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Source: (consider it) Thread: Re-Baptism ?
L'organist
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An old school friend of the children arrived to stay for New Year. It appears he has become quite heavily involved with a "new" local church, although not to the extent of being interested in a service on Sunday.

Anyway, during the course of conversation it came up that he had been baptised earlier in the year. When I said that it must take some guts to be baptised as an adult when one hadn't been as a child I was told that he had been baptised as an infant: he had his baptismal certificate and was still in touch with Godparents, indeed his Godparents had all attended his confirmation.

So I then asked how it could be that his new church had "baptised" him since my understanding was that once baptised it couldn't be undone and, even if one disapproved of or disputed the validity of infant baptism, surely confirmation (at the age of 15) meant that Christian initiation had well-and-truly taken place. And the answer I received was that confirmation "didn't count" since it wasn't mentioned in the Bible, and that only true "believer's" baptism was the way into the Christian family. Frankly I was appalled and would normally be extremely concerned that this young man is getting involved with some sort of sect - except that the church in the case is an HTB plant.

Anyway, what do shipmates think?

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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Bishops Finger
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I think you are right to be concerned.

Given that he has his baptismal certificate (Church of England, presumably), his baptism is perfectly valid, and was indeed ratified by him at his Confirmation.

If this 'new' church is an HTB plant, and therefore presumably Anglican, the Archdeacon ought to be informed of this radical departure from Anglican practice and teaching.

Who do these bl**dy people think they are? God Himself, perhaps?

[Mad]

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Arethosemyfeet
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Isn't this what Anabaptists did? And no, it has no place in Anglicanism.
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Ricardus
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I do believe in infant baptism, but if you don't, then this church's actions seem perfectly reasonable in themselves. If the guy hasn't been (in their view) validly baptised, then he needs to be baptised properly.

I don't understand why denial of infant baptism suggests some kind of extreme sect. Isn't it rather common among non-Anglican Protestants?

I also don't understand how confirmation could substitute for believer's baptism. IME a belief in believer's baptism does not imply anti-sacramentalism. Confirmation is not believer's baptism because the form - immersion in water - is not present.

That said, I would agree that an Anglican minister who doesn't believe in infant baptism is in the wrong church.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
I don't understand why denial of infant baptism suggests some kind of extreme sect. Isn't it rather common among non-Anglican Protestants?

Some non-Anglican Protestants. Infant baptism is the norm in Lutheran and most Presbyterian churches, Methodists (who, of course, have Anglican ancestry), many Congregationalists.

Credobaptism is the norm for Baptists (obviously), Pentecostal, most Restorationist Churches and independent Evangelical churches (including larger organisations such as Vineyard).

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Don't cling to a mistake just because you spent a lot of time making it.

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
An old school friend of the children arrived to stay for New Year. It appears he has become quite heavily involved with a "new" local church, although not to the extent of being interested in a service on Sunday.

I'm interested in why he went through the process of re-baptism if he doesn't want to be part of the worshipping life of the church. Or do you mean that he doesn't want to attend services at your church?
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Bishops Finger
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Perhaps he's presently involved with a weekday cell or house group?

Whether or not he wants to attend L'organist's church is irrelevant to the question being asked.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
Some non-Anglican Protestants. Infant baptism is the norm in Lutheran and most Presbyterian churches, Methodists (who, of course, have Anglican ancestry), many Congregationalists.

Credobaptism is the norm for Baptists (obviously), Pentecostal, most Restorationist Churches and independent Evangelical churches (including larger organisations such as Vineyard).

Sure - by 'common', I really meant 'not extreme'. I wouldn't describe any of the groups in your second list as 'sects' anyway.

(The diffuse nature of Pentecostalism means that some Pentecostal churches probably can be described as sects, but I wouldn't link that to credobaptism.)

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Nick Tamen

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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
So I then asked how it could be that his new church had "baptised" him since my understanding was that once baptised it couldn't be undone and, even if one disapproved of or disputed the validity of infant baptism, surely confirmation (at the age of 15) meant that Christian initiation had well-and-truly taken place. And the answer I received was that confirmation "didn't count" since it wasn't mentioned in the Bible, and that only true "believer's" baptism was the way into the Christian family.

It's definitely the norm around here that people baptized as infants who join a Baptist church will be “re-baptized,” only the Baptists wouldn’t consider it a rebaptism because they wouldn’t consider infant baptism an actual baptism. This is in part because of a completely different understanding of baptism—it’s not understood as a sacrament in which grace is conferred and initiation into the church takes place, but rather is an act of public profession of faith.

