"Whole Households Were Baptized" ......... *Except for Infants?

On a separate thread, a poster has asked where in the “bible does it say to baptize infants”?

Response: the bible says, multiple times, that “whole households” were baptized. What part of the word “whole” is not clear? Whole excludes infants? The bible doesn’t say that. Does “whole” exclude all females, all first born, anyone under 5’ tall, people born with blue eyes or four toes? No, of course not. None if this is in the text either. “Whole” means “everyone” is included. The word “Whole” defined from Webster:

2: having all its proper parts or components : complete, unmodified
3 a **: constituting the total sum or undiminished entirety : entire
b : each or all of the
4 a :
constituting an undivided unit **: unbroken, uncut

Interesting though that the early church baptized infants without having a bible in hand. How did they know to baptize infants? They did so because Christ taught the apostles to do so himself. Tradition. The church writings are clear that infants were baptized. Scripture is consistent with Tradition and visa versa.

To believe in a delayed baptism is to both believe that Christ was a very poor teacher and to mis-interpret a Catholic book, canonized by the Catholic church. It’s a man-made theology of recent times.

So the question remains… "Where in the bible does it say infants should not be baptized?

you hit the nail on the head. This idea only came up in the 1500 after the reformation with the Anabaptists movement. It is a novel idea and not supported in scripture or by practice in the early Church, Catholic, Orthodox and Coptic Christians. It is from a misinterpretation of scripture when people claimed if it is not in the Bible directly then it is unbiblical. The problem with that is that there are a ton of things that are not mentioned in scripture directly.

The answer…not in a single place. In fact, it is necessary for salvation (see first quote) and the disciples were to baptize all men (see second quotes).

Ioannem 3:5
Respondit Iesus: 'Amen, Amen dico tibi: Nisi quis natus fuerit ex aqua et Spiritu, non potest introire in regnum Dei.

Matthaeum 28:19
Euntes ergo docete OMNES GENTES, baptizantes eos in nomine Ptris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti.

I think it prudent to use Latin when discussing Sacred Scripture, considering protestant bibles are not translated with the aid of the Holy Spirit and it gives you a little more academic credibility.

I’ve also heard people note that circumcision in the OT, as a forerunner of baptism, was done on men and infants alike.

When did it suddenly become unacceptable for infants to be marked with the sign and grace of belonging to God? :thumbsup:

Academic credibility would come from the source languages and not Latin translations of the primary texts. However, more importantly, Christianity is a spiritual pursuit, not an academic one. See verses where those given the word are not always those who are thought of as wise. It’s just one of many paradoxes in the scriptural story of salvation.

In Col. 2:11-12, St. Paul implies that baptism is the circumcision of the Holy Spirit - which strengthens this argument.

Both of ya are correct, but some fundamental protestants try to teach the Catholic how to do things. Don’t do they understand that our Church has been doing this for over 2,000 yrs.

It is both academic and spiritual (See Saint Thomas Aquinas). And individuals who speak, read, or write Latin are given more credibility than those who are monolingual or only speak a modern language. Period. I said that he (or she) would be granted “a little more” academic credibility in my previous post.

It doesn’t, though that isn’t the point. The real issue is what does Baptism do? And who is doing to doing? The fact is that God is baptizing, and offers His grace and the Holy Spirit, and there are no scriptural grounds to deny a child or infant this gift of Grace.

That said, the bolded closes the dialogue, since it impunes those who do not believe in infant, regenerative Baptism in a way that questions, not their belief on the matter, but their faith in God. So, the question doesn’t “remain”, when the question is prefaced by an accusation, that being, the dialogue partner must think Jesus was “a poor teacher”.

My suggestion is to provide evidence from scripture and the Tradition of the historic undivided Church, then ask the question. The fact is, Pork, that you don’t need the bolded to prove this point. :thumbsup:

You took the words right out of my mouth. The problem here boils down to one’s understanding of Baptism as a sacrament. Many faith traditions have completley lost the meaning, or never had it to begin with. Who are we to tell God that he cannot pour out his saving grace upon an infant?

Amen! With God all things are possible!:thumbsup:

A) where in the bible does it say we have to find everything in the bible

B) replacement for curcomsision

Colossians 2:11-12
New International Version (NIV)
11In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh[a] was put off when you were circumcised by** Christ, 12having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

C). Were in the bible does it show someone waiting until the " age of reason"**

As an ex-evangelical christian. We were tought that since the scrtiptures say that we are to believe and be baptized then we need to reach the age of understanding in order to believe. This is also a strict Baptist practice. I think most evangelical churches believe along these lines.

