Theological Wranglings: Baptism

 

Infant or believers?

Sprinkle, pour, submerge, drown?

Sacrament or ordinance?

Argue till you’re exhausted….

  No Responses to “Theological Wranglings: Baptism”

  1. FIRST!!!

    Get dunked. Dunk ‘em early, dunk ‘em often :smile:

    I’ve been double-dunked. Once as a 10-year-old kid, once as an adult (just to make sure :smile: )

    What can it hurt? Bible says to be Baptized for the remission of sins…OK.

    It doesn’t say “chop off a finger for remission of sins”…thank God.

    Salvation is through Faith/Belief in Jesus Christ as Messiah…and baptism is an expression of that Faith/Belief in the form of obeying the instruction to be baptized.

  2. Michael,
    Excellent idea these theological war rooms!

    Baptism – yeah, do it

  3. Only denominationalists care about these issues…. mostly because they have baptized it in blood the rest of us …. simply want to be IN CHRIST… by baptism into death and raised to walk in the newness of life.

  4. “Only denominationalists care about these issues….”

    Your brush seems a bit broad this evening, Baby D.

  5. I’ve been sprinked by the RC, been slid underwater from one end of a claw foot bath tub to the other in a Jesus freak commune, and dunked “proper” at a baptist church near the university I attended. Came very close to being baptized/chrisimated into the EO with the hope of possibly becoming a monastic.

    Then there is the long list of initial and subsequential laying on of hands for the baptism/refilling by the Holy Spirit, after countless (sometimes weekly!) rededications of my life to the Lord.

    I got very tired. Way too much striving on my part. Always wondering if any of it really “took” and I could sing Blessed Assurance w’o fears & doubts lurking in the corners of my heart. Thinking now that being born again is really much more like how folks over the centuries have described enlightenment.

    Before enlightment ( accepting Jesus), we chop wood and carry water.
    After….we chop wood and carry water. Each day will provide opportunities to make choices that will lead us to the desires of God’s and our true heart, by the leading of the Holy Spirit as we just lean, abide, and learn of Him. For HIS yoke is easy and his burden is light!

    Especially if we really believe that we are now indwelt by the Spirt, and will be led, taught, comforted and protected while sticking close to the Lover of our Soul, in the course of the living of our lives.

    I often regret spending so much time, spinning so many wheels, trying to make sure, in my own effort to become and doing everything others told me I needed to do to become rapture or death ready….. By grace, and grace alone am I ready for anything….present or eternal.

    Long story shorter than it could be: NO MORE DUNKING for me :-)

  6. And yet the scriptures say that thru baptism your sins are forgiven and you are saved. But that involves too much God and not enough me, so people say “oh those are just passages that don’t mean what they say.”

  7. MLD

    ‘not the washing of dirt from the flesh but the appeal to God for a clean heart.’

  8. Babs,
    I think that phrase is speaking directly to those of you in the “get wet for Jesus” club. Getting wet on it’s own does nothing. God all throughout scriptures uses physical means for His spiritual work. Those of us who believe that baptism is the mixing of God’s word with the water is exactly that which makes “the appeal to God for a clean heart.”

    But thanks for proving my point in #6 “so people say oh those are just passages that don’t mean what they say.” ;)

  9. This 5 min video from my favorite Lutheran Pastor Hans Fiene at Lutheran Satire should explain it all ‘once and for all’. :-)

  10. MLD, I watched the video. A creative way to defend the Lutheran position for sure.

    It appears to me to accept the Lutheran position one would have to accept that Salvation “changed” after Jesus came on the Scene.

    Who baptized Noah, Moses, Abraham, David, and the Prophets?

    Then, during the physical life of Jesus…who baptized the Thief on the Cross?

    Jesus confirms that He would see him “in Paradise”.

    I’m pretty sure it’s your position that one can be “Saved” without being Baptized, yet you give the impression that one must be Baptized to be Saved…or that Baptism “does” something…more than obeying another command of God, like “Love your neighbor”, “care for the widow and orphan”, “take communion in remembrance of me”…etc.

    Isn’t Baptism a command similar to those? Aren’t we Saved only by Faith in Jesus Christ the Messiah…and the other commands are expressions of that Salvation through obedience to the commands?

  11. We can only be Baptized, Love our Neighbor, take the Sacraments, Care for the Widow and Orphan, Do it unto the Least of These, Give a Cup of Cold Water….and have it counted as Righteous and not filthy rags…if we are the Elect and Regenerated by God.

    That Regeneration doesn’t come at the moment of Baptism.

    Baptism, apart from Regeneration…is called a bath. ;-)

  12. If you have to be baptized to be saved, I know many Quakers who are burning in hell. I didn’t get baptized until I was 30 years old. That was 12 years after I became a Christian…………..Oh wait, I guess that means its a good thing I didn’t die during those 12 years.

  13. Believe,
    First, it’s not the Lutheran position – it’s the Christian position.

    God has always used physical means to save people. You even believe this – can a person be saved without the spoken or written word? The fact that God came into a physical world, to become a physical person, to die on a physical cross says a lot.

    The Church has always believed that God has used the spoken word, the written word (ink, paper, Kindle) baptism (water and the Lord’s Supper (bread & wine) as the means to receive God’s forgiveness.

    No, one does not need to be baptized to be saved – but that does not take away from the fact that baptism saves.

    A question for you – how do you know that the thief on the cross was not baptized? Jesus along with the disciples and John the B baptized plenty of people – how do you know that the thief was not one of them? I don’t know either way, but you seem to know.

  14. Believe,
    “We can only be Baptized, Love our Neighbor, take the Sacraments,”

    Glad to see that you give them Sacrament status and not just ‘ordinance’ like most evangelicals. ;)

  15. Romans 2:13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.

    Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

    Lord, Lord, was I not Baptized in your name?

    Lord, Lord, did I not feed the widow? Help the poor?

    Lord, Lord, did I not prophesy in your name? Perform miracles?

    How can one “do the will of the Father”…PERFECTLY…which is the Standard?

    We can’t…apart from Faith in Jesus Christ our Messiah. It’s Him. Sola Jesus.

    Baptism cannot “do” anything…as you often say, MLD, “It’s already been done”…

    “Whosoever” and “All” who are Baptized, apart from being Regenerated by God…are taking a bath. The only thing it did for them is get them wet.

    Baptism by a Regenerated Believer is an obedient and Righteous act, because it is done “in Christ”…and it is counted as Righteousness…as Salvation, if you like that term better…akin to “doing the will of my Father” with regards to the other commands to Believers in Scripture…like Love your Neighbor, etc etc etc.

    Am I wrong? How so?

  16. I guess I better remove santa. :smile:

  17. oops

  18. Believe,
    “Baptism, apart from Regeneration…is called a bath.”

    You are 100% correct!!! And I have never seen an evangelical baptism where anything resembling regeneration is taking place.

    Your baptism, if I may be so bold, was probably an obedience thing – something you did for God – not something God did for you. (which is the difference between a sacrament and an ordinance.

  19. “Am I wrong? How so?” Of course you are wrong – otherwise we would not be having this conversation.

    It’s your type of baptism that you are talking about, not my kind. Your baptism is a work just like caring for the orphans and all the other stuff you listed.

    My type of baptism is God being the active party – not me.

  20. MLD said, “can a person be saved without the spoken or written word?”

    Luke 1:15 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born.

    What about John the Baptist?

  21. Bob, HI!! :-)

    My #13 should answer your #12

  22. Ironically, the man who is know as John “THE BAPTIST”…was filled with the Holy Spirit “even before he was born”.

    Can someone be “filled with the Holy Spirit” and be un-Regenerate? Unsaved?

  23. Believe,
    “What about John the Baptist?”
    1.) you don’t know how God spoke to John the B
    2.) But then you are stuck with infants being spiritual individuals from the womb and baptism being VERY important for them.

  24. Wait, Believe, are you actually saying that someone can be saved by God before they know anything? I say that is exactly what happens in infant baptism.

  25. praying that all would love Christ way more than interpretations of the way we are to follow Him . . . even though we desire to do it right . . . and perhaps do so

  26. MLD, what is interesting to me is the Lutheran position that re-defining a work as “receiving something” makes it “not a work”.

    It is Regeneration/Salvation that makes it a Righteous work and not a filthy rag.

    “Faith without works is dead”.

    James 2:20-24 20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless[a]? 21 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,”[b] and he was called God’s friend. 24 You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

  27. MLD, what is interesting to me is the Lutheran position that re-defining a work as “receiving something” makes it “not a work”.

    It is a work.

    Just not ours. It’s God’s work that He freely bestows on us. We don’t do anything at all. What can an infant do? Nothing!

    We think that is the best part of it.

  28. Who commanded Baptism, anyway?

    Jesus (what did he know).

    Our Lord never commanded us to do anything where He wouldn’t be there, actually IN IT, for us…acting, and accomplishing His will.

    I’ll take infant, sprinkling (much safer with infants), and Sacrament (God’s oath of faithfulness…to us)

  29. MLD

    Thanks! 13 does answer the question. We can be friends again! :wink:

    BTW, I finally got around to reading the books by Riddlebarger that you suggested. I really enjoyed the read!

  30. MLD said, “2.) But then you are stuck with infants being spiritual individuals from the womb and baptism being VERY important for them.”

    No more important than an expression of Faith, a work that is Righteous, as obedience to a command given to us…that can only be Righteous if we are Regenerate…because Christ is Righteous.

  31. Bob,
    “BTW, I finally got around to reading the books by Riddlebarger that you suggested. I really enjoyed the read!”

    Well, I guess I will see you in heaven. ;)

    What was that, a year ago you got them?

  32. Steve said, “Just not ours. It’s God’s work that He freely bestows on us. We don’t do anything at all. What can an infant do? Nothing!

    We think that is the best part of it.”

    Some of those babies you are sprinkling are not the Elect. Some of them are. Salvation is truly a Supernatural Work of God…and our works and obedience is an expression of that work, in Faith…and only counted as Righteous if we are the Elect, Regenerated by God.

  33. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

    In this case, the Chicken.

