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The 71,2 Question of the HEIDELBERG
CATECHISM. Q. W
as certainly wash us with his Blood and Spirit, as toe have been washed with the Water of Baptism?
A. In the Institution of Baptism, (the Words 66 whereof are these, Go, and teach all Nations, bap** tizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son, and *s the Holy Ghoft; be that believeth, and is baptized, " shall be saved; but he that believeth not fall be dam" med. This Promise is also mentioned in those 4 Places where the holy Scripture calls Baptism,
The Wafhing of our Regeneration; and, The Clean ing us from our Sins."
GH The 72d Question of the HEIDELBERGH
the outward Baptism of Water,
Q. Who are they that are in Error about the Doctrine of Baptism?
A. The Papists and Annabaptists.
A. That Baptism is absolutely necessary to Salva- ti tioni; because Baptism, according to their Opinion, 2 fhould include Grace. Q. How do you confute this Error?
th A. As follows; 1, Because Baptifm is a Sacra- G. ment, i. e. a Sign and Seal of Grace, Rom. iv. 11. ady, Because there is a Distinction between the outward Washing of Water, and the inward Working of the Spirit, i Pet. iii. 21. 3dly, Because we find, Mark xvi. 16. He that believeth, and is baptifed, fball be saved; but he that believeth not, shall be damned, (but
viii. 13, 24.,
not that he who is not baptized shall be damned). Examples and Experience likewife Thewthe contrary, fuch as the Malefactor on the Crofs, was not baptized; yet Jesus said unto him, Luke xxii. 43. This Day thou fhalt be with me in Paradife. Lydia believed, and was regenerated before she was baptized ; and Simeon the Conjurer, was baptized, but not converted, Afts Q. But hath not Jésus faid, John iii
. 5. Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a Man be born of Water, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God?
1. We must not understand by this, the outward Water in Baptism, but the Working of the Holy Ghost in the Elect, purifying their Souls internally, even as the Water doth externally; as, Mat. iii. 11. He fall baptize you with the Holy Ghot, and with Fire, which signifies to be baptized by the Spirit, operating like Fire; and if there is indeed a Reference to Baptifin in these Words, it will by no Means follow, that Baptism is Regeneration ; but then the Senfe of the Passage must be thus: Whosoever would become a regular Member of the Kingdom of God, must not only be baptized, but as ever he desires to share in its fpiritual and eternal Bleffings, must experience the renewing and fanctifying Influences of the Holy Spirit on his Soul, to cleanse it from the Power of Corruption, and to animate and quicken it to a spiritual and divine Life. Or better to understand by that Water, the holy Gospel, which cleanseth the Soul of them that believeth, and by which Means the Holy Ghof regenerates the Sinner, 1 Pet. i. 22. Pf. xix. 8. The 73d Question of the HeIDELBERG
Washing of Regeneratian and cleansing fromSin? “ A. It isn ot without great Reason, that God thus
“ expresseth himself; for he does not only teach us « thereby, that as the Filth of the Body is clean“ sed by Water, so our Sins are expiated by the « Blood and Spirit of Chrift; but much more to « assure us, by this divine Token and Pledge, that
we are as really washed spiritually from our Sins, " as we are outwardly with the Water of Baptism.' The 74th Question of the HeideLBERG
CATECHISM. Q. ARE Infants to be baptized also ?
“ A. Yes ; for since they belong, as well as " the Adult, to the Covenant and Church of God, " and also since the Remission of Sins by the Blood « of Christ, and the Holy Ghost, which brings forth " Faith, are not less promised to them, than to the * Adult; they ought likewise by Baptism (as a
Seal of the Covenant) to be incorporated into the of Church of God, and be distinguished by that “ Means from the Children of Unbelievers; as is « practised under the old Covenant, by Circumcision, " in the Stead of which, Baptism has been instituted * in the new Covenant.
Q. What is the Opinion of the Annabaptists of Baptism?
A. They teach to the contrary of our Doctrinc, that the Administration of Baptism to Children is, vain, and contrary to Scripture ; and that the Adult only ought to be baptized.
Q. How doth it appear that the Infant Seed of Believers ought to be baptized?
A. It appears by this, that they being Abraham's Seed, were taken into Covenant with God, and ordered to have the
Sign of the Covenant applied to them; and that Grant was never reversed. Gen. xvii. 10. And I will establish my Covenant between me and thee, and thug Seed after thee, &c. Every Man Child among you shall be circumcised.
Q. But was not that the Covenant of Works? And will not hold to infer their Privilege under the Covenant 7 of Grace?
A. No. For God never did, nor will become a God by Way of special Interest, to any People, by Virtue of the Covenant of Works, since the Breach of it by the Fall.
Q. But if it were the Covenant of Grace, how doth it appear the Right of Believers Infants, being fill the fame they were before in Abraham's Time?
A. It appears plainly from the Apostles -own Words and Arguments, Acts ii. 29. The Promise is to you, and to your Children, &c.
Q. Admitting Infants then to have been Members of God's visible Church among the Jews, How doth it apo pear that they are so now, as God has cast them off?
A. The Membership and Privileges are as sure and ample to them now, that are the Children of Gentile Believers, as ever they were to the Jewish Infants. Rom. xi. 17: If some of the Branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild Olive Tree, wert grafted in among f them, and with them partakes of the Root and Fatness of the Olive Tree.
Q. How doth it appear further, that they are within ihe Covenant ?
A. By their being pronounced Holý, i Coro vil 14. Elle were your Children unclean, but now are they boly.
Q. As Infants are not capable to covenant with God, or perform coverant Duties, why therefore should they be admitted to covenant Privileges ?
A. A Child now of eight Days old, is as capable of being admitted into Covenant with God, as Children of the fame Age were in Abraham's Days, and that they were then admitted, is manifeft.
Tel: Q. Although they were admitted to Circumcifion then, will it follow they may be so to: Baptism now, seeing that that Ordinance is abolished?
A. Yes ;
A. Yes; although the Ordinance of Circumcifion ceased, Baptism is come into it's Place, Col. ii. 10.11.
Q. But Circumcision was a Seal of the Covenant of Works, and the Argument will not hold good, of the Seal of the Covenant of Works, corresponding to the Seal of the Covenant of Gracea
A. Circumcision never was even intended to be a Seal of the Covenant of Works, but of the Righteousness of Faith, Rom. iv. II. And he received the Sign of Circumcifion, a Seal of the Righteousness of the Faith that he had yet being uncircumcised, &c.
Q. Why was not there an express Command in the New Testament to baptize Infants ?
A. There needed no such Command to be given, as their Privilege hath been fettled many Ages before, upon them, and never reversed by Chrift or his Apostles, but their former Right declared to continue Atill to them, Acts ii. 39. For the Promise' is to you, and to your Children. And it is manifest from AEts
. xvi. 15. 33. She was baptized and her Housholds, &c.
Q. Do not many: truft to Infant Baptism, as being their Regeneration, and so much Mischief is done?
A. They do fo; yet the Duty is not therefore to be neglected. The Preaching of Christ is to some a Stumbling Block; yet Christ must be preached notwithstanding Q. What is the first Inference you draw from hence?
A. That our Catechist has answered quite suitable to his Intention, to give his Disciple a plain Comprehension of Baptism, shewing clearly the Errors of the Adversaries, and that in this pure Doctrine only is a true Consolation for Believers.
Q. What is the fecond Inference ? 1 A. That all the Baptized are engaged to be the Lord's People, and to walk suitably to that Engages ment, Rom. vi. 4.
Q. What is the third Inference ?