Fulfilling the command to baptise.......

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Scott_Bushey, Jun 2, 2002.

  1. Scott_Bushey

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    In the church you attend, what is the time frame between the new believer's confessing of Christ and his being water baptized?

    [ June 02, 2002, 05:45 PM: Message edited by: Scott Bushey ]
     
  2. dp

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    I chose "As soon as possible" because it best fit how Baptisms are generally handled in the church I attend.

    There is no specific time-frame required by my church, but it is preferred that the Baptism be performed within a week or so. The specific date and choice of A.M./P.M. services (if applicable) is usually left to the individual.

    Some choose to be Baptized during the same service or later during the P.M. services that same day... some have waited a week or possibly a little longer in some cases.
     
  3. Helen

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    None of the above; rather when the pastor is sure of the reality of the conversion. There are some one-on-one's with the pastor first, and then there is a baptism. But the convert has to understand at least the basics of the faith and be able to profess them.
     
  4. LadyEagle

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    None of the above choices, so I didn't vote. It's up to the individual and pastor for reasons as Helen stated in her post. No time frame.
     
  5. rsr

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    Same as Helen and Eagle.
     
  6. Scott_Bushey

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    To those who voted "none of the above", Forgive me for not adding a *none of the above* category....this was my first poll.
    I ask, how does your response fit into the biblical idea of baptism?

    For example:
    These passages seem to depict an immediate, if not *as soon as possible* idea.

    Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
    Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
    Acts 2:39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
    Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
    Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

    The Ethipoian enuch seemed to demand being immediately baptised.

    Acts 8:30 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
    Acts 8:31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
    Acts 8:32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:
    Acts 8:33 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
    Acts 8:34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
    Acts 8:35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
    Acts 8:36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
    Acts 8:37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
    Acts 8:38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
    Acts 8:39 And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.

    John the Baptist's (not Presbyterian) proselyte baptism was immediate.

    John 1:23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.
    John 1:24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees.
    John 1:25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?
    John 1:26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not;
    John 1:27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose.
    John 1:28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.
    John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
    John 1:30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.
    John 1:31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.

    Can God save outside of the full theological knowledge that many do not have? For example: Scripture states, Come unto me you who are heavy laden. Someone who is heavy laden may not yet understand fully the implications of justification
    or sanctification. Or how about the passage, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved?" Can we say that these men or woman can in no way yet be saved? God does save in the womb even, if He so wills. How about people whom we've baptized in the past who are not true believers? You are aware that there are people whom we've applied the sacrament who were/are not saved. Just because someone says the right thing does not make them a believer. Here is what I am saying, the harmony of scripture does not support the idea that you have presented. Scriptural warrant is clear. The factors are: to come, to repent, receive, believe, cast your burden, for I care. I don't see it exhorting us to test or examine prior to baptism. I do not see this process being applied in scripture either.
    Are we not applying rudiments that are above and beyond that which the scriptures dictate in regards to being saved?

    Please expound.......

    Thanks
    In HIM,
    Scott

    [ June 02, 2002, 09:58 PM: Message edited by: Scott Bushey ]
     
  7. Chris Temple

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    Scott:

    I have great sympathy for those who are greatly concerned that baptismal candidates be true believers, especially in light of this day of easy believism and decisional regeneration. The intentions behind delayed baptism and catechizing of candidates is pure, yet I find it lacking in Scripture. Every instance of baptism in Scripture appears to be immediate upon conversion.
     
  8. rlvaughn

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  9. donnA

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    I did vote as soon as possiable, we don't do it the same day, nor does it have to be the next Sunday, but frequently is. Our pastor makes sure he talks with the new christian before baptism. So I now don't know if I'm a none of the above or a soon as possable.
     
  10. russell55

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    Yeah, but it was always warm there.... :D
     
  11. Helen

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    I think something to remember regarding the New Testament baptisms were that they were almost -- ALMOST -- always of Jews. The Jews KNEW their Scriptures. Very few cnverting to Christianity today do. This is probably a big difference that should not be overlooked.

    In addition, converting at the time of the new church was dangerous. One could get put out of synagogue. A little later, one could get killed. Conversions were not done lightly.

    Today in America, with the false gospel of "say the magic words and you are saved!", I do think it is wise to make sure the person is not simply having an emotional reaction or is way out in left field as far as doctrine is concerned. People today simply are not as Scripturally educated or as threatened (here in America) as the folks in the ancient church.

    Therefore I do think it is wise to have the pastor make sure about the candidate BASIC knowledge -- NOT "full theological knowledge." But knowing Jesus is God, that He created the world and everything else, etc. -- these are important!
     