Now that said, that the situation you describe happened in an ostensibly Anglican setting does seem odd.

[ 01. January 2018, 12:17: Message edited by: Nick Tamen ]

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Bishops Finger
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Indeed, and I guess many of us who do believe in, and practise, infant/child baptism would affirm that the Baptists' point of view is perfectly understandable.

It's the fact that the church referred to is an HTB plant that is rather disturbing.

I know that some of the more charevo Anglican churches take the liturgy and practices of their denomination lightly sometimes, but this seems to be going too far.

Perhaps the plant's leader is a bit of a maverick?

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Gamaliel
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I have to say that all HTB-ish or HTB-influenced Anglican clergy I've met wouldn't baptise anyone who'd already 'been done' - even if they sat very lightly (as most of them do) by other Anglican rubrics and practices.

If it is the case with this HTB-plant then I wonder whether it represents a change of direction - or a continuation of a trajectory they're already on?

Plenty of HTB-ish clergy strike me as people who'd be a heck of a lot happier in a 'baptistic' church of some kind - be it Vineyard, Baptist or whatever remains of the older 'new churches' of the 1970s - '90s.

I think I'd like to hear from the leaders themselves before forming any firm judgement though. Does this chap's decision represent his own views as an earnest convert or does it represent the practices of an otherwise ostensibly Anglican group?

I once knew a woman whose vicar father had himself baptised (or re-baptised?) by immersion before retiring from the Anglican ministry. He had a portable baptismal pool brought into the church for the purpose, apparently.

Earnest young restorationist though I was at the time, I wondered to myself why he made such a big deal of it and why he didn't simply retire then seek baptism (or re-baptism) in a credo-baptist setting if that's where his convictions lay?

But then, both 'ends' of the CofE have mavericks and anomalies - such as Anglo-Papalists refusing to avail themselves of the Ordinariate for instance and wanting to 'stay put' only on their own terms (or admission to Rome on their own terms) ...

I'm sure one could find some equally puzzling things going on at that end of the spectrum as well as at the HTB end of things.

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

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SvitlanaV2
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Bishop's Finger

I don't think it's at all irrelevant, since the OP invites us to ask what re-baptism is for.

What I read somewhere once is that infant baptism emphasises what God does for us, whereas believer's baptism emphasises the human response - it's an act of will which indicates that one is committed to leading a new life in Christ. To participate actively in the worshipping existence of the church could be assumed to be a significant part of that new life.

OTOH, believer's baptism can be even more complicated than that. In (some kinds of) Pentecostalism it seems to have a protective quality, rather as infant baptism does, and I'm not sure that the transformational element takes priority.

But if the OP is interested in mainstream historical perspectives only (particularly CofE ones) then there's not much to say, is there? The church in question is simply breaking the rules and should be chastised.

My sense is that the CofE's tolerance of breadth undermines all attempts to control unorthodoxy.

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Bishops Finger
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Gamaliel said:
quote:
I think I'd like to hear from the leaders themselves before forming any firm judgement though. Does this chap's decision represent his own views as an earnest convert or does it represent the practices of an otherwise ostensibly Anglican group?
A fair point - this may be a one-off, and the comments reported in the OP appear to be those of the chap himself, and not necessarily those of the church leadership. It does sound as though their teaching might be a bit suspect, nevertheless!

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Bishops Finger
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Sorry - only 'suspect' in reference to Anglican practice. Not casting nasturtiums on Baptists at all, at all, yer Honour...

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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St. Gwladys
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I was christened/baptised as an infant and confirmed at 13 because that was how it was done. I became a Christian when I was a Universty, and , in the words of the definition of a sacrament, wanted to make an outward sign of an inward change, and so got baptised by immersion at the Evangelical church I attended.
I can accept infant baptism when the family of the child being baptised keep their promises to bring the child to church, but so often in our Church in Wales parish, we never see them again. I am therefore more in favour of "believer's baptism", where the individual has made a personal commitment and knows what he or she is doing.
On the other hand, I have a very close, very wise older friend who is a spiritual mentor, who was baptised and confirmed as a child, brought up in the church, made her own commitment, and has no need to reaffirm her baptismal or confirmation vows.
I think there has to be flexibility to accept both ways of thinking.