    Grace ALWAYS preceeds faith. That’s what infant baptism underlines.

  34. Anyone can walk away from their Baptism. We admit that.

    Does that make the promise given to them in that Baptism, void? No, the promise is still there and valid.

    Can can save apart from Baptism. We Lutherans say that. But we also know the opposite to be true. He CAN save in Baptism, as well. I have no doubt that there will people in Heaven who never stepped foot in a church after their parents brought them to the font. But God adopted them in their Baptism and never let go of them along the way. Their faith may have been miniscule…but that is enough. It is enough.

  35. For almost a thousand years, almost every single Christian that came down the pike was baptized as an infant, including the Reformers. (and to my knowledge, none of them were re-baptized).

    Luther said (to the Anabaptists), “You mean to tell me that there haven’t been any real Christians in all that time…until now?”

  36. “Wait, Believe, are you actually saying that someone can be saved by God before they know anything? I say that is exactly what happens in infant baptism.”

    I’m not saying it, Scripture is.

    Hey, I’m all for sprinkling the babies. Go for it. Just don’t presume to believe it “Saves” them. The Elect Babies will be Saved, those who aren’t, won’t.

  37. Steve,
    “have no doubt that there will people in Heaven who never stepped foot in a church after their parents brought them to the font. But God adopted them in their Baptism and never let go of them along the way.”

    This is especially true for all those here at the PP who were baptized and raised Lutheran, who say “I wasn’t a Christian until I left the Lutheran church as a teen and got saved at a Harvest Crusade.

    What they don’t realize is that God had them all the time, they were just returning to thier baptism.

  38. “The Elect Babies will be Saved, those who aren’t, won’t.”

    Then you had better tell your pastor to start baptizing the babies so you don’t miss any of the elect. :-)

  39. Steve,
    Did you watch the Lutheran Satire cartoon I posted at #9? Ya gotta see it.

  40. We Lutherans don’t presume on God’s grace, for anyone, including ourselves! Because we know that God is free to save whom He will.

    We also know, however, that God makes promises in Holy Basptism which are good and valid, for all that person’s life.

    I make promises to my children that are always good. If they cut themselves off from me, that is their own doing, not mine.

  41. I just watched the video. Lot’s of good Scripture references for God’s power being in Baptism. But of course, those that war against the grace of God will dismiss those Scripture references in favor of ones that uphold their own actions, over and above God’s.

    This “free-will” stuff is really tough to let go of.

  42. Steve said, “Grace ALWAYS preceeds faith. That’s what infant baptism underlines.”

    Agree wit the “Grace ALWAYS precedes Faith”.

    Your position appears to be that God “can” save some via Infant Baptism…and that those who were “saved” by the means of Infant Baptism…can forfeit or “walk away from their Baptism” which results in Salvation…for “some”.

    Others are Saved differently, according to your position…through different “Means”….correct? As you seem to say that there are “some” who are saved through Faith by different means, correct?

    How can someone “walk away from their Baptism…and Unregenerate themselves? If that which is Born of the Spirit is Spirit, how can flesh unborn that which is necessarily Spirit according to Jesus in John 3?

    When Scripture says this:

    John 10:29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

    Does “no one” mean no one? Does “all” mean all…including the individual?

  43. MLD said, “Then you had better tell your pastor to start baptizing the babies so you don’t miss any of the elect. :smile:

    LOL! :smile: Good form Sir.

  44. i’m trying to visualize the Lutheran approach to the rite of baptism – i am thanking God for Dallas Theological Seminary at the moment . . . ;-)

  45. Ah, Jeffrey…now you’ve done it! Two Lutherans on One Calvinist…I’m putting on my “fighting trousers!!!!” :smile:

    “Dear Sirs, regarding your recent foray”…into the Theology Business in all its array… :smile:

  46. There are other Scriptures that say that faith can be lost. And we know that He cut off the Israelites. He can cut anyone off, if He chooses to do so. I find it hard to imagine how far someone would have to ge before He did that, but the Scriptures bear witness to it.

    How about the parable of the seed and the good soils, rockey soils. There is another Scripture that talks about being lost due to drunkeness and disapation. And what’s all this spiritual warfare about then?

    I do think there are children who disown their parents, and I think that is a possibility where God is concerned. He won’t let go, but He won’t force us to stay if our hearts are made up to leave Him.

  47. That fighting trousers video must be for a younger generation :-)

  48. Steve said, “There are other Scriptures that say that faith can be lost. And we know that He cut off the Israelites. He can cut anyone off, if He chooses to do so.”

    YES! We’re getting close now.

  49. Well, as I said in my #6
    “And yet the scriptures say that thru baptism your sins are forgiven and you are saved. But that involves too much God and not enough me, so people say “oh those are just passages that don’t mean what they say.”

    Every time that baptism (or any of the means of grace) is spoken of, it is somehow tied to forgiveness of sin and salvation. You have to fight against the clear verses to make a case against it.

  50. Close to what?

    God is free. He can save in Baptism and He can save apart from Baptism. But since He commanded that we be Baptized, it is a slam dunk that He wants us to be Baptized and that He saves us in it. 1st Peter “Baptism now save you.” Galatians “Those of you who have been baptized have put on Christ.” etc., etc., etc.

  51. Judas Iscariot…chosen, and then “cut off” so that Scripture / Prophecy could be fulfilled.

    Judas was created to “walk away”…purposed by God to “walk away”.

    John 17:2 While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.

  52. For so many, Baptism is just too darn gracious.

    “Well, what about my “free-will?”, “what about my decision?”, “what about what I have done?”

    Yeah…what about it?

  53. I am not a fan of trading Scriptures back and forth because I am not a biblicist. But just to show you that two can play that game:

    Matthew 7:19-23 – “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”
    Matthew 10:22 – All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.
    Matthew 24:9-13 – “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.”
    Luke 12:46 – The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers.
    Luke 13:6-9 – Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree, planted in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it, but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’ “‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’”
    John 8:31-32 – To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
    John 15:1-6 – “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.”
    Romans 11:20-22 – But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off.
    1 Corinthians 9:27 – No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
    Colossians 1:21-23 – Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation-if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
    1 Timothy 1:18-20 – Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, holding on to faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith. Among them are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme.
    1 Timothy 4:1 – The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.
    Hebrews 3:6 – But Christ is faithful as a son over God’s house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.
    Hebrews 3:12-14 – See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.
    Hebrews 6:4-6 – It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.
    Hebrews 10:26-31 – If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
    2 Peter 2:20-22 – If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.
    2 Peter 3:17 – Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position.
    1 John 2:24 – See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father.
    Revelation 3:5 – He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels.
    Revelation 22:19 – And if anyone takes words away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

  54. Steve said, “God is free. He can save in Baptism and He can save apart from Baptism. But since He commanded that we be Baptized, it is a slam dunk that He wants us to be Baptized and that He saves us in it. 1st Peter “Baptism now save you.” Galatians “Those of you who have been baptized have put on Christ.” etc., etc., etc.”

    God is free. He is Preeminent. He is the Potter, we are the clay. He is the Creator, we are the created. With you there.

    God saves His Elect. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit before he was born.

    Noah was saved without Baptism, without the Gospel being presented in the form it is presented in today, etc etc.

    We are commanded to be Baptized. Yes, agreed. If you mean God saves us in Baptism in a different manner than He saves us in any of the other works that are Righteous only through Faith in Jesus Christ Messiah…then you’ve lost me.

    No matter which “means” God uses to Regenerate a person…before they were born (John the Baptist), direct revelation (Noah, OT prophets, Moses, Abraham, etc), the Witness of Jesus Christ in the Flesh (Thief on the Cross)…or the preaching of the Gospel message (all of us)…it is Faith in Jesus Christ Messiah and “THE” Work on the Cross that does the Saving.

  55. Believe,
    You have no understanding of “the means of grace.” Salvation was won on the cross (although you don’t think it was available to all) – there is no dispute there. The “means of grace (spoken preached word, the written word, baptism and the Lord’s Supper) are the vehicle God has chosen to deliver this forgiveness and salvation to individuals.

  56. Well, God uses Baptism to adopt us. He forgives our sins, and gives us the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:38 (or 3:28 – I get that mixed up sometimes).

    Faith comes by hearing the Bible tells us. Also the Bible tells us that” the Holy Spirit is able to speak to us in sighs too deep for words.”

    So whether a person has that saving faith at the moment of Baptism or whether it comes later on…we don’t know. But we do know that God is doing something in Baptism.
    Romans 6 is VERY clear about that. He puts our old sinful self to death and He raises us. How? In Baptism. It’s right there in black and white.

    But if you’d rather rely on something that you DO, SAY, FEEL, or THINK…then be my guest. I’m not here to hammer you into my side, but to inform you of why I (we Lutherans) believe the way we do on the subject.

  57. LCMS website: “35. By the election of grace we mean this truth, that all those who by the grace of God alone, for Christ’s sake, through the means of grace, are brought to faith, are justified, sanctified, and preserved in faith here in time, that all these have already from eternity been endowed by God with faith, justification, sanctification, and preservation in faith, and this for the same reason, namely, by grace alone, for Christ’s sake, and by way of the means of grace.”

    i know this is a baptism thread, if you baptize your child into the Faith, it’s not all of God, is it?

    i’ve stayed here too long – my brain hurts

  58. God to Noah:

    Build the Ark and be saved.

    God to Abraham:

    Sacrifice your son and be saved.

    God to Moses:

    Go to Pharoah and be saved.

    God to the Thief on the Cross:

    God to Rahab the Prostitute:

    Receive the spies and be saved.

    God to the Disciples:

    Follow me and be saved.

    God to Paul:

    Go to Damascus and be saved.

    God to many of us:

    Repent, believe and be baptized and be saved.

    Salvation is through Faith…and Faith demonstrates itself in Obedience.

    It was always Jesus Christ Messiah, before the creation of the devil, before the creation of man…Salvation is Jesus. God does the saving and requires nothing…not Baptism, not any of the means above…He saved John the Baptist before he was even born, filled him with the Holy Spirit.

