from sin making them pure.

Titus 3:4-7 but when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of deeds done by us in righteousness, but in virtue of his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal in the Holy Spirit, 6 which he poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in hope of eternal life. God saves us through baptism, identified here as the washing of regeneration and renewal in the Holy Spirit through Jesus. We are justified by grace.

There is more than that, but I am out of time. Do not disbelieve, but believe.


#11

[quote="JD27076, post:1, topic:296382"]
I was talking with a fellow brother in Christ who was a Protestant and he mentioned that baptism is just a sign for the community.

Well instinctively, I refuted that with several verses.

Then he told me something that really struck me..
No one could of had emission from sin unless Jesus died on the Cross so he would of sent the Holy Spirit.

So if the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost, and people were baptized before that, how did they have a remission from sin? The Holy Spirit was not there.

The Apostles became bishops when the fall of the Spirit came...and so forth... Does this make any sense?

[/quote]

Now to your question...So if the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost, and people were baptized before that, how did they have a remission from sin? The Holy Spirit was not there.

There were many ECFs who expounded how the Spirit was there at John's baptism of Jesus (as in the text and beyond it), his kinsman, yet he recognizes him as the Christ and not a mere relative. Of course that's obvious. If the question is when Jesus' disciples and John and his disciples baptized, does this person seriously think the Spirit only came after Christ's passion, death and resurrection? We can travel back to the OT to find the Spirit of God involved in the creation, the portion God gave to the 70 elders when Moses' complained the job was too big for him alone, etc, etc.

Yet in the Christian dispensation, it would be proper in terms of time to speak of actions of Christ's disciples after the resurrection (technically after Pentecost). It is made clear in Scripture that the Baptist's baptism was one of repentance, yet even this greatest of prophets points out that Jesus will baptize with the "Holy Spirit and fire."

In light of all this, I really don't understand the point of the objection. Not much of an objection.


#12

that I like the most
The Father looks us like we were His Son
We have put on His Righteousness
I did this when I was an adult

*In order to be a part of Christ, one must be baptized.

Eph 4:4-6 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all. *There is one baptism and this baptism is required, else why does Paul list this requirement here? This is validated by Gal 3:27 above.

Col 2:12 and you were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. In baptism we are buried and raised with Christ to new life.


#13

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