Unfortunately but true. They have taken something so special and put it all over the map in a bad way.
How does the Catholic Church “define it”(without checking, at least until you reply).
Saint Paul wrote of the “washing of regeneration” Since when does following an “ordinance” cause regeneration? As well, Paul wrote that Jesus had freed us from ordinances.
Yes. I personally don’t care for the “faith and works thing”. I prefer Paul’s characterization of “faith,working through love”. Saving faith is faith that works. It is a description about the quality of the faith.
Except I would say that it is His grace that causes us to do the works that Christ has ordained before all time, His grace that brings us to will and to do His good pleasure. Our faith mixes with His grace to produce the results which are the fruits that befit repentance.
The question is, WHY is this desire? Surely he did not ordain that people participate in some empty ritual!
This is actually a rather recent innovation to explain “believers baptism”. It has no foundation in history or Scripture. On the contrary, the early church conducted catechesis and baptism in secret, because those caught at it would be executed. When Christianity was outlawed, baptism and everything else went underground, into the catecombs and out into the desert so as to remain private and secret. There was never anything about a “public sign” in the historical or theological record.
It is a modern concoction to try to support the concept that it is an “ordinance”.
The apostles taught definitely not, but then, they also taught that baptism IS what saves, and is the means by which we are united with Christ, and His One Body, the Church, outside of which, there is no salvation.
I wonder if those people who get baptized simply because Jesus commanded it, ever wonder why Jesus commanded it? They don’t seem to care.
Why is baptism the will of Jesus? That is not a question they seem to be interested in. They will agree baptism may be important, but they never say why. Oh, sometimes they say baptism is a public sign of their faith. But that is a man-made reason, the bible doesn’t say that.
Of course for Catholics and the Protestants who are closer to Catholicism, baptism washes away our sins and makes us children of God.
I compare it to the story of the woman who was bleeding. Her faith was “If I can only touch the hem of His garment, I will be healed.” So, she elbowed her way through the crowd, succeeded in touching the hem of Jesus’ garment, power flowed from Him, and she was healed. Jesus said, “Someone touched me!” She 'fessed up, and Jesus said to her, “Your faith has saved you.”
Notice that the woman had faith, but that it wasn’t the mere possession of faith healed her. In the same way, our faith itself does not save us. It wasn’t until she acted upon her faith did she get healed. To be saved, we have to act upon our faith.
However, Jesus did say, “Your faith has saved you,” even though it was the power of Jesus that did it. Now, why could He say that her faith had saved her? Simply as a manner of speaking. Her faith was strong enough to enable her to do the ‘work’ of accessing Jesus in the throng, no small feat. On top of that, she was bleeding and hence ‘unclean’ and not supposed to be touching anyone at all! That’s why Jesus could say her faith saved her because without it she wouldn’t have done what was needed. Hence, her faith was the first link in the chain that saved her.
So, we get baptized not simply to be obeying Jesus, but because baptism is the way Jesus has set it up that our sins be washed away, and we be put in union with Christ. That’s why Jesus commands it. Of course if we do not have faith in Christ, we won’t be baptized, and hence won’t get saved. See Mk 16:16.
thanks – but-- i have found most teachings as presented by most churches “flawed” in the understanding and application – of what the 1st century church did - and what Jesus intended for - baptism–
The writer of “The Epistle to the Messianic Hebrews” challenges the believers to leave behind the foundational principles of faith in Messiah, and to press on to maturity.
Once the foundations of the faith have been laid firmly and the “milk” of the word has strengthened us, it is time for some real meat.
One of the foundations of faith listed in Hebrews is “the doctrine of baptisms” (plural), yet in the Christian world very little is known about baptism.
What is known is filtered through a Greek mind-set and ignorance of the Hebrew practice of the “mikveh” from which “baptism” is loosely translated.
John the Baptist was not a Baptist, nor was his name John—
his name was Yohannan ben Zechariah, the son of an Aaronic priest.
He did not invent some “new thing”, but was performing that of which every Israelite was intimately familiar—yet of which the average Christian is clueless.
He was “mikveh-ing” Israelites in the Jordan River when he first met the promised Messiah, Yahshua.