  59. MLD said, “The “means of grace (spoken preached word, the written word, baptism and the Lord’s Supper) are the vehicle God has chosen to deliver this forgiveness and salvation to individuals.”

    No.

    It is not a “delivery” vehicle. The grace precedes the action. The “action” is the result of the Regenerative Grace apart from the work. The work validates, is a by-product of the Regenerative Grace that is separate from the “means”.

    Sometimes God doesn’t require any “means” to save His Elect.

    MLD, Steve, what “means” did God use to “Deliver” Grace to John the Baptist? Was his Mom Baptized while he was in the womb…and that did it? ;-)

  60. B.,”Salvation is through Faith…and Faith demonstrates itself in Obedience” amen to that, but only God’s Son, Himself, could do it perfectly – He only asks us to seriously try and try and try again . . .

    just hadda say :D

  61. Em,
    You have it right there is your quote “by the grace of God alone, for Christ’s sake, through the means of grace,”
    By God’s grace alone
    For Christ’s sake
    Through the means of grace – which includes baptism.

  62. Thanks for sharing this Em:

    LCMS website: “35. By the election of grace we mean this truth, that all those who by the grace of God alone, for Christ’s sake, through the means of grace, are brought to faith, are justified, sanctified, and preserved in faith here in time, that all these have already from eternity been endowed by God with faith, justification, sanctification, and preservation in faith, and this for the same reason, namely, by grace alone, for Christ’s sake, and by way of the means of grace.”

    If this statement means it was already destined from eternity past to eternity present to eternity future…and that God uses a variety of means for Faith to be expressed via obedience to His commands, then I agree.

    If it means something outside of that…dunno.

  63. Em, I agree…our “works”…including Baptism, are only Righteous after Regeneration…and Regeneration is true Grace and purely a Supernatural act of God…and its all done “In Christ” who was, is and is Messiah to come…from before the beginning of time, before the foundation of the world, before creation, before the devil, before man, before sin, before the fall…Jesus Is Messiah. Always has been in eternity past, always will be eternity future.

    Jesus was “never” not Messiah. Never. Not at any point in time or eternity.

  64. Believe,
    “MLD, Steve, what “means” did God use to “Deliver” Grace to John the Baptist? Was his Mom Baptized while he was in the womb…and that did it?”

    You have made a grave error. You forget that John the B was an OT person who even though “filled with the Holy Spirit” could have that spirit leave or be taken away.

    What did David say “don’t take the Holy Spirit from me.”

    So, John baptized and I am sure that he did not resist baptism himself.

  65. “Sometimes God doesn’t require any “means” to save His Elect.”

    Can you name the person who was saved without hearing any message about God? Someone who gets to heaven and says “how did that happen, I never heard anything about the boss up here nor have I had any contact with him.”

  66. “Repent, believe and be baptized and be saved.”

    Tell me which of these you did on your own, that God did not do for you as the means of your salvation?

    Surely you don’t think that salvation was “your” work – surely you don’t think believing was “your” work – so why do you think baptism is “your” work?

  67. “Surely you don’t think that salvation was “your” work” OOOPS!

    I meant to say “Surely you don’t think that repentance was “your” work

  68. MLD said, “You have made a grave error. You forget that John the B was an OT person who even though “filled with the Holy Spirit” could have that spirit leave or be taken away.

    John the Baptists position before God and David’s position before God was secure. They were destined to be who they were…they served a specific purpose and were God’s Chosen, His Elect. Neither David, nor John the Baptist could be anything but who they were.

    David’s humanness expressed in the quote you cited is a weak proof text for the point you are trying to make.

  69. MLD, Salvation has not changed from OT to NT. It’s always been Faith in the Messiah to Come, the Messiah in their Presence and the Resurrected Messiah.

  70. MLD – Doesn’t it flow that, as a parent, the best thing I could do for my new infant would be to baptize him or her, and then, put him/her under for a 2nd time until they drowned and went to glory?

    If there was something I could do to assure my kids’ salvation, I would do it – no matter the cost to me. Wouldn’t any Christian?

    By letting them live, I risk them going to hell, correct?

    I ask seriously.

  71. MLD said, ““Sometimes God doesn’t require any “means” to save His Elect.”

    Can you name the person who was saved without hearing any message about God? Someone who gets to heaven and says “how did that happen, I never heard anything about the boss up here nor have I had any contact with him.””

    To clarify, God doesn’t require PHYSICAL means. Regeneration is Supernatural. Not Physical.

  72. AV,
    The same scenario could be placed before you. If children are secured by God until some “age of accountability” why not abort the little tyke and not even wait for a baptism?

    But if you did indeed drown you kid after baptism, I have no doubt they would be secure in heaven.

  73. Believe,
    “To clarify, God doesn’t require PHYSICAL means. Regeneration is Supernatural. Not Physical.”

    So you still avoided the question – name for me the saved person who had no contact with the word? Even the thief on the cross had to listen to Jesus.

  74. The same scenario could be placed before you. If children are secured by God until some “age of accountability” why not abort the little tyke and not even wait for a baptism?
    ——————————————————
    You must have missed my earlier post in the Things I Think on this very subject.

    Where is the Scripture for this view you express above. I know it is taught often, but can we have that certainty?

    Meanwhile, you seem quite certain of your view.

  75. AV,
    I don’t understand your #75

  76. MLD said, “So you still avoided the question – name for me the saved person who had no contact with the word? Even the thief on the cross had to listen to Jesus.”

    Those Aborted Babies you guys are referring to who are the Elect.

  77. AV, did you watch my video? ;)

    To clarify, God doesn’t require PHYSICAL means. Regeneration is Supernatural. Not Physical.

  78. wait, I screwed up my #78

  79. You wrote ‘the same scenario could be placed before me’ – except, I am not 100% convinced I am correct on the age of accountability issue. Not in the least. SO I would never do such a thing.

    YOU are 100% convinced – so you would agree, the best thing to do for a child would be to kill it after baptism, to assure he/she won’t reject that salvation later in life, correct?

  80. the video

  81. By the way, MLD, have you lodged formal protest with the blog host for his attempt to sway the baptism argument with that picture? :)

  82. AV,
    “YOU are 100% convinced – so you would agree, the best thing to do for a child would be to kill it after baptism, to assure he/she won’t reject that salvation later in life, correct?”

    First off, I may be 100% convinced, but that does not mean that I am 100% certain.
    Second, I don’t think that you are any less convinced about the age of accountability than I am my view.

    Also, my view of the life God has given us all saved or not, is much more than just a salvation issue.

  83. What is wrong with the picture. Full immersion (is that the picture?) is a valid form of baptism.

  84. Did man have a “choice” in the matter before the Gospel? Nope. Not if you think about it.

    Were “all” the Israelites “saved” before the Gospel? Nope.

    “No man seeks after God, not one”, etc etc etc.

    God saved some and not others.

    Then we get the Gospel.

    Then all the sudden Salvation is something man can “walk away from”?

    Doesn’t seem man had that “choice” in the OT…unless one believes that all Israelites were born “Chosen” and then if they didn’t do enough sacrifices to cover all their sins…they forfeited their Chosen-ness and “walked away” from their Salvation.

    Not so.

    God chose some amongst the Israelites…some were vessels of mercy, some vessels of wrath.

    God chose some amongst the Gentiles….Rahab the Prostitute is an example….to have mercy on. While many amongst the Gentiles were vessels of wrath.

  85. MLD said, “To clarify, God doesn’t require PHYSICAL means. Regeneration is Supernatural. Not Physical.”

    GLAD YOU’RE COMING AROUND! :smile: ;-)

  86. God has a sense of humor…through His Providence He had MLD goof…so at least he could be right once today :lol: :smile: 8)

  87. Believe,
    That’s why I said I screwed up. I copied your erroneous statement. ;)

  88. MLD, it was God working through Physical Means to show you your error :smile:

  89. Love you bros, got to run. Really enjoy the forum. Glad we’ve got a safe space to wrangle w/o bothering those in the community who don’t like this stuff.

    God bless you guys.

  90. MLD – Please explain the Lutheran view of “The baptism of the Holy Spirit”

    I will be back later to check it out…

  91. these discussions is one of the main reasons i come to PP… i learn A LOT! thanks Michael for setting up these forums to allow the discussion/conversations

  92. grammar police are going to come after me for my incorrect form of ‘be’ used should be ‘are’ one of the main

  93. AV,
    It’s not a big topic in the Lutheran church, at least not in any form as CC understands it.
    But are you suggesting that baptism of the Holy Spirit is a replacement for water baptism? I know groups like the Mid Acts dispensationalists think that water baptism was for the gospel disciples but not after, I think, Acts 11.

    I will work up something.

  94. AV, my understanding is that baptism by/in the holy spirit by non-pentacostals is considered simultaneous with water baptism. Or by some when you are born again, by praying for Jesus to come into your heart (from what my Baptist friends have told me)

  95. The major difference is what is happening at baptism – is God doing something for us or are we doing something for God? I think it is clear that baptism is not just something God told us to do, but He told us so that He can do something to and for us. I said, way at the top of the thread that baptism is not just getting in the water;

    “Those of us who believe that baptism is the mixing of God’s word with the water is exactly that which makes “the appeal to God for a clean heart.”

    So what does Ephesians 5:25b-27 say? “…as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so 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.”

    How did Jesus do this?
    1.) cleansed His church – how did He cleanse? by the washing of water with the word. Oh! that’s what I said above.
    2.) what is the effect of this physical washing with water and the word? Oh! it looks like (a) the church is now spotless and without wrinkle and (b) the church is now holy and (3) without blemish.

    Sure seems like there was quite a transformation carried out by Jesus during an actual physical water baptism.

  96. I’d like to share a pretty good and not too long, audio that has Baptism and the Lutheran understanding of it, as it’s main theme.

    http://theoldadam.wordpress.com/2011/03/04/re-baptism/

    Enjoy.

    G’nite.

  97. AV,
    Re: Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
    I checked out 3 Lutheran sources (1) the Book of Concord,(2) Called to Believe, Teach and Confess, and (3) A Summary of Christian Doctrine, and as I suspected nothing on “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.