  12. Scott_Bushey

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    Hi All,
    Thanks for your responses.
    In regards to the contrast between what scripture mandates and what we actually do......
    Are we saying that we are to adjust particular biblical ideas that are seemingly clear in scripture to the times if need be, and if this be the case, can you imagine the implications?

    In HIM,
    Scott
     
  13. HankD

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    Dear Bro Scott,

    Do we then wait for the Holy Ghost to fall upon the believer in a visible way?

    Things are not so clear cut today. Genuine faith is not so easy to discern now as then.

    Genuine faith was also easier to discern in the days of the apostles because a public baptism then almost always marked one for persecution and even death. There were few pretenders.

    Today it is not so easy when baptism has become a social ritual of convenience and practiced by almost all of the cults.

    Personally, I don't believe it violates the Scripture to wait a while to confirm the "believer's" faith which was so much more evident and obvious in the days of the Book of Acts.

    HankD

    [ June 03, 2002, 09:41 AM: Message edited by: HankD ]
     
  14. Daniel David

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    I think Chris expressed the same concern that several of us have. Although the Bible gives the implication that baptism is immediate, in today's day, the easy-believism is too prevalent.

    If everyone preached Lordship Salvation, than we could all return to immediate baptism. (This is a topic of baptism - I will not debate Lordship Salvation on this thread)
     
  15. Scott_Bushey

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    Hank,PTW,
    Acts 2 is clear to imply that *certain* people who heard the word were exhorted to repent and be baptized. I do not see the apostles investigating the effect of their preaching.

    Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
    Acts 2:39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
    Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
    Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

    Scott continues:
    I believe our present day error is in believing that we have been called to discern between true or false converts in the salvific realm. The above shows that the converts response was simply "gladness". It seems apparent that this was the prerequisite.

    1 Peter 3:21 implies that the only thing required of baptism is "a good conscience toward God".

    1 Pet 3:21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

    Yes scripture tells us we will know them by their fruits and yes, time will tell, but I do not see where it is our responsibility to assess the situation after the gospel has been faithfully preached and men confess their faith openly. We should respond in like manner and praise their confession, after all, the promise is of God, not us.

    Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

    The scriptural mandate is, historically as well as harmoniously: Repent, believe, receive, cast ones burdens, etc.

    In regards to Lordship salvation: Scripture is clear, no on is able to call Jesus Lord except by the Holy Spirit. If the Gospel is faithfully preached, it will save.

    [ June 04, 2002, 08:35 PM: Message edited by: Scott Bushey ]
     
  16. rlvaughn

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    If a church accepts a person's conversion as genuine, there is no Biblical nor doctrinal reason to delay baptizing that person. Implicit in postponing a person's baptism is this statement - we do not regard your conversion as genuine. But I doubt in actual practice churches are willing to explicitly state this to people.

    P.S.
    I think some of you should re-examine Chris Temple's post, as it seems you may have misunderstood his intent.
     
  17. rsr

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    Chris's point is well taken.

    On the other hand, there is no example in the New Testament of a congregation voting on accepting a new member, as is our custom.

    And the baptisms recorded in the New Testament -- so far as I can recall -- were all done by the apostles or deacons without regard to the congregation.

    I think some leeway is due here.
     
  18. Scott_Bushey

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    rsr writes:
    there is no example in the New Testament of a congregation voting on accepting a new member, as is our custom.

    Scott states:
    I believe this is a non central component to the church. Some churches vote on new members and some do not. I believe this to be a *non essential*.

    rsr continues:
    And the baptisms recorded in the New Testament -- so far as I can recall -- were all done by the apostles or deacons without regard to the congregation.

    Scott asks:
    What do you mean by "without regard" to the congregation?

    rsr writes:
    I think some leeway is due here.

    Scott asks:
    rsr, where does it all end? If we are liberal on this idea, who says liberality cannot be used elsewhere? If we do not hold firmly and dogmatically to the jots and tittles, it will in the end, be to our destruction (I promise)....especially, when it comes to the central ideas of the gospel.
     
  19. rsr

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    Scott:

    Sometimes I'm really just wondering aloud.

    Where does it all end? I don't know. But I do see your point -- although I don't think this is at all central to the Gospel.

    My point is that if Baptists accept the Bible as their only rule of faith and practice, why do we vote on accepting members?

    One explanation for the change is that today's churches do not have the Apostles in their midst; many of the Apostolic baptisms recorded were the result of a special message to the Apostles.
     
  20. Jonathan

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    Is it possible that there is a difference between a Biblical example and a Biblical mandate? If it is a Biblical mandate that a convert is baptized as soon as possible isn't it also a Biblical mandate that all church members sell all that they own and have all things in common?
     

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