I have just recently had the wonderful pleasure and humbling responsabilaty of having my son Baptised. As my wife was raised in basicaly an athiest household and as a result of an upbringing that avoided all religious education and discussion I now have a range of inlaws with variouse spiritual beliefs, from Budhism to evangelical and a sister in law who has been a Jehovahs Wittness for 20 years.
All those on the Christian spectrum, here I include the Jehovahs Wittness, were against infant baptisem and would not attend.
When explaining that Infant baptism is implicet in the Bible and nowhere in the Bible dose it say it is not to be done, I was met with a barrage of protest. I then went and quated the gospel of Luke chapter 18:15-16. Where Jesus rebukes the disciples for not letting the infants and children be brought to hime for a blessing. To me this is so crystel cear that as the beleivers in the new covenant we are encouraged by Christ himself to bring our children (infants) to him and recieve his blessing. I also quated Luke 9:46-48 where the followers of Christ are arguing over who is the greatest among them and christ takes a child and says “Whom ever recieves this child in my name recieves me”.
It astounds me how people try to construct an argument against infant baptism from the bible, when it is so clear that infant baptism is encouraged by Christ not only because of the sanctifying grace imparted to the child but also because through the childs baptism the parent also participates in the sacrament.
Infant baptism is one of the greatest gifts Christ has given us through the Church, it forms the link from generation to generation it also increases the responsability of the parent and leads the parent to a deeper understanding of the faith in an ongoing journey towards Christ.
People who try to argue from the Bible that infant baptism is wrong are basicaly constucting an argument on the thinnest grounds so that they can say “see we are different from Catholacism” it is blind predudice and uninformed bigotry.

I had my son Baptised on the 6th of January the feast day of the epiphany, the day when the church celibrates the three Magi offering the gifts to Christ and adoring him this is the celebration of Gods new covernant receiving all peoples. A symbolism lost on those in my extended family who would not attend.

P.S. My wife thought it was the most wonderful ceramony she had ever had the privilidge to be a part of and my athiest in laws actualy agreed.

If I am not mistaken this scripture is taken from Peter’s speach in acts on the day of penticost. In context it would appear that Peter is addressing a large crowd of Jewish pilgrams from all parts of the empire and explaining the identity of Christ as the rissen Messiah and when asked by them what they must do in order to be a part of God’s new covernant usherd in by Christ, he then goes on to explain to them they first must beleive that Christ is the rissen Messiah and then be baptised.
This scripture from the very first speach by the infant church to a group of hostile devoute Jews can hardly be used as a justifacation against infant baptism. To consrtuct ones argument against infant baptism from a scripture such as this is grasping at straws.

Yet, curiously, Matthew 28 says: 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, 20teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Baptize first, then teach. :shrug:


This is a great point! and just as there was an extra responsability placed on the disciples when they Baptised to teach and bring converts ino a deeper understanding of the faith, there is a greater responsability placed on his servents in the church when they Baptise and there is a greater responsabilty placed upon us as parents when we have our children baptised to teach them the faith. We as parents who posses the greatest gift ever imparted to the humane race which is the gift of grace through Christ and the ongoing development of this gift through his church have a huge responsability placed on us to ensure that our children have every opportunity to share in this gift as well and that starts at Baptism somewhere around 8 days old.

have you read those passages recently?

well let’s look at Acts 16 first (NIV):

31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. 33 At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. 34 The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household.

Please note that how it starts off with a call to believe and how it ends with an indication that the whole household came to believe (after hearing the word of the Lord preached to all in that household). One doesn’t preach to infants and infants don’t come to believe so, in that case, either there were no infants in that household, or Luke expected his readers to employ common sense and understand that he was only talking about those members of the house who could listen and come to believe. What passage supports your blustering?

Interesting though that the early church baptized infants without having a bible in hand. How did they know to baptize infants? They did so because Christ taught the apostles to do so himself. Tradition. The church writings are clear that infants were baptized. Scripture is consistent with Tradition and visa versa.

the early church in some places had a tradition to delay baptism for as long as possible…to wait until just before death if possible…it wasn’t as if the Traditions of the early church always matched scripture

To believe in a delayed baptism is to both believe that Christ was a very poor teacher and to mis-interpret a Catholic book, canonized by the Catholic church. It’s a man-made theology of recent times.

thanks for sharing your opinion

So the question remains… "Where in the bible does it say infants should not be baptized?

belief typically accompanies baptism…were does it say to baptize w/o belief being present in the one being baptized? Where?

really Jon? you haven’y noticed how the passages tie belief to baptism? it is belief, baptism, teach

Church Fathers had already spoken about and promoted infant Baptism. So there’s no issue here. :thumbsup:


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