    Now if you are referring to passages like Matt 3:11; Mark 1:8 – I think that John the B is describing the difference between his baptism and the way that Jesus ans the NT disciples would baptize – both still water baptism.

    Anne’s #95 addresses it very well. I know that when I first went to CC Riverside in 1981, the baptism of the Holy Spirit was definitely a 2nd blessing and you were to receive something that you did not receive at salvation. I don’t know that they still teach that.

  98. Thanks Steve – I will listen to the podcast now.

  99. MLD, for someone like yourself who is an Amiller and reads zero as literal with regards to Eschatology, it is ironic you read so much literalism into metaphor with regards to Baptism.

    MLD said, “So what does Ephesians 5:25b-27 say? “…as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so 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.””

    You don’t find this passage a tad metaphorical?

  100. Believe,
    I read the literal eschatology passages very literally – look at Matt 25 – Jesus returns and judges the righteous and the unrighteous, and dispatches each to their eternal destinations – OK, I will give you the metaphors sheep and goats.

    Show me something in the Ephesians passage that would indicate that the “water” and the “word” are metaphors? The spot or wrinkle or blemish may be metaphors but I don’t see anything to indicate word and water are.

    If so, what words should replace the metaphors water and word?

  101. I could turn it on you, you take eschatology passages, in a completely symbolic book as literal and wants to symbolize all the clear statements Jesus makes.

  102. The different views on baptism is comical sometimes. Lutherans will accept anyone’s baptism as long as it was trinitarian. RCC, EO, SBC, CC- infant, believers, it doesn’t matter, if you got wet and it was done in the name of the father, the son and the holy spirit, you were good.

    When we went to CC, my wife was told that her Lutheran baptism was invalid and that he needed to be re baptized – so she did (and always regretted it).

    When we went to the SBC, we were told that our CC baptism was invalid and we would need to be baptized by them because they couldn’t trust anyone else’s baptism – we told them no, explained our baptism and they finally received us as members.

  103. Believe: Ephesians 5:25b-27 as metaphor ?????

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/metaphor

    Aborted babies are automatically elect????

    AV @ 71 is indeed a serious question! One that desperate mothers have answered by sending their children to heaven rather than risk them suffering this life anymore or growing up in a hellish world. These moms are considered mentally ill – but there is a string of logic you can recognize them following that is in line with their “faith” at the time of their decision to kill their children. Better heaven than hell on earth and possible hell for eternity if they grow up badly.

  104. “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John” (Revelation 1:1). The word rendered in the NASB here as “communicated” in in Greek ESHMANEN, from a verb which means ‘to show by a sign’. So we have good indication in the first verse that this book is a book of signs. We don’t just go deciding that things are metaphorical because it’s easier.

    I don’t quite follow which parts you are suggesting are metaphorical in Ephesians 5. I’m sure “without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish” are speaking of moral cleansing rather than removal of dirt. But I don’t see this being done without water. As was said above, the water with the Word accomplishes what is being done.

    There is another ditch on the other side of this road as well. If we get too comfortable making things into metaphors, we may lose the Incarnation altogether. After all, a man being God is a difficult idea. Many would find it simpler to think that Jesus just represents God for us. But we believe more than this. The difficulties with the Sacraments are usually paralleled with difficulties others have with the Incarnation. There are more “spiritual” ways these things might have been accomplished. Why get matter all mixed up in it? Well, that appears to be the way it works. (I’m not saying anyone here is advocating falling into this ditch. But the parallels are important to note.)

  105. MLD said, “Show me something in the Ephesians passage that would indicate that the “water” and the “word” are metaphors? The spot or wrinkle or blemish may be metaphors but I don’t see anything to indicate word and water are.”

    Let’s look at the passage:

    25 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 so 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.

    Metaphor #1: Husbands and Wives analogous to Christ and the Church
    Metaphor #2: Sanctification analogous to Washing of Water with the Word
    (you already conceded spot, wrinkle, blemish Metaphor).

    The Word and Water/Baptism don’t “Save”. God Saves via Faith in Jesus Christ Messiah.

  106. I want to clarify that I do not believe aborted babies die and go to hell. Of course, that might just be my univeralism tendencies.

    If you take predestination to its ultimate logic, one could make a case that some are heaven bound some, hell bound according God’s mysterious will and we would be wrong to question God’s right to do whatever he chooses with those he has created whether born or unborn.

    Interesting how our wranglings about baptism have implications and reflections about how we view eschatology, and our theology re: salvation.

  107. MLD said, “so what words should replace the metaphors water and word”

    I’d assert there are lots of words and analogies and metaphors you could replace for the process of Sanctification. Baptism is an outward act of Obedience that signifies the Grace of God in our lives, but is “not” the Grace itself, as you seem to assert:

    Leviticus 8:6 Then Moses brought Aaron and his sons forward and washed them with water.

    Leviticus 16:30 because on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the LORD, you will be clean from all your sins.

    John 3:5 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.

    John 13:10 Jesus answered, “A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.”

    John 15:3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.

    John 17:17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

    Romans 10:8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming:

    1 Corinthians 6:11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

    2 Corinthians 11:2 I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him.

    Ephesians 6:17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

    Titus 2:14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

    Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

    Hebrews 10:10 And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

    Hebrews 10:14 because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

    Hebrews 10:22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.

  108. Hi Rick – thanks for dropping in again :-)
    Your points are well made.

  109. Stuck in mod, lots o’ verse references cited (for G :smile: )

  110. The word rendered in the NASB here as “communicated” in in Greek ESHMANEN, from a verb which means ‘to show by a sign’
    ——————–
    Uh..no.

    From BDAG

    “To make known, report, communicate”
    “Intimate something respecting the future”
    “Provide an explanation for something that is enigmatic”

    Those are the three definitions according to the standard and most respected Greek lexicon used today.

    Likewise, Moulton & Milligan offer no such suggestion from the papyri evidence.

    Nor do the uses of the word in the New Testament elsewhere, as found in a Greek concordance.

  111. Metaphors and analogies are not synonymous.

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/analogy

    Metaphor: Joe is stubborn as a mule. (but not a mule)

    Analogy: The Church is the Bride of Christ. Church = Bride of Christ.

    Understanding these differences may help simplify our debates ;-)

  112. Believe,
    I don’t know how you can say that – look at what Paul says is happening “that he might sanctify her,” – You don’t believe that – you don’t believe that Jesus sanctifies. You believe that you are in full partnership with Jesus in your sanctification.

    I guess this passage blows both your views on baptism and sanctification out of the water.

  113. Rick, valid to point out the ditch…and as you asset there are times to claim Metaphor and times where literal is clearly indicated and or requisite.

    “Washing with water” is not one of those cases.

    There is Scripture, both OT and NT that supports my claim, once it clears moderation.

  114. and as I suspected nothing on “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
    —————————————-
    Well that is sort of pathetic, isn’t it? What do they do with Acts chapters 1 and 2?

    I do not hold the traditional Pentecostal/CC view of the ‘secondary blessing’ either.

    Seriously, does the Lutheran church just ignore the whole topic? Do they think everyone else in the Body of Christ, even with the differences of opinion, are arguing over something that is not Biblical (though Jesus Himself mentioned it, and Peter confirmed it).

    That is just really odd to me MLD…and kind of disappointing you guys don’t have a take.

  115. Dang filter. I’ll piece it out:

    Leviticus 8:6 Then Moses brought Aaron and his sons forward and washed them with water.

    Leviticus 16:30 because on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the LORD, you will be clean from all your sins.

  116. John 13:10 Jesus answered, “A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.”

    John 15:3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.

  117. AV,
    “I do not hold the traditional Pentecostal/CC view of the ‘secondary blessing’ either.”

    So all you are saying is that your ‘denomination’ holds to an incorrect view.

    You speak in categories in which we don;t speak, but you expect a reply in those categories. Just as I tell Michael and other /calvinists when they say where do Lutherans stand on the Calvinist / Arminian debate? I say “those are not our categories.

  118. John 17:17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

    1 Corinthians 6:11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

  119. I love what Luther said about the Anabaptists (forerunners of our Baptists and non-denoms), he said, ‘They look at the Sacraments the same way a cow looks at a new gate.”

    :D

    G’nite Mrs. O’Leary…wherever you are!

  120. AV – the Lutheran take is the only take the church had for centuries. The emphasis of the Acts texts as anything more than what was witnessed specifcally at those events is a fairly recent theological phenomenon.

  121. Hebrews 10:22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.

  122. So far, Believe, all the scriptures you are listing are great examples for the other side of the debate too!

  123. AV,
    “What do they do with Acts chapters 1 and 2?”

    Are you actually saying that the unveiling of the Holy Spirit in Acts 1 & 2 is happening in the same way today? Are you saying that when you preach on Sunday mornings, people see you in the pulpit with ‘tongues of fire’ around you?

    I guess I do not get what you are trying to get at.

    How about this – I will ask you the question you asked me “Please explainyour view of “The baptism of the Holy Spirit”

  124. And I guess I am asking, do you see “the baptism of the Holy Spirit” as something different from the salvation experience?

  125. #121 you could read that as needing to take a bath in filtered water before approaching God.

  126. Anne is on a roll tonight! :-)

  127. So all you are saying is that your ‘denomination’ holds to an incorrect view.
    ————————————————
    No. There is no official view on the baptism of the Spirit in the Distinctives..or else I (and many others) would have to leave the movement.

    As to expecting a reply in some category of which you do not speak…

    Acts 1…repeated in Acts 11…seen in Acts chapter two. They aren’t the categories of CC but rather portions of Scripture. Of course, if one does not teach through the entire Scripture, it is easy to skip parts of it ;)

    Do you know how to define the word, baptism? What the word itself actually means – from the Greek (for it comes from ordinary Greek usage and became ‘Christianized’ as a word)

    Just askin..

  128. Anne, in the context of Literal vs. Allegorical…Metaphor and Analogy, IMO, contrast appropriately with Literal.

    Jesus Christ became a man and died on the cross and rose again = Literal = Foundational Truth.

