Saturday, January 1, 2011

Polity (and Baptism) in the Local Church with Mark Devers

Recently listened to Mark Dever of 9Marks deliver an excellent message on the topic of church polity, what what caught my notice the most was his closing comments on the topic of baptism, that literally capped off the last final moments of the message.  I'm jotting a few notes down here because I think Pastor Dever is right on about this.

Dever identifies how there is no teaching of infant baptism in the new testament, nor are there any parallels of it to circumcision in the new testament.  The Apostle Paul denies the connection in Colossians 2, and rather parallels spiritual circumsicion to physical baptism, with the idea being that when you are born again you are to be baptized.

There is no mention of baptizing infants in the Didache, and there is no record of infant baptism in the first or second century.  By the third century there are a few disputed cases, but by the end of the third century the baptisms are Rome-style "saving" baptisms.  Until the time of Zwingli and Calvin, there is no infant baptism articulated that is not saving.

Dever's presented a summary that the oldest opinion would be that of believers baptism, the second oldest opinion that of the "saving" baptisms of the Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholics, and the third oldest  being 1,000 years later with the reformers.

In Romans 6 Paul is assuming that all those who have the new life have been baptized (again, being born again then baptized).  There is an implies acceptance of the cognitive gospel prior to baptism.

Here's the link to the message:  Polity in the Local Church with Mark Dever

1 comment:

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