In that time, I have received hundreds of letters and at least a thousand emails about it. This subject is surprisingly controversial, even among Christians.
Scripture on Baptism I. Introduction The only sacrament mentioned by name in the Creed is baptism. We confess in the Creed: But baptism is also a point of disagreement not only between Protestants and Catholics, but also between various Protestant traditions.
The Catholic Church has always believed and taught that the grace by which we are born again comes to us through the sacrament of baptism. A small percentage of Protestants agree with the Catholic Church that through baptism we are regenerated with the life of God, cleansed of all our sins, and brought into the Kingdom of God.
One way that we resolve these disagreements about what baptism is and what it does, is to consider what the Church Fathers believed and taught about baptism. Here I am only focusing on what the Church Fathers say about the relation between baptism and regeneration.
I have kept my commentary to a minimum, providing only needed explanatory notes. After examining what the Church Fathers say about this subject, I then offer a brief summary of the New Testament teaching regarding the relation of baptism and regeneration.
Church Fathers on Baptism A.
Ignatius, bishop of Antioch, wrote a letter to the Church at Ephesus, while being escorted by Roman soldiers to Rome to be martyred. In that letter he writes: He was born and baptized, that by His passion He might purify the water. Epistle to the Ephesians18 This notion that Christ purified the waters is found in other Church Fathers as well, but this is the earliest record we have of the statement.
Christ was not purified by being baptized, since Christ was already pure. Rather, in His baptism, the waters were purified for our sake, that when we are baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we are purified, not by the removal of dirt from the body, but by the forgiveness of sin and the reception of the Life of God within us.
Here is a selection from the eleventh chapter of the Epistle of Barnabas A. The notion that baptism bears immediate fruit in the heart implies that baptism regenerates the baptized person.
Here is a selection from chapter 16 of the ninth Similitude of the Shepherd of Hermas early second century: The seal, then, is the water: And to them, accordingly, was this seal preached, and they made use of it that they might enter into the kingdom of God.
Not only that, but through baptism we are said to enter into the kingdom of God. Next, is the well known figure of St.
Here are some selections from his First Apology: As many as are persuaded and believe that what we teach and say is true, and undertake to be able to live accordingly, are instructed to pray and to entreat God with fasting, for the remission of their sins that are past, we praying and fasting with them.
They then are brought by us where there is water, and are regenerated in the same manner in which we were ourselves regenerated. For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water.
The reason for this we have received from the Apostles. In his Dialogue with Trypho the Jew, St. Justin contrasts Christian baptism with the Jewish baptism, writing: But the cisterns which you have dug for yourselves are broken and profitless to you.
For what is the use of that baptism which cleanses the flesh and body alone? Nor do we receive that useless baptism of cisterns, for it has nothing to do with this baptism of life.
Wherefore also God has announced that you have forsaken Him, the living fountain, and dug for yourselves broken cisterns which can hold no water.
Even you, who are the circumcised according to the flesh, have need of our circumcision; but we, having the latter, do not require the former. And we, who have approached God through Him, have received not carnal, but spiritual circumcision, which Enoch and those like him observed.
Justin is contrasting Christian baptism with Jewish baptisms. Justin, Christians receive spiritual circumcision through baptism.
Next consider the following quotation from St.
Theophilus bishop of Antioch from On the fifth day [of creation] the living creatures which proceed from the waters were produced, through which also is revealed the manifold wisdom of God in these things; for who could count their multitude and very various kinds?
In his work titled Against Heresies, he writes, And when we come to refute them [i.Testimony & Spiritual Witnesses. To a Latter-day Saint, a testimony is a personal witness of a gospel truth. This witness is received through the third member . 30 Minutes to a Shareable Testimony.
Below are some pointers for thinking through and writing your testimony. After you've read through them, set aside 30 minutes to answer the reflective questions and do the actual writing. What was the role of Christian community in your surrendering to Jesus? How did the people you mentioned above.
The Club features Christian testimonies of miracles, healings, and other inspirational stories. Steve's Testimony.
By: Steve Shirley I grew up in an upper middle class, church going family of four (one younger brother), belonging to the Lutheran church. George Muller: The Guardian of Bristol's Orphans (Christian Heroes: Then & Now) [Geoff Benge, Janet Benge] on heartoftexashop.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.
George Muller stared at the beggar girl. She was no older than five and was piggybacking her little brother. Her mother had died in the cholera epidemic sweeping England. Her father had never returned from the mines. The Most Ancient Testimony: Sixteenth-Century Christian-Hebraica in the Age of Renaissance Nostalgia [Jerome Friedman] on heartoftexashop.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.
The Most Ancient Testimony: Sixteenth-Century Christian-Hebraica in the Age of Renaissance Nostalgia.