Every Israelite understood what Yochannan was doing in the Jordan,
but the religious leaders could not understand why he was performing the Mikveh outside of their authorized religious system.
the catholic version – seems to be concerned with-- pouring water 3 times - on the head of the person and saying the “fourmula” be baptised in the Father,the Son, and the Holy Spirit-
But this is really the water baptism of “identification” and
it is after the Baptism of Repentence -
- that “Jesus is supposted to baptise you in the Holy Spirit and with Fire”
The Mikveh - the Doctrine of Baptisms". Once this foundation of the faith is understood, we may then move on to maturity.
The question is actually about whether those faith communities that do not accept sacramental Baptism (and keep in mind that most of them will insist on re-baptizing a Catholic or Orthodox person joining their community.) are actually not following the Word of God on this matter. I have a couple of blog articles that explore it.
some people choose to make a public proclaimation and be water baptised
i am familar with the baptism ceremony back in 1995
Brownsville Revival Baptism Service - Pensacola, FL 11/29/1996
kind of dramatic examples of people being water baptised and with Holy. Spirit impartation
Brownsville was exposed by the local newspaper to be a money scam by its pastor, who plainly told reporters that he did not have to account for what he did with all the money that was being raked in. He has since moved on somewhere else. Texas I heard…
Still, your post does not address the actual issue of the very scriptural teaching of sacramental baptismal regeneration and its salvific efficacy.
And, what is your authority for saying any of this? And, from where did you get that authority?
Very cryptic. I am unable to agree or disagree.
I am reading through your blogs and I appreciate you having posted the links.
Since some of these denominations have emptied the Sacrament of Baptism of its truth, is this not the lawlessness of Matthew 7:21-29? It sure doe look like it.
I believe the catholic church sees baptism as an act that must be performed on an individual in order for that person to be saved, in addition to faith. I see it as something a believer must do, because Jesus commanded it. So I do believe it is necessary in that way, because one who refuses to be baptized is not following Christ. I don’t believe that the act of baptism in itself is regenerating. I personally lean toward baptism as being the christian equivalent of circumcision. “In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism” Col 2:8-15. Circumcision was also not regenerative, but was of high importance and required of the Jews by God.
Catholics and Orthodox Christians (currently 1.5 billion), for 2,000 years have known that God’s grace flows through the Sacraments. Baptism is one of those Sacraments, and is a Sacrament of regeneration, as is the Sacrament of Penance. From John’s baptism of repentance, we see that the two are linked. For those who do not believe in our sinful nature, baptism may appear to do nothing.
Please offer some enlightenment as to why baptism is an ordinance, yet Paul wrote that Christ freed us from ordinances.
In general, yes. We receive the teaching of the Apostles (from Jesus):
"And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16"He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.(Mk 16:15)
But baptism is not “in addition to faith”, rather it is faith expresing itself in obedience. The normative means of salvation given to us by Jesus is to become members of His One Body, the Church, through baptism.
Of course, Jesus can save whoever He wants, however He likes, but this is the instruction He has given us to follow.
Then you are to be commended for your obedience to Christ, despite the fact that you are refusing to accept what the Scriptures say about baptism.
Yes, this is consistent with the Early Church fathers and the NT, where it is equated to circumcision as the entrance rite into the new covenant. I agree, circumcision was not regenerative. Baptism was not either (such as the baptism of John) until Jesus entered the waters of baptism Himself and He joined the Holy Spirt to the baptismal water. The regeneration occurs as a result of the action of the Holy Spirit. The HS is the one who circumcises the heart, without human hands, during the action of baptism.
Baptism saves us by uniting us to Christ n His death and resurrection.
"…when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water. 21Corresponding to that,** baptism now saves you**-- not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience-- through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him.(I Peter 3:21).
The Apostles taught that baptism is the bath, or washing of regeneration:
But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the **washing of regeneration **and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior,…(Titus 3:5)
during which God’s Spirit is infused into the newly reborn person. All of our sins, original and personal, are washed away:
"Peter said to them, "Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (acts 2:38)
In the case of adult baptism, I would go further than simple obedience. Since baptism makes us members of the Body of Christ, there should be a desire, a love in the individual which leads - even compels - them to be baptized.
As to children, the love of the parents toward their God and love of their child should impel them to seek the graces that stem from baptism - since the promise is both to adults and their children (Acts 2:39).
We have as our example Saint Paul who after three days fasting, demanded baptism even before food, once his eyes were opened (Acts 9:18). That is a right relationship with God.
This passage refers to the cleansing by the Holy Spirit. There’s no mention of baptism.
Are you separating what God has joined? Acts 2:38