    Be Baptized for the remission of sins = Analogous to the Sanctification or a Living Physical Metaphor that Symbolizes a Truth about our New Life in Christ = not a Foundational Truth in the Context that one can be wrong on this one and not invalidate the Faith.

    Be Baptized for the remission of sins as Literal = a prerequisite to Regeneration/Salvation/Justification = a necessary pre-condition to Same = Invalidation of a Foundational Truth that Justification is by Faith Alone, that Salvation is through Faith/Belief in Jesus Christ as Messiah, that Regeneration is Supernatural/Spiritual and not Physical.

  129. Anne, the Scripture references, and there are more…go to addressing MLD’s question about what “words” could replace Water and Word as Metaphor.

    The point is Scripture consistently Contextualizes “washing” and “word” through the use of Metaphor for something that is Spiritual and not Physical…something done by the Spirit and not man.

    Again, if one isn’t one of the Elect, one can be Baptized and washed 6 days a week and twice every Sunday…and all they’ll get is really clean…Physically. ;-)

  130. Baptism is akin to the Altar Call. Think about that one…

  131. Analogy = literal A=B
    Metaphor = A is similar to B

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/analogy

    Allegory: A is a symbolic, fictional, representation of B
    Ex. Parable

    I have no idea what you’re trying to say: “Anne, in the context of Literal vs. Allegorical…Metaphor and Analogy, IMO, contrast appropriately with Literal.” ;-)

  132. AV,
    The facts of what happened in Acts are covered in the commentaries – but there is no “Doctrine” of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

    Baptism means to wash.

  133. The altar call is a modern construct and has no scriptural basis. How can it be equal with baptism?

  134. “Believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved”

    “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven”

    “Be Baptized for the remission of sins”

    Go forward at an Altar Call and then get Baptized that day and you will necessarily be saved. Does that statement hold water MLD? ;-)

  135. Believe,
    All you are doing is proving my point – to an evangelical, baptism is an act of an individual and is void of Christ’s presence. Which is no different than your view of the Supper – no Jesus to be found.

  136. Contextualize : to put in context.

    #129 why in the world woud anyone get baptized so many times if they were not seeking the Lord??!!

    Believe, I’m really trying hard to break down your statements in plain english to try and get your points.

  137. As I have said many times, baptism to the evangelical is to identify with Christ and to let the world know that you are a Christian.

    Today in the evangelical church, baptism can be replaced with a bumper sticker. :-)

  138. Only, ONLY those who God has Regenerated (Cart and Horse in the right order) can “believe”, “confess”, and “be baptized” and have it counted as Righteous.

    Others profess belief, confess Jesus before men and get baptized…yet some will hear, “depart from me, I never knew you”.

    And, it’s not that they “forfeited” or “walked away” from their Salvation, as this contradicts too many clear verses in Scripture (save one, thanks Rolph :smile: ) it’s that they are not Chosen, not the Elect.

    The only man who was chosen who fell away was Judas Iscariot, and God Purposed that. Those who are God’s, “no one” can take them out of God’s hand and “all” will be raised up on the last day. “No one” includes the individual…as they are a someone.

  139. “Baptism is akin to the Altar Call. Think about that one…”

    That is idiotic – Jesus never told anyone to do an altar call.

  140. Believe, would you rather have this conversation solely with MLD?

    Or I may be misunderstanding the whole purpose of these pages. Maybe not only to keep the debates and debaters from hijacking other threads but also to be a safe place for you guys to have your own conversations without interruption.

    Please forgive me if I have missunderstood and rudely interrupted your conversation and the purpose of these particular threads.

  141. Anne,
    You are very welcome here.

  142. MLD an Altar Call is the “Means” of Grace, similar to your use of Baptism.

    It is a “profession of belief” and a “confessing Christ before men”.

    Your Baptism = Finney’s Altar Call

  143. Anne, the previous was an Analogy.

    Baptism is not literally an Altar Call…but they are analogous in how MLD is asserting Baptism as a Physical “means” of Grace.

    If MLD’s Baptism is a Physical means of Grace, then Finney’s Altar Call is too.

  144. Believe,
    “Go forward at an Altar Call and then get Baptized that day and you will necessarily be saved. Does that statement hold water MLD?”

    I don’t know about the altar call, but if baptism is God’s work (my position) and not man’s work (your position) then you are saved.

  145. “MLD an Altar Call is the “Means” of Grace, similar to your use of Baptism.”

    You are still showing that you have zero understanding of the means of grace. But most evangelicals don’t understand or reject them because they are God’s work and you have a theology like my 4 yr old grandson “PopPop, I can do it myself!”

  146. MLD said, “I don’t know about the altar call, but if baptism is God’s work (my position) and not man’s work (your position) then you are saved.”

    Same dynamic for an Altar Call, it is a “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven.”

    It is also a “believe on the name of the Lord and you will be saved”.

    So, MLD, do you endorse Altar Calls?

  147. Isn’t an Altar Call this?

    Romans 10:9 That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

    So, just do this and get baptized and your saved, you’ve got your fire insurance, right MLD?

  148. Do you see the point MLD?

    Baptism, that saves, like Belief that saves, like Acknowledging Christ before men that saves, like Confessing with your mouth that saves…is ALL post-Regeneration.

    Each of the things on the list are by-products of the Work Jesus did on the Cross and that which is then Born of the Spirit…God Regenerating His Elect.

  149. All the previous was showing that all the above is equal to what?

    Analogous means they are equal.

    MLD IS saying baptism is or equals the means of saving grace, I think.

    Finney’s altar call has no basis in scripture, thus cannot be analogous to anything biblical.

  150. Believe,
    All you have done on this thread is reduce baptism down to meaning nothing. But I do like how people like you champion an “altar” call and don’t even have an altar in your church.

    You are funny if nothing else. ;)

  151. “You are still showing that you have zero understanding of the means of grace. But most evangelicals don’t understand or reject them because they are God’s work and you have a theology like my 4 yr old grandson “PopPop, I can do it myself!””

    No, I’m saying that your “means of Grace” is in name only. Just like your “walking away” and “forfeiting” one’s Salvation is really a form of Synergism.

  152. Anne sees right through Believe’s nonsense.

  153. MLD, I no more believe “confession” and professing “belief” at an Altar Call saves a person, any more than Baptizing a baby does.

  154. Every time you get whipped in these conversations, you call people synergists.

  155. God saves, not man. The Regenerate man will profess belief, will confess/acknowledge Christ before man..and may even get baptized…but none of those things on their own “saved” him. He was saved Supernaturally by a work of the Spirit, independent of those Physical events.

  156. Believe, what are all those things you listed in 149b saving us from if we are already sealed/saved as the elect?

    What is the means and sign then that we are truly one of the Regenerate? Or is it holy russian roullette until we die and find out for sure?

  157. Believe,
    Through all of this, you are the only one here who has never said what you think is happening at baptism. Other than getting wet, what happens at a baptism at your church?

  158. Synergism is man “cooperating” with God unto Salvation.

    Your position appears to be that man can “forfeit” his Salvation, “walk away from it”…”stop the cooperating”.

    If Salvation is purely Monergism…man doesn’t have the option of “walking away”.

    If the shoe fits…

  159. “He was saved Supernaturally by a work of the Spirit, independent of those Physical events”

    and i am saying that “He was saved Supernaturally by a work of the Spirit, THROUGH those Physical events”

  160. MLD, what is happening at baptism for the Elect is a Regenerate man obeying the command to be baptized for the remission of sins. However, if a Regenerate man does not ever get baptized, he’s going to heaven.

    The Supernatural/Mystical event already happened BEFORE the physical baptism.

    What we have when someone who is unregenerate does it, is a bath.

  161. “If Salvation is purely Monergism…”

    But even you don’t believe that. You believe that repentance is your part and that you have to cooperate with your sanctification – so you my man are the synergist.

    I believe salvation is made up of repentance, justification, sanctification and glorification and God does all 4 without my help – I my friend am the monergist.

  162. “to be baptized for the remission of sins.”

    So are you at least saying that God IS working in the baptism and that sins at that time are remitted?

  163. MLD said, “and i am saying that “He was saved Supernaturally by a work of the Spirit, THROUGH those Physical events”

    Yes, and that is one of the key differences we have regarding our understanding of Grace.

  164. I’ll pop in to see how the debates going another time. Sleep is calling. Thanks for letting me ponder these things with you all.

  165. good night Anne

  166. MLD, one can be Regenerated and not that Sanctified while here on this physical earth. Your boy Martin Luther is Exhibit A.

  167. “Burn down the synagogues!”

    Sanctification in action, eh? ;-)

  168. “Yes, and that is one of the key differences we have regarding our understanding of Grace”

    It takes nothing from Grace. In all of the things I have spoken of it IS God doing the work and giving the grace. You on the other hand deny God the ability to do gracious things for us in a physical setting. You align yourself with the gnostics who thought the physical is bad.

  169. When you are getting whipped in these discussions you bring up Luther and the jews. You are too predictable.

    Answer my #163 @ 11:29

  170. Anne said, “Believe, what are all those things you listed in 149b saving us from if we are already sealed/saved as the elect?

    What is the means and sign then that we are truly one of the Regenerate? Or is it holy russian roullette until we die and find out for sure?”

    Good questions, IMO.

    The trick is we’re already saved. The Elect are destined to Salvation. We are vessels of mercy (I hope). Noah, Moses, Abraham, the Prophets, David, The Thief on the Cross, the Disciples (except Judas, who is specifically referenced as the “only” one lost to fulfill God’s Plan), Paul, all the way to us…were/are all destined / pre-destined to Salvation. Vessels of mercy. God’s Children. Wheat. Lambs. Sheep. Brides. God’s Chosen.

    God knew us before the foundation of the world, before the beginning of time, before creation. Jesus Christ was Messiah, Is Messiah, and Is Messiah to come. Messiah was before the devil, man and sin. The Way was provided and paid for before we were even born. So many Scriptures explicitly state such in a Context that does not violate a Greater Truth or a Foundational Truth.

