I could not decide over the holidays on which subject to write my church research paper on until I found out that my niece and two nephews were getting baptized on the upcoming weekend at their Catholic Church. I realized that my knowledge on water baptism is very limited and I have never really done any research on this interesting topic. So I hope to really be informed on this subject and learn something new. I will include new information as well as answer the questions given to me by my instructor. Let me begin by pointing out what the bible has to say on this subject.
Colossians 2:12 states, “Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him ...view middle of the document...
It states, “Baptism is not essential to salvation but is essential to obedience because Jesus commanded it (Hiscox). It is very clear that whenever both subjects of salvation and baptism are mentioned in the bible, we never read to be baptized first and then get saved. This statement alone has really made it very clear to me and has really sealed my stand on this topic. I could list a number of scriptures on the topic of Faith but I will move on to the next question, Should infants be baptized?
I was baptized as a baby so this question hits home. In my family it is such a big part of being an infant. I remember that as a child I was taught that is a child dies, the child will not go to heaven. That is a very scary thing to have to think about if you are a child and have never been baptized. Catholics seem to believe that baptism has some magical power to save a baby. They believe that the water itself washes away the original sin of the baby. This is what is called baptismal regeneration (Fedds). People try to make the point that Jesus was baptized at the age of 30 years old ((Luke 3:21-23) . But that is not a good argument on itself because then people would say that you can only be baptized at the age of 30.
Catholics also use scripture to make a case for infant baptism. They use scripture as Luke 18:15-16, Matt. 19:14, and Col. 2:11-12 where Jesus refers to baptism as the circumcision of Christ. “Since circumcision was done to children then this should also apply to children” states, The Catholic Church (Carr). I do not see how this is being used by Catholics to justify baptizing infants. We know that we need to have an understanding of both our sins and what Jesus has done for us to be able to fully know what the significance of it all is. This topic is so huge and could write a paper just on the topic of child baptism. What is the difference between baptism by immersion and sprinkling?
The word baptism comes from the Greek word “Baptisma” which is the process of immersion,submersion and emergence. Immersion is defined this way, “to make fully wet, to cover wholly with fluid, hence to dip” (Camarin). How can people get this wrong? The instruction on how to baptize is clearly in the difinition of the word. The article that I quoted above gives the explanation that sprinkling started because of lack of water or convenience. I come from a Catholic background and when I ask a question about why they do the things they do I typically get “tradition” as a reason for some of the things they do. Baptism symbolizes our death, burial and resurrection to new life in Christ ( Romans 6:14, II Corinthians 5:17, Colossians 2:11-12 )(Cleave). That is a very good explanation for baptizing in immersion. We die so we are covered up in dirt not sprinkled with dirt as I read in this article. This topic of immersion really ties in with my next topic. What if a person is invalid or unable to physically be baptized the...