Persons are not to be baptized upon an assumption or presumption, but upon the certainty of God's Word -His covenant and promise to His church (Acts 2:39).
5. Saving faith/believer's baptism -This view believes that only adults may be baptized after making personal confession of saving faith. This belief contradicts the following biblical principles:
Baptism is to be administered to all believers and their
children (their households). The scriptural basis for this truth was established in the ten reasons provided in the previous section of this chapter, i.e., "Who are the proper subjects, or persons, for baptism?"
The church includes outward/visible members as well as inward/visible members. The attempt to administer the initiatory sign of God's covenant and church to only the saved is contrary to Scripture. Circumcised Israel in the Old Testament church did not consist of only regenerated people, nor is the New Testament church presented as a church of only saved persons. Some examples of this truth would include Scripture's mention of tares with the wheat upon the church field until harvest (Matthew 13:24-30), of not all "Israel" being the "true Israel" (Romans 9:6-8), of being a "Jew" outwardly but not inwardly (Romans 2:28-29), of the children of believers being outwardly "holy" or separated (I Corinthians 7:13-14), of unfruitful "sons of Abraham"
(Matthew 3:9-10), of unfruitful trees in the vineyard of the church (Luke 13:6-9), of unfruitful branches attached to the covenant vine (John 15:5-6), of rebellious husbandmen in the church vineyard (Matthew 21 :33-41), and of wise and foolish virgins who carry the same lamp of covenant and church profession (Matthew 25:1-13).
Baptism is to focus upon God's promise and confession, not upon the believer's experience and confession. Baptism is a sign and seal of God's covenant promise, not a testimony of the individual's personal experience of the application of God's promise. Baptism emphasizes God's free and sovereign grace, His one-sided, gracious willingness to establish a covenant relationship with believers and their seed (Genesis 17:7 and Acts 2:39). God's establishment of this relationship is not dependent upon the individual's response to it, but it is freely
Are sacramental seals to be based upon God's Word or .man's word? Why is this important when considering infant or believers only baptism?
When seeking saving grounds for baptism in the person being baptized, how is the presumptive regenerational position overly optomistic, and the believers-only position overly pessimistic?
How do the texts referred to in this paragraph establish the
truth that the New Testament as
well as the Old Testament has an outward
as well as inward aspect?
Is the efficacy (saving application) of baptism bound to the .time of its administration? Why or why not?