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"Careful what you say sir, we're on board ship here"
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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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I'm uncomfortable with this "make a personal commitment" language to which credo-baptism is so often tied. Faith is something some people ease in and out of, without any points of making anything. What are people exactly committing themselves to? What does it mean?

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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SvitlanaV2
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I think the meaning for many people who do it without being theologically versed is psychological. IOW, they invest the act with their own meaning rather than deferring to the official one given by the denomination.

I should think this kind of personalisation happens in all sorts of religious matters, since very few of us receive theological training.

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Tortuf
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Baptism
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Gamaliel
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I was christened as an infant and baptised by immersion (in the Thames) as an earnest young evangelical, so I completely 'get' where St Gwladys is coming from.

The 'make a commitment' thing is an evangelical jargon term for deciding for oneself or making a deliberate, considered and intentional step to follow Christ.

Fair enough. I just wish they wouldn't use such an awful, hackneyed and clichéd phrase and expect everyone else to understand what they mean by it.

It can also lead to a kind of 'easy-believism' thing where you stick your hand up in a meeting or 'go down the front' or whatever the particular 'decisionism' tactic happens to be.

'What do you mean he's not a Christian? He made a commitment when he was 14 ...'

That sort of thing.

I understand what is intended by such terms but no longer find them particularly helpful as short-hand descriptions of consciously finding faith.

I certainly agree that we should be 'intentional' and like St Gwladys deplore the widespread practice of having infants baptised and then never bothering which church or any 'intentional' practice of faith thereafter.

That said, I'm equally uncomfortable with attempts to assess who is 'in' or 'out' judged by responses at evangelistic rallies or how many people 'prayed the sinner's prayer' and such like malarkey.

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

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Baptist Trainfan
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This whole issue can be a minefield. I have now served in two ecumenical churches which practice both types of baptism – although, as a Baptist, I am not expected to actually carry out infant baptism (some of my colleagues in similar situations do,though).

We had a difficulty in my last church when a lady who had been christened in the church many years earlier wished to be re-baptised. There were specific circumstances around her situation: she has “special needs” and had recently lost her mother (a keen Christian); in a sense she was “striking out on her own” for the first time in her life. She adamantly refused to simply make a reconfirmation of the baptismal vows which had been sincerely made on her behalf – she saw this as being “fobbed off”.

We talked a lot about this at both the Deacons’ and Church Meetings and sought advice from “higher authority” both within the Baptist Union and the URC, the church being affiliated to both denominations (said authorities both replied, “We’re happy to endorse whatever the church decides”). Eventually we decided that, in this somewhat unique circumstance, pastoral considerations overcame church protocol, and the baptism went ahead – not without quite a few misgivings. But the lady felt “blessed” and we managed to avoid a major row in the congregation!

On a more general point, were I a paedobaptist I would very much agree with St. Gwladys' comments - although I understand that Anglicans (CofE anyway, perhaps not CinW) can't reasonably refuse a request for baptism. Is that correct?

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Eventually we decided that, in this somewhat unique circumstance, pastoral considerations overcame church protocol, and the baptism went ahead – not without quite a few misgivings.

Seems to me that this would be a good time to dust off the conditional baptism formula - no reason I can see that that can't be used with a full immersion.
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Baptist Trainfan
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Hmm ... it wouldn't have been applicable in our particular case. There was no doubt that the lady in question had been "properly" baptised as an infant.
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Gramps49
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I like the explanation that Baptists view baptism more as a public profession of personal faith.

I note that it is not all that unusual to see a person moving from, say the American Baptist tradition, to the Southern Baptist tradition to be rebaptized, though I do not think it is expected.

For most mainline churches (other than those of Baptist orientation) baptism is a sacrament which not only instills faith but also welcomes a person into the Body of Christ. Once in, there is no reason to redo it over and over again.

Most mainline churches they are moving away from the term "confirmation" to "Reaffirmation of the Faith." It is not something people do in their early teens but throughout their lives. Often, if a person who has been baptized before and wants to formally join my congregation, we ask if they want to do a "Reaffirmation of the Faith." Often times, though, when new people join, they just want to keep it quiet which is okay since most people want things to be seamless nowadays.

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RdrEmCofE
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quote:
This is in part because of a completely different understanding of baptism—it’s not understood as a sacrament in which grace is conferred and initiation into the church takes place, but rather is an act of public profession of faith. [Nick Tamen]
I agree but the misunderstanding is even more profound than you describe here.

