Although I have been a Christian most of my life and have gone through Christian education my whole life, there are still some theological topics that I wrestle with. These are things I will I will probably continue to wrestle with. The topics I have trouble fully understanding are the views of baptism, the elect, security of salvation, and the roles of women in the church.
The first topic I have wrestled with is adult baptism versus infant baptism. I grew up in the reformed church, so I was baptized as an infant. When I was in fourth grade my family began attending a Wesleyan church, where they practice adult baptisms. Baptism involves identification with Christ in His death and resurrection. It is a public display of one’s decision to follow Christ. As a child I did not understand this. I had not yet made this decision to follow Christ. My parents have told me that I should get re-baptized now that I am an adult. Is it wrong for me to choose not to? Is there a right or wrong way of baptism? I agree believers should be baptized, but does the form fall outside of orthodoxy? I have had other people ask me similar things. They ask if they should get re-baptized since they were baptized as an infant.
I do not believe being baptized as a child will get one to heaven if he or she dies before understanding Christ and making the choice to follow Him. I see it as symbolic of one’s faith, but not a detrimental part of salvation. I want to believe I do not have to to get re-baptized. I would hope the way I live my life is always being a public display of my decision to follow Christ. For now this is going to be something I will have to pray about. Even though it does not seem like a big issue, it is one that continues to bother me and other people I know. As of now, I see making sure my life is reflecting Christ as more of a priority than getting re-baptized.
The second issue I struggle with is the idea of the elect. Election is God’s intentional choice to seek out some from among the lost. When I see this, I see it as God choosing us. If God is choosing the elect, does that mean they never had a chance to deny Him? I struggle with the idea of there not being free will. If there is no free will, then how can it really be love? If Christ is drawing us in and grace is irresistible, then I do not see believers choosing God out of their love for Him. I see it as inevitably responding to the Spirit’s effectual call.
I know I am not the only one who struggles with this. I have had many conversations with others on free will and the elect. Can both of them exist? If free will does not exist at the time of salvation, does it ever exist? Is it something we receive when we become Christians? Sometimes I wonder if they can both coexist. Maybe our logical minds have trouble comprehending this. In our notes, Acts 2:38 is given to show the calling as an invitation to faith and repentance. In order for something to be an invitation, there needs to be an aspect...