(d) The reasoning by which it is supported is unscriptural, unsound and dangerous in its tendency.
First, in assuming the power of the church to modify or abrogate a command of Christ. This has been sufficiently answered above. Secondly, in maintaining that infant baptism takes the place of circumcision under the Abrahamic covenant. To this we reply that the view contradicts the New Testament idea of the church, by making it a hereditary body, in which fleshly birth and not the new birth, qualifies for membership. ?As the national Israel typified the spiritual Israel, so the circumcision which immediately followed, not preceded natural birth, bids us baptize children, not before but after spiritual birth.? Thirdly, in declaring that baptism belongs to the infant because of an organic connection of the child with the parent, which permits the latter to stand for the former and to make profession of faith for it, germinal faith already existing in the child by virtue of this organic union and certain for the same reason to be developed the child grows to maturity. ?A law of organic connection as regards and the child, such a connection as induces the conviction that the character of the one is actually included the character of the other, as the seed is formed in the capsule.? We object to this view that it unwarrantably confounds the personality of the child with that of the parent. It practically ignores the necessity of the Holy Spirit?s regenerating influences in the case of children of Christian parents and presumes in such children, a gracious state which facts conclusively show not to exist.
What takes the place of circumcision is not baptism but regeneration. Paul defeated the attempt to fasten circumcision on the church, when he refused to have that rite performed on Titus. But later Judaizers succeeded in perpetuating circumcision under the