Although baptism is one of the two rites in the Anglican Church considered to be 'sacraments', i.e. ( the outward and visible SIGN of an inward invisible grace), bestowed entirely by God, through faith, to the benefit of His believing people, it is also a SEAL and SIGN of the Covenant of Grace.

The infants of believing parent(s) are declared by scripture to be 'Holy' 1 Cor. 7:14, It is according to the faith of just one or both parents that their child is rendered 'holy to God' and not 'unclean'. Therefore the child has a RIGHT to be baptised as a sign and seal of its associate membership of The Church of Jesus Christ, who died for him/her. (The children of believers belong to God, not us). Confirmation 'confirms' the 'believers' part in accepting God's gracious act of redemption and taking the vows of allegiance to Christ and renunciation of evil that the parents and or Godparents made on the child's behalf at baptism, agreeing at that time to teach the child the ways of The Lord and prepare him/her to develop a trusting and faithful relationship with the triune God.

NOT understanding this theology is the reason that so many 'non-pew filling' Anglicans fall for the 'Rebaptism' bunk foisted upon them by well intentioned but ignorant adherents of full immersion believers baptism, on the spurious grounds that THEIR original baptism as an infant was invalid due to THEIR incapacity to BELIEVE at the time.

It was not their baptism that was invalid, it was their parents example and teaching or their own wayward rebellion and rejection of God's Covenant that caused their alienation from God. For those whom God has managed to bring to a position whereby they ASK for believers baptism and willingly receive it, So Much The Better I say. If only they had been better schooled in the ways of God and learned to hear his voice and follow his guidance they may never have needed to endure the humiliation of being led to Christ in late adulthood. They could have known him from Childhood like Timothy did.

2 Tim. 1:5 I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lo′is and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you.

But that was not the reason for their being qualified for baptism in infancy. Their qualification was entirely because God had made a covenant with one or both of their parents. They therefore, from birth, had an obligation to God to PERSONALLY ratify and agree the terms of that covenant as soon as they fully understood the full import of it. i.e. at Confirmation. (More exactly at the time of the truly ONE and ONLY baptism, that of The Baptism in The Holy Spirit, spoken of by Christ in John 3:4-15 which can happen at ANY time in a believers life, but usually follows full cognition of covenant consequences and responsibilities.) Failure to do so renders them renegades and Covenant Breakers, more serious than merely unbelieving through ignorance.

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Love covers many sins. 1 Pet.4:8. God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not holding their sins against them; 2 Cor.5:19

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Hmm ... it wouldn't have been applicable in our particular case. There was no doubt that the lady in question had been "properly" baptised as an infant.

Well, sure - so the conditional baptism wouldn't have done anything (if you are of a mind that baptism "does" anything) but would still have had all the actions and ceremonial that your lady wanted. It is probably a bit irregular to perform a conditional baptism when you know for certain that the person is baptized, but that seems a much smaller fudge towards pastoral needs than a re-baptism.
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Raptor Eye
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I'm uneasy with the language that infant baptism doesn't count, and that full immersion is the only credential to define a Christian. This is exclusive and can be unkind.

I don't have an issue with someone christened as an infant who decides as an adult that they would like full immersion rather than or as well as confirmation, whether to make their own declaration to the world of their committed faith, or as a personal desire to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. I think that the Church should be happy to facilitate this. After all, whoever baptises someone is asking God to bless them, and it is God who responds to what us in our hearts, and who is in control of blessings

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Be still, and know that I am God! Psalm 46.10

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Hmm ... it wouldn't have been applicable in our particular case. There was no doubt that the lady in question had been "properly" baptised as an infant.

Well, sure - so the conditional baptism wouldn't have done anything (if you are of a mind that baptism "does" anything) ...
Interesting point: "official" Baptist teaching is that baptism doesn't "do" anything, however most people who get baptised do expect to receive some kind of (undefined) "blessing".

quote:
... but would still have had all the actions and ceremonial that your lady wanted. It is probably a bit irregular to perform a conditional baptism when you know for certain that the person is baptized, but that seems a much smaller fudge towards pastoral needs than a re-baptism.

Perhaps, but the term "conditional baptism" is unknown in (most) Nonconformist circles. And wouldn't it be telling a lie to baptism conditionally if you knew for a fact that the person had already been baptised?

[ 01. January 2018, 15:56: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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cliffdweller
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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
I don't understand why denial of infant baptism suggests some kind of extreme sect. Isn't it rather common among non-Anglican Protestants?