    What is the one consistent Spiritual Dynamic that has Saved both OT and NT, both Jew and Gentile? Faith/Belief.

    Can one be saved and not be baptized? Yes, many examples.

    Can one be saved and not take communion? Yes, many examples.

    Can one be saved and not acknowledge Christ before men? Yes.

    Can one be saved and not have Faith/Belief in the Messiah to come, the Messiah in their presence, the Resurrected Messiah? No. This is a Foundational Truth.

  171. Baptism means to wash.
    ————————————-
    I appreciate you humoring me here. I am not trying to be coy nor a jerk. It is important (I feel) to have some semblance of knowing what you believe on these things before I can proceed.

    Since this octagon page isn’t going anywhere, I will pick it up at a later date (and an earlier hour :) ). But MLD, your answer above ‘to wash’ is not really correct. Not really…not in Koine.

    We have to ask ourselves (don’t we?) why the Spirit inspired certain words of the text. I know you, MLD, believe all the Scripture is inspired.

    There are 3 Koine words, all used in the NT, that mean ‘to wash’ – none of them related to the word for baptism. They are: louo, nipto, plyno.

    Although baptism can have that connotation, the origin of our word ‘baptism’ does not carry that denotation. It is the denotation that is crucial.

    Even if you disagree with what I will later say, ask youself this…if baptism DOES most simply mean “to wash” then WHY would Jesus use that word for the coming of the Spirit at Pentecost??

    Why not tell the apostles in Acts chapter one, you will receive the Spirit, He will come shortly or any innumerable alternatives than to tell them they will be BAPTIZED with the Holy Spirit. They will be WASHED with the Spirit? By means of fire no less?!

    I’ll let you ponder that…maybe do some research…and we will continue later.

    Peace.

  172. What about Naaman?

  173. AV,
    Just as Believe likes to think that he can steamroll by trying to out logic Aristole, you seem to use the same tactic of trying to out greek the Greeks.

    My online source gives this definition for your use of the word from Acts 1:5
    1.) to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
    2.) to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one’s self, bathe
    3.) to overwhelm

    Then there is this from James Montgomery Boice;
    Not to be confused with 911, bapto. 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’ (bapto) into boiling water and then ‘baptised’ (baptizo) 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. When used in the New Testament, this word more often refers to our union and identification with Christ than to our water baptism. e.g. Mark 16:16. ‘He that believes and is baptised shall be saved’. Christ is saying that mere intellectual assent is not enough. There must be a union with him, a real change, like the vegetable to the pickle! Bible Study Magazine, James Montgomery Boice, May 1989.

  174. AV,
    You may ridicule my answers (which is fine, I’m a big boy) but your original question is based on a false theology. Here was your original question ; “MLD – Please explain the Lutheran view of “The baptism of the Holy Spirit”

    You see, there is no such thing as a baptism of the Holy Spirit. This would imply that it is the Holy Spirit who is doing the baptizing.

    But what the passages say is that “you will be baptized ‘with’ the Holy Spirit. The baptism is of Jesus.

    So, back to my original reply, my church has no formal doctrine, really not even a loose doctrine on “The baptism of the Holy Spirit.” Again, this may be a category in which you and your denomination think, but it is foreign to Lutherans.

    Paul in 1 Cor 12:13 seems to clearly show that we are all baptized in the spirit and we then become one body – the church. I am sure that every Corinthian looked back to his WATER baptism as being this event.

  175. MLD – Your post 174 is exactly where I am going. They do NOT say what your earlier posts said.

    So which is it?

    Do you believe what Boice is saying, or do you believe what you wrote last night?

    Rest assured my brother, I will never try to steamroll you or anyone with Greek. In fact, that is why I came down on that earlier post (my 111) – because I despise error in the name of “the original language” which is supposed to silence the rabble who don’t know Greek (or Hebrew).

    But the Greek is important. Again, words have significance. Jesus said you would be baptized with the Holy Spirit.

    So do you agree with Boice or not? To repeat from your post:

    When used in the New Testament, this word more often refers to our union and identification with Christ than to our water baptism. e.g. Mark 16:16. ‘He that believes and is baptised shall be saved’. Christ is saying that mere intellectual assent is not enough. There must be a union with him, a real change, like the vegetable to the pickle! Bible

  176. AV
    I am out for a good part of the day, and this phone texting sucks.
    But you ignored where I anwered your question about baptism and washing AND bigger yet – the false theology of baptism OF the HS.

  177. I will get back to you why I included the Voice quote

  178. Side thought:
    Michael may need to open one of these rooms for each week as they get soooo long and then take forever to reload even on my fast mac!

  179. MLD – I too am out, and I put some thoughts into the Assurance thread.

    The Baptists, the dispensationalists, the Pentecostals, the CC movement, a ton of nondenominational, independent churches – even Billy Graham have all written on a “doctrine of the Holy Spirit” – even the other branches of Christendom have something to say on the issue, whether Catholic, Protestant, or Orthodox.

    If you insist on calling something a false theology, we are at a dead-end.

  180. AV,
    Catholics (unless charismatic) and Eastern Orthodox DO NOT have a theology re: the Baptism of the Holy Spirit separate from baptism. As far as the Holy Spirit as comforter, teacher, etc. You are right they are included in their theology. The Day of Pentecost is celebrated but not in the context of primacy which you give it by saying their was no Body or Bride of Christ until Acts 2. If I am remembering correctly it is seen as a special dispensation to initiate the spreading of the Gospel outside of Jerusalem.

  181. Anne, I know it is from wikipedia (below), but I still think it is accurate. Please note, I do not subscribe to the ‘secondary blessing’ aspect. If a given church believes the baptism of the Spirit is synonymous with water baptism (at that moment) then that is still a “doctrine” or teaching on the subject. Peace.

    Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and various Protestant denominations have had different ways of defining who is and who is not a “full” member of the Church and thus of who has and has not received the Holy Spirit. However, despite differences in defining who is and who is not a Christian, these all agreed that all Christians have received baptism in the Holy Spirit.

  182. AV,
    I got to a regular computer for 5 min.

    You played a trick here – “even Billy Graham have all written on a “doctrine of the Holy Spirit” This was not the discussion – you had specifically asked about the Lutheran Church’s doctrine of “the baptism of the Holy Spirit.” We have none, as I stated.

    We have much to say about the person and work of the Holy Spirit – but as I said, The Baptism OF – note your OF and not the biblical WITH – that makes all the difference in the world with this discussion.

    But you can help us along a little if you would just clearly state how you have developed a theology of The Baptism of the Holy Spirit – that may help clear up my thoughts.

  183. First, I screwed up. I meant to say of Graham and others that they have written on a Doctrine of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. So my bad there.

    All I wanted to know from the Lutheran position is something like: We believe the baptism of (with) the Holy Spiirt takes place at the moment of water baptism. That would be a teaching, a doctrine. I don’t know if you DO believe that, but it was the ‘spirit’ of my question – pun fully intended. :)

    With due respect, your replies sounded like I was asking about the doctrine of manna, or the doctrine of the ark, or some other historical, but irrelevant item of the Biblical past.

  184. and not the biblical WITH
    ——————————–
    Since I don’t want to be a Greek bully, let me just say you should walk humbly when talking about the little preposition, en. There is a world of discussion about this preposition in some of the more challenging Biblical texts.

    And there are other prepositions like meta and syn that are also translated ‘with’

  185. Anne –
    “Catholics (unless charismatic) and Eastern Orthodox DO NOT have a theology re: the Baptism of the Holy Spirit separate from baptism.”

    I may be mistaken, but I believe this is where the Eastern Orthodox view of chrismation comes in. That would be their method of dealing with the Baptism of/with/in the Holy Spirit apart from baptism by water.

    Again, I may be wrong on this point…I’m working from memory of a conversation I had with my brother regarding his chrismation.

  186. Acta 2:38,39 says “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins AND to receive the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and your CHILDREN…”

  187. Steve,

    Why did you emphasize children? I ask because I have adult children.

  188. The emphasis was to show that the promise of the gift of the Holy was also for our children, in baptism. And no age requirement is stated. And since God is the One who actually does the baptizing, there would be no age requirement, for when God makes a promise and carries out an act, He is doing it regardless of someone’s age.

  189. I am sure that I am not as confused as I seem to be, but are you making a case for 2 baptisms? I understand you don’t believe in a 2nd blessing but are you saying that apart from your water baptism you also have a baptism of the spirit?

  190. In the Bible, almost every single time the word baptism (baptizo) is used, it is used in conjunction with ‘water baptism’. That’s what baptism is!

    But Luther makes the point, “it is NOT WATER ONLY”. It is God’s Word attached to the water that makes it efficacious. (sp?)

  191. Steve –
    Contextually, the invitation to be baptized was for those who believed & repented. Adults & children alike were welcome to come. You’re correct in noting there’s no age requirement, but there’s zero indication that someone would be baptized who did not 1st repent.

  192. Here is Baptism in Luther’s Large Catechism

    http://bookofconcord.org/lc-6-baptism.php

  193. The repentance is in the baptism! God does repentance…not us. St. Paul tells us that.

    When Jesus commanded that we go and make disciples, baptizing and teaching about himself, he didn’t mention that people ought to meet some requirements first. he said baptize all nations (ponta ethnae in the Greek) which translates to ALL PEOPLE.

  194. If repentance is something that WE DO…then it is a work.

    And we all know that we are not saved by works, lest anyone should boast, but by grace through faith.

  195. Tim,
    Repentance is one of those odd concepts – who does the repenting?

    The Parable of the Lost Sheep speaks to this – Luke 15:3-7
    “He told them this parable. “Which of you men, if you had one hundred sheep, and lost one of them, wouldn’t leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one that was lost, until he found it? When he has found it, he carries it on his shoulders, rejoicing. When he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I tell you that even so there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, than over ninety-nine righteous people who need no repentance.”

    So, did the sheep repent or was he repented?

  196. I agree that faith is a gift from God, thus the repentance that is evident in a person’s heart (and life) is borne out of the work of God. Yet you equate baptism with repentance, whereas I do not see any place that the Bible does so. Far more often than not, the Bible portrays baptism as the sign of repentance & belief; not as the repentance itself.