Some non-Anglican Protestants. Infant baptism is the norm in Lutheran and most Presbyterian churches, Methodists (who, of course, have Anglican ancestry), many Congregationalists.

Credobaptism is the norm for Baptists (obviously), Pentecostal, most Restorationist Churches and independent Evangelical churches (including larger organisations such as Vineyard).

Yes.

But even churches that practice infant baptism don't necessarily frown on re-baptism. As noted, it really depends on your understanding of the sacraments.

I was baptized as an infant in the UCC (United Church of Christ), but wanted to be rebaptized as a youth due to my understanding of baptism at the time. My UCC congregation accommodated this at my confirmation.

The Presbyterian church I'm ordained in (PCUSA), otoh, is open to either infant or credo-baptism but does not re-baptize, pretty much for the reasons outlined above.

The obvious reality here is that there is a broad range of beliefs within broadly orthodox Christianity, so we shouldn't be too shocked at one group requiring or encouraging rebaptism. I would agree that if it is an Anglican Church that would be more of a concern.

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"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid." -Frederick Buechner

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by RdrEmCofE:
The infants of believing parent(s) are declared by scripture to be 'Holy' 1 Cor. 7:14, It is according to the faith of just one or both parents that their child is rendered 'holy to God' and not 'unclean'. Therefore the child has a RIGHT to be baptised as a sign and seal of its associate membership of The Church of Jesus Christ, who died for him/her.

But isn't that the problem, when people bring their child to be baptised - possibly due to family custom - but seem to have no idea of the Faith and have no desire to be part of the Visible Church? Is such a baptism in any way meaningful?

I know you will say that they have shown some faith merely by asking for the baptism, and that we shouldn't try to judge what's going on in peoples' hearts and minds. There's truth in that, but it seems a bit of a "let-out" to me, if I'm honest.

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:


We had a difficulty in my last church when a lady who had been christened in the church many years earlier wished to be re-baptised.

The story you relate here is a clear example of what I was saying above, that ordinary people give these rituals their own meanings, rather than abiding by the official ones produced by their denominations.

The churches acquiesce to unorthodox re-baptisms for pastoral reasons, as you say, but I think it's also about pragmatism; they don't want to lose or even just offend people who would otherwise walk away. Infant baptisms for children born to non-religious parents are approached in the same way, ISTM.

Churches of all kinds now operate in a buyer's market, whether they like it or not.

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Baptist Trainfan
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My present church's statement, thrashed out after a "sticky patch" some years ago. I wasn't there at the time:

"Worship reflects the inter-denominational composition of the congregation. ... Infant and believer’s baptism and infant dedication are practised. It is a Church decision not to re-baptise as believers those baptised as infants, in this way we demonstrate very clearly that we accept and respect first baptism, whichever that may have been." I may add that we do strongly urge Thanksgiving/Blessing as an alternative to baptism for parents who are not part of our worshipping community, and do not want parents to make promises they do not understand or feel they cannot realistically keep.

[ 01. January 2018, 16:05: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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cliffdweller
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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
I'm uncomfortable with this "make a personal commitment" language to which credo-baptism is so often tied. Faith is something some people ease in and out of, without any points of making anything. What are people exactly committing themselves to? What does it mean?

My denomination has language in our Directory of Worship that I think reflects the theological truth behind both forms of baptism:

quote:
Both believers and their children are included in
God’s covenant love. The baptism of believers witnesses
to the truth that God’s gift of grace calls for our grateful
response. The baptism of our young children witnesses to
the truth that God claims people in love even before they
are able to respond in faith. These two forms of witness
are one and the same Sacrament.



[ 01. January 2018, 16:15: Message edited by: cliffdweller ]

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"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid." -Frederick Buechner

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Eutychus
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As a credobaptist I object to the "gotcha" kind of mentality that essentially seems to declare a monopoly over the baptismal status of anyone baptised as an infant without so much as their say-so.

My discomfort is not aided by one RC chaplain of my acquaintance vigorously going round poaching even protestant chapel attendees in prison in order to get them baptised in prison, which I have other objections to generally.

Inasmuch as the RC have also developed renewals of baptismal vows for believers that for all intents and purposes look exactly like a baptism without the water*, I think this smacks of double standards.