  197. Tim, I did not equate repentance with baptism. I was just countering the notion that ‘since infants cannot repent, they cannot be baptized.’ My position is that God can repent people of all ages and baptize them.

    I look at the passage ““Repent, and be baptized every one of you…” as a single action.
    Like this (Repent and be Baptized) everyone of you

  198. Tim,

    You are not seeing any evidence? Romans 6 ? What talk of your repentance (what you do) is there in Romans 6. Or in 1st Peter, “Baptism now saves you”

    Or in Galatians, “Those of you who have been baptized have out on Christ.”

    Naaman was made clean, by what he did? Or by following God’s instruction to wash (there it is again – baptism)

    The evidence is all over the place.

  199. ‘put on Christ’

    (some idiot put the ‘o’ right next to the ‘p’ on my keyboard…

  200. Anne said, “What is the means and sign then that we are truly one of the Regenerate? Or is it holy russian roullette until we die and find out for sure?””

    I’d say the Fruits of the Spirit, but those can be counterfeit. Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Self-Control. I’ve witnessed Atheists demonstrate these things, and they’re not counted as Righteous…and I’ve seen Pastors in the Pulpit do the opposite of these things for decades…and they are counted as Righteous.

    Getting Crushed by God in Repentance is a good sign, IMO. Been there, done that. Being crushed when I was in sin gave me assurance. I felt the presence of God like no other time in my life, when I was ground to dust and cried out to Him.

    However, I don’t “know” “for sure” if I am one of the Elect. I “hope” I am. I beg God for His Mercy…on me a sinner.

    That’s all I’ve got.

  201. James Montgomery Boice: When used in the New Testament, this word more often refers to our union and identification with Christ than to our water baptism

    Steve Martin: In the Bible, almost every single time the word baptism (baptizo) is used, it is used in conjunction with ‘water baptism’. That’s what baptism is!

    One of you two guys is wrong.

  202. Anne, the Means is the Work of our Messiah and the Holy Spirit. Nothing, including Baptism, that “we” do.

  203. I understand you don’t believe in a 2nd blessing but are you saying that apart from your water baptism you also have a baptism of the spirit?
    —————————————
    Yes. The latter at the moment of salvation. The former, whenever the weather is warm enough to go down to the beach. :)

    (Read my first post in the Assurance thread for more explanation)

  204. Boyce is wrong.

    The writers of the Bible were (are) right. :D

  205. it seems to me that, if the correct conceptualization of the Greeks’ use of their word(s) for baptism is the one we’re to use when we see the word, then the concept of an identification is a much stronger one than that of cleansing . . . we are identified with Christ by the baptism of the Holy Spirit – and yes, we don’t do it; God does.
    i think possibly the O.T. custom of immersing or washing in water was a confession of man’s **need** of cleansing, not an actual cleansing – is it a requirement of the Law? i don’t think so. . . the closest i can come to applying that Jewish tradition to our custom of using water today is that our Lord as a man submitted to it and, therefore, if we’re honest, we, too will follow Him in submitting – to an immersion – in the Jordan? that probably isn’t the point . . .

  206. My buddy is a Lutheran pastor up in Utah.

    He wrote this (not too long) blog post concerning “Being born of water and the Spirit”

    http://utah-lutheran.blogspot.com/2010/01/unless-one-is-born-of-water-and-spirit.html

    You may pick up on something you had not seen before.

  207. and furthermore :D are we not cleansed by the precious blood of the Lamb of God when we confess Him as Lord and Savior?

  208. Another major problem with the Lutheran Position, IMO:

    How does one “walk away” from Regeneration/Salvation?

    How does one “walk away” from and “forfeit” their Baptism?

    Can you give me a list of specific examples?

  209. You’re cleansed by the blodd of the Lamb, before you confess it!

    Confessing it means that you have REALLY HEARD it. God has given you faith to believe it.

  210. Steve, was going to reference Romans 10:9-10, but not trying to teach the choir – just sayin

  211. Right, Em.

    But then there is Jesus saying to those that DID confess Him, “We did this and that in your name.”

    And Christ Jesus said, “No way Jose…I never knewest thou…hit the bricks, pal!”

  212. Here’s a different voice (literally).

    My pastor discusses the Sacraments in this mp3 audio. I think he explains things a lot better than I do. Plus you get some good explanation of how the Roman Catholics view the Sacraments (a bit differently than do Lutherans).

    http://theoldadam.wordpress.com/2009/11/21/pastors-class/

    I think you will enjoy it. And it just might even give you fresh ammo!

    .

  213. Steve –
    I would argue that the Romans 6 passage is plainly speaking of the sign of baptism…but you knew I would disagree with you there.

    There is a great illustration of this in Acts 8 regarding the Ethiopian. Which came first: belief or baptism? The baptism was the physical expression of his newly born belief.

    (By the way, the o/p typo happens to me all the time too…especially when I’m trying to text on my cell phone! :) )

  214. Tim,

    In Romans 6, Paul does not use the words ‘represents’, or ‘symbolizes’. He knew those words. He writes about real events that are happening, have happened, because of God’s action in baptism.

    If you can, please try and listen to that audio I posted a comment of mine back. It speaks to EXACTLY what you are talking about.

    Thanks, Tim.

    And…I wouldn’t even date to attempt doing this on my phone’s keyboard. It would look like this…hjte9u 38uebi mbftsj krellbb loduue, thancks! :D

  215. Tim,
    “Which came first: belief or baptism? The baptism was the physical expression of his newly born belief.”

    Evangelicals have problems with this concept all the time. In their effort to run from anything spiritual happening in a physical baptism (except getting wet) they deny all clear passages that something happens during baptism.

    When it comes to adults, Lutherans baptize after belief – in fact we catechize them before we allow baptism, so that they know what is happening at baptism. An evangelical needs no instruction before baptism except “bring a bathing suit.” ;)

    So, adults, still get the exact same grace filled saving benefits with his baptism that the infant gets – all of it!!.

  216. Steve,
    “Paul does not use the words ‘represents’, or ‘symbolizes’. He knew those words.”

    How soon you forget Paul’s oops!

  217. MLD – Are you going to answer my questions?

    1) When does the Holy Spirit indwell the new believer?
    2) If baptism saves, what is the state of the one who is not baptized (like the adults you mention above – still going through catechism)?

    Thanking you in advance…your pal, AV.

  218. MLD,

    That video was really good!

  219. AV,
    Answered it yesterday at 2:53pm

  220. The Holy Spirit indwelt me at about 3 months old. That’s when I was baptized (if we will believe what the Bible says in Acts 2:38).

    Now, was I a mature, understand a whole lot about the faith Christian? No. Was I an adopted son of the Living God? Yes, I was. Since when do babies have anything to say about who adopts them, and who does not?

    I think we mentioned (like yesterday sometime) that God can save apart from Baptism. And that He can also save in Baptism. We allow God that freedom. We think He has earned it. But the One who has earned that right told us to baptize and to be baptized.

  221. We have been very clear and consistent in our position. Baptism is not the only means that God delivers grace, forgiveness and salvation to the indivdula. The spoken word, the written word, baptism and the Lord’s Supper all do the work of God.

    I know that evangelical think it just drops out of the sky like a mist upon the believer, but that is not what we see. Look at all the times salvation and forgiveness are mentioned with the word, baptism and the Lord’s Supper – and for evangelicals to deny that there is power in any of them is ridiculous. Nowhere do we see, “it just happens”

    Now, baptism is the way God saves infants

  222. EVERY infant, EVERY time!

    What about Hitler! What about Jerkas Nasalfly the II ?

    Must we ossify EVERYTHING and place God into a little box of our own design?

    Must everything concerning God be formulaic?

    Ah….no.

  223. Since when do babies have anything to say about who adopts them, and who does not?
    —————————————-
    I love these sorts of statements when used to support a debated point. Taking our year 2011, made in America, understanding of a cultural term and applying it to the 1st Century when the Bible was written..

    May I suggest a little study about adoption in the Roman Empire.

    MLD – You pointed me to a post that does not even mention the Holy Spirit. How does that answer the question “When does the Holy Spirit indwell the new believer”

    Michael said, argue until you are exhausted. I have reached the exhaustion point.

    The indwelling of the Spirit is the litmus test for salvation in the Bible. If you have the Spirit, you belong to Christ. If not, you don’t.

    If the Spirit comes at the moment of saving faith, then baptism does not save. If the Spirit comes at the time of water baptism, then baptism is essential and we should be like the Church of Christ and dunk you on the spot.

    If your fall-back position when faced with such inconsistency is God can do whatever He wants – then there really is not much point in looking to the Bible as any sort of revelation, guide or authority.

  224. I just wonder how many here think that when Paul said to the Galatians, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” that the Galatians thought of anything besides their water baptism?

    Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? ;)

  225. Not me!

    I thought about MY heartfelt, totally sincere, no self-motivation or fear of hell, decision for Jesus!

    That’s what I ALWAYS think about!

    What else do I have? The whole thing started with me…so that’s where it ought to continue. I don’t need a God who actually acts FOR ME! I HAVE ME !!!

  226. AV,
    Well, It did answer #2 – I must have gazed over #1. I am at my office getting interrupted from my main blogging job. ;)

    How about you answer a question I have asked you 3 or 4 times today – that has gone unanswered.

    What is your theology / doctrine of The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.?

  227. Lutheran brothers…can you answer these for me please? 2nd request:

    How does one “walk away” from Regeneration/Salvation?

    How does one “walk away” from and “forfeit” their Baptism?

    Can you give me a list of specific examples?

  228. Believe,
    Do the work yourself. God was not just talking to the wind in all the warning passages or when he had the writers describe people who did fall away or even have Jesus speak directly to it in the parables.

  229. What is your theology / doctrine of The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.?
    ———————————————————
    I tried to answer this already. I know I made it clear in the Assurance thread I pointed you to earlier.

    The baptism of (with, in) the Holy Spirit is the taking of the the new believer out of his identification “in Adam” and placing him into the Body of Christ at the moment of his salvation. This is a classic position within Protestantism – nothing new there at all.