All that said, our church is probably rare in France in having evangelical praxis but not requiring believers' baptism for membership. I would respect somebody's infant baptism if they have gone on to confirmation and if it made sense to them, but I wouldn't prevent them being baptised as a believer on the basis of this representing their own affirmation of their faith.

(On one occasion I resolved a crisis with a young man just under 18 seeking believers' baptism amid strong, almost superstitious family objections by tackling the subject along these lines, to everybody's satisfaction).

New spanner in the works: how many of you would accept a JW baptism as valid? [Two face]

==
*in much the same way as many evangelical churches have developed "dedication" services for babies that look very similar to infant baptisms minus the water...

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Let's remember that we are to build the Kingdom of God, not drive people away - pastor Frank Pomeroy

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mr cheesy
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I once went to a service of baptism in an Anglican cathedral where the Dean (at the time) had links to HTB. There were a bunch of baptism candidates, some were "reaffirmers", some were being done as adults for the first time.

Although the difference was noted during the service, it was tricky to tell what it was in practice. The actual dunking appeared to be exactly the same.

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arse

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Jengie jon

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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Perhaps, but the term "conditional baptism" is unknown in (most) Nonconformist circles. And wouldn't it be telling a lie to baptism conditionally if you knew for a fact that the person had already been baptised?

I would check with your URC colleagues. Some of them from Northern will have been trained up in URC praxis by a teacher who I know darn well knew about conditional baptism and evidence suggests that Westminster students knew of it as well around that time. All right it is the senior ones now but ...

fyi it would have been taught due to it in many circumstances being a work around for the knot the URC is about Baptism. Since the merger with the Churches of Christ we have acknowledged dual integrities with respect to Baptism but have not allowed re-baptism.

Jengie

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"To violate a persons ability to distinguish fact from fantasy is the epistemological equivalent of rape." Noretta Koertge

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by Eutychus:

New spanner in the works: how many of you would accept a JW baptism as valid? [Two face]

I'd be interested to know what liturgy is employed in a JW baptism....

When my mother was a girl, she was baptised in a Jesus-Name Pentecostal ceremony. (This means that the formula 'In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit...' wasn't used.) But when she joined the British Methodist Church years later, she was accepted into membership and lay leadership without any requirement for re-baptism.

Ignorance on the part of the Methodist minister and congregation simplified matters, I expect. My mother herself wouldn't have presented her baptism as a problem, because for her it wasn't, and how was anyone else to know? I do know she'd have been very angry if anyone had suggested that her baptism was unacceptable.

OTOH, if she'd wanted to be re-baptised, she could have made a case for it. The Methodists would probably have obliged.

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Tortuf
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What happens if you get baptism wrong?
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Baptist Trainfan
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The baby/adult candidate drowns. Or stays dry.

[ 01. January 2018, 17:06: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Gamaliel
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If I can say this reverently, God knows, Tortuf ...

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

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mousethief

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quote:
Originally posted by Eutychus:
Inasmuch as the RC have also developed renewals of baptismal vows for believers that for all intents and purposes look exactly like a baptism without the water*, I think this smacks of double standards.

"Baptism without the water" makes as much sense as "Meal without the food."

Shifting the subject slightly, the credo-baptist, from my understanding, isn't "re-baptising" because a non-believing baptism, to them, isn't a baptism at all. They're baptising, rightly understood, for the first time.

quote:
in much the same way as many evangelical churches have developed "dedication" services for babies that look very similar to infant baptisms minus the water...
Because deep down they know that babies should be baptised, but because of their misguided beliefs can't bring themselves to do it.

Baptism is the rite of entering the Kingdom. Or as St. Paul says somewhere, "as many as have been baptised into Christ have put on Christ." The paedo-baptist says, why should this grace be denied our infants? But we all know the arguments on both sides, don't we?

ETA:

quote:
Originally posted by Tortuf:
What happens if you get baptism wrong?

What exactly would that look like?

[ 01. January 2018, 17:15: Message edited by: mousethief ]

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This is the last sig I'll ever write for you...

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cliffdweller
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quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:

quote:
in much the same way as many evangelical churches have developed "dedication" services for babies that look very similar to infant baptisms minus the water...
Because deep down they know that babies should be baptised, but because of their misguided beliefs can't bring themselves to do it.

A bit of pot-stirring there, mouse thief.

Harkening back to our PCUSA statement quoted above, I prefer to think that both traditions are recognizing that there are some significant milestones on our faith journeys that need to be recognized.

• As noted in the PCUSA statement, God's gift of grace comes to us long before we are able to respond or acknowledge it. Like an infant is completely dependent on his/her parents for life itself, we are all utterly dependent on God's gracious inbreaking. Therefore, both paedobaptists and credobaptists agree that infancy is an appropriate time to recognize and celebrate the invisible work of God in coming to us, loving us, long before we were able to recognize it. Paedobaptists do this thru infant baptism, credobaptists do this thru infant dedication.

• As noted in the PCUSA statement, God's gift of grace always calls for a response of faith-- our "yes" to God's gracious gift. Therefore, both paedobaptists and credobaptists agree that it is appropriate to celebrate the believers' growing, decisive response with a public affirmation of faith. Paedobaptists do this thru confirmation, credobaptists do this thru believer baptism.

Personally, I'm good with that. But I'm coming from a far more Zwinglian understanding of the sacraments.

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"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid." -Frederick Buechner

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Tortuf
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quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:


quote:
Originally posted by Tortuf:
What happens if you get baptism wrong?

What exactly would that look like?
My point.
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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:
quote:
in much the same way as many evangelical churches have developed "dedication" services for babies that look very similar to infant baptisms minus the water...
Because deep down they know that babies should be baptised, but because of their misguided beliefs can't bring themselves to do it.
That's naughty, so let me be naughty in return. A "true Baptist" would say that they follow OT practice (eg Samuel) in offering Dedication/Thanksgiving; they might also say that centuries of indiscriminate wrong practice have led to families expecting "something" from the Church for their babies, so they offer Dedication as a concession to that expectation.

Of course that's a cynical explanation, as Dedication is very much an opportunity of welcoming the child into the church family; however it is not regarded as a rite which confers grace, beyond the blessing that is invoked in the prayers.

[ 01. January 2018, 17:30: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Tortuf:
quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:


quote:
Originally posted by Tortuf:
What happens if you get baptism wrong?

What exactly would that look like?
My point.
Presumably by being done in some way which is "unauthorised" or "invalid" - whatever that may mean.

[ 01. January 2018, 17:33: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Tortuf
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How about God is not persuaded, or disuaded, because of magic words, magic rituals, or anything else we humans can do.

How about God loves us not because we get things "right" but because God is good and God is love.

So, getting baptism "wrong" is . . . just possibly not all that much of an issue for God.

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Baptist Trainfan
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[Overused]
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Diomedes
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Thankyou Tortuf. Wise words. [Overused]

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Distrust simple answers to complicated questions

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Nick Tamen

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quote:
Originally posted by Gramps49:
I note that it is not all that unusual to see a person moving from, say the American Baptist tradition, to the Southern Baptist tradition to be rebaptized, though I do not think it is expected.

There are Baptist churches in these parts where it would be expected, even for people moving from one Southern Baptist church to another. And it can also happen when people “recommit themselves to Christ.”*

quote:
Most mainline churches they are moving away from the term "confirmation" to "Reaffirmation of the Faith." It is not something people do in their early teens but throughout their lives.
Our Official Books call the service “Reaffirmation of the Baptismal Covenant for Those Making a Profession of Faith.” In Real Life, everyone calls it confirmation. (There are also “Reaffirmation of the Baptismal Covenant” liturgies to mark occasions of growth in faith and joining a congregation, as well as liturgies for congregational reaffirmation and reaffirmation in the context of pastoral counseling—the closest we have to a rite of confession. All of these are seen as distinct from confirmation.)


* These are not intended as scare quotes, but rather just indicate the phrase commonly heard.

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Bishops Finger
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O, there are so many things, about which we get our knickers in a twist, which are probably not much of an issue with God....

....but which make these boards both entertaining and instructive.

[Two face]

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:
Deep down [Evangelicals] know that babies should be baptised, but because of their misguided beliefs can't bring themselves to do it.

I think evangelical churches offer dedication services because that's what some church members and enquirers want. IOW, it's demand-led. Baby welcoming rituals are universal, after all.

AFAIK some CofE churches offer infant dedications as an alternative to infant baptisms. The idea is to provide something welcoming for parents who have no intention of raising their babies in a specifically 'Christian' manner, as the baptismal vows demand.

In reality, though, I've read that it's largely churchgoing parents in the CofE who take up the option of an infant dedication, while non-religious parents who turn up at church still mostly prefer a 'proper' baptism. I can kind of see why. These parents are all interpreting the ritual of infant baptism in their own way.

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