    Like Boice, I see many of the NT baptism verses in this light. The problem is that you see these verses as implying water baptism always, which would mean (if you exegete the passages carefully) that water baptism is essential for salvation. Yet, you have clearly stated that water baptism is not essential for salvation.

    OK – having answered (again) I am free to depart, having met my obligations, but with my earnest inquiries woefully unmet.

  230. One for the road ( I have to get going).

    How can one walk away from their baptism? There’s about a million and a half ways.

    Here’s just one example. Jesus tells us to “eat His body and drink his blood, otherwise you have no life in you.” Actually it was a command, like baptism.

    Now if one decides on their own with help from unbelieveing pastors or elders that Jesus’ body and blood are NOT REALLY THERE…then maybe, as Jesus said, you are walking away from the gift that He has given you.

    And then, as Luke points out, there are the cares and distractions of the world, and then as Jesus points out there are those doing all manner of things in His name who are just being religious (the Christian project people) and whom He does not really know.

  231. You guys should really interact in the assurance thread. You need to address the points made there as to the Spirit’s sealing until the day of redemption – and when and how exactly the One who promised to never leave or forsake us does in fact leave and forsake us.

    Apparently, something like changing one’s view on the Lord’s Supper (per Steve above) can cause this great loss. Quite a threat to toe the Lutheran line if you ask me. Frankly, a lot like Rome. All we need is the anathema.

  232. AV,

    You act as though it were I who said it!

    It was our Lord who said it. He was probably just joking…

  233. Well I have said it before, that the ‘once saved always saved’ crowd has a problem on their end. If a believer stops believing – total rejection, then you now have an unbeliever in heaven. ;)

  234. Gotta run for a couple of hours. Isn’t this more fun than we should be allowed to have?? ;)

  235. MLD,

    Well, you have a PROFESSED unbeliever in heaven. I find it hard to believe that someone who once knows the truth can un-know it. More likely he is simply denying it to others for whatever reason. But whatever, there are some who shipwreck their faith.

    And there are consequences for this at the Bema Seat Judgement (for believers) that should never be minimized.

    I would ask, how can someone who is born again be unborn?

    Many Christians are “unbelievers” in different realms. Jesus often rebuked the disciples’ unbelief. So yes, Christians can be unbelievers even in the sense of denying Christ.

    Hypothetically, if Ole Pete had died just after the cock crew thrice, …oooops! :shock:

  236. If a believer stops believing – total rejection, then you now have an unbeliever in heaven.
    ———————————————————-
    Do Lutherans see saving faith as mere mental assent? Because I know nobody on this side of the discussion has said such a thing…so wondering why you brought it up now.

    Oh yeah…it was a convenient misrepresentation of others to bolster your own argument. ;)

  237. A Believer & AV,
    Hey, I get that from Pastor Chuck – “stay under the spout where the glory comes out.” :-)

    1 Tim 5:15 – “for some have already turned aside to follow Satan.”

    1 Tim 1:20- “Among these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.”

    I don’t know how it happens, but it seems to happen.

  238. The Christian (Lutheran – I won’t let you guys hijack Christianity by always asking about the “Lutheran” position since i don’t ask about the CC position) is that a person cannot lose their salvation – you cannot sin your way out of God’s grace. You can however walk away from it.

    We have done this a hundred times with the parable of the sower – the guy received the the exact same thing as the good soil guy, he received it with great joy (not under compulsion) and he kept it for a while. But, when things got tough, it was in his own best interest to give it up – it was never taken from him.

    What can I say – and that wasn’t just the parable, that was Jesus’ own explanation of that parable.

  239. AV,
    “Do Lutherans see saving faith as mere mental assent?” We are far from it – in fact in the opposite direction – how can an infant give mental assent?

    However, it is the evangelicals who just give mental assent – look at this back page of a Billy Graham tract from some years ago – I will try to spell correctly because I don’t have it on line to copy and paste.

    You can invite Jesus Christ into your life right now by praying to God something like the following.

    “Dear Lord, I know that I am a sinner and that i need your forgiveness. I believe that Christ died in my place to pay the penalty for my sin and that He rose from the dead. I now invite Jesus Christ to come into my life as my savior. Thank you for making me your child. Help me learn to please you in every part of my life.”

    Then there is a place to sign and date the form.

    That to me sounds like mental assent.

  240. The Christian (Lutheran – I won’t let you guys hijack Christianity by always asking about the “Lutheran” position since i don’t ask about the CC position)
    ——————————————–

    A) That would be quite arrogant of you, and you would be the one hijacking. How can you say that yours is the Christian position. Does that mean that those who think otherwise are NOT Christians, or does it mean that they might be Christians who hold unChristian views. Isn’t a professing Christian pushing unChristian teachings a heretic and false teacher? I mean, really..MLD. Come on.

    B) YOU are the one who consistently rips on me and others by saying “the problem with evangelicals is…” in your posts. You do it constantly.I don’t care if you ask for a CC position – but doing so is usually futile since on many things there is no “CC” position. We do not all agree with Chuck on all things – and the security and baptism of the Spirit isssues are two such examples in my case. Whereas, with Lutherans, it does seem like there is a “Lutheran position” – at least from the conservative, Bible-believing, Lutherans – and that is why I ask as I do.

  241. AV,
    You are not being very… hmm, I was going to say honest, but I will leave it at, you’re not being very fair. You know that your implication each time is, “well, here is the Christian or the Bible position on this issue – so what do ‘Lutherans’ say on this?”

    Or, when you ask that, are you saying that you don’t know if you hold the Christian position?

    Why is it OK for CC to not have a ‘position’ on some topics “I don’t care if you ask for a CC position – but doing so is usually futile since on many things there is no “CC” position.” But when I say that the Lutheran Church has no position on “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit” you get to say, as you did last night at 10:15pm “That is just really odd to me MLD…and kind of disappointing you guys don’t have a take.”

  242. 1 Corinthians 5:5 hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.

    MLD, you presume too much.

    Either they were Tares and Stony Ground Conversions and unregenerate…or God will save them, as the Elect, per the verse above.

  243. Why is it OK for CC to not have a ‘position’ on some topics “I don’t care if you ask for a CC position – but doing so is usually futile since on many things there is no “CC” position.” But when I say that the Lutheran Church has no position on “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit” you get to say, as you did last night at 10:15pm “That is just really odd to me MLD…and kind of disappointing you guys don’t have a take.”
    ——————————————————————–
    I meant there is no universally accepted position, not that we deny there is such a teaching in the first place (as my two examples of security and the baptism of the Spirit showed).

    I really don’t see how asking in effect ‘what do Lutherans believe” (for that is all I mean by the Lutheran position) is offensive or hijacking.

    However, in the future, I will ask simply “What do you believe” and trust that you will tell me when your personal view on something differs from your denomination’s teaching.

    I mean no sinister implications. All of the questioning comes from the general understanding that I think we both share – true Christians can believe different things about a lot of doctrine. There are only a few essentials that one must believe to be saved – and the rest is open for discussion and possible change of mind (as you have shown in your life in changing your views on some things, and I have as well).

    Finally, I am just tweaking you more than most BECAUSE I know you and you are a friend. Theater…remember? :)

  244. AV,
    No offense taken from this end.
    I just find it funny that your tribe can pick and choose what “doctrine” to comment on but it is not allowed of others. Like I tried to say early on, The Baptism OF the HS it is not a category by itself as it seems to be with CC.

    Now Jesus baptizing people with the HS is incorporated into conversations about Repentance, Justification, Conversion and Baptism – but it is a part of these conversations – not a stand alone topic as you make it.

    btw, I can push buttons with the best of them and it is the reason that I continually post this video on this thread to show the folly of the origination of your position. ;)

    Speaking of the folly of your positions, did you watch the 1st five min of the video I posted on the eschatology thread last night – that one is a good “gotcha” :-)

  245. I just find it funny that your tribe can pick and choose what “doctrine” to comment on but it is not allowed of others
    —————————————
    Isn’t that what the Distinctives say? “Being a CC, nobody knows what you believe”

    :)

  246. LOL – :-)

  247. Interesting cut and paste regarding the use of the word “for” in Acts 2:38

    “And you have thought and some others have thought that “for the remission of sins” meant “in order to get remission of sins,” or “so that they would get remission of sins.” However, that is not the meaning. The preposition here translated for is again the little Greek preposition eis, an indefinite preposition of reference used so many times in the Bible. Just as in 1 Corinthians 10:2 speaks of the children of Israel baptized with reference to Moses, so here Peter spoke of being baptized with reference to their remission of sins which they would receive when they repented.

    The Holy Spirit very carefully and exactly selected the words that He used. There is a Greek preposition hina which means “in order to,” or “so that.” That is not the preposition used here. That Greek preposition hina is used in the New Testament according to Young’s Analytical Concordance and translated one time albeit, one time because, one timeso as, twice as so that, and 542 times as simply that and to the intent one time and to the intent that one time. So, if Peter had meant “baptized that ye may receive the remission of sins,” he would have used that Greek preposition. The Greek terms are very exact.

    The Greek preposition eis is never used to mean “in order to,” or “to the end that.”

    It is true that the word eis is translated “for,” but even with that translation it would be not necessarily mean that one should be baptized in order to get remission of sins. A man is paid for his work already done, not in order to get him to work. A woman is praised for her beauty, not in order to make her beautiful. A child is punished for his disobedience, not in order to get him to be disobedient. To make a meaning here which would contradict the use of the preposition all through the Bible and which would contradict the clear Bible teaching on the plan of salvation as given in many other verses, is the wrong use of the Scriptures, is the wrong interpretation.”

  248. There are two whole pages (small font too) in Wallace’s Grammar concerning that preposition in that Acts verse. A multitude of interpretations is allowable by the language, reminding us once more that “exegesis is both science and art”

    In any event, nobody should use that one verse as any sort of prooftext or even as any sizable weight in the totality of one’s argument.

    As AB notes above though, the causal argument for that verse is quite weak, though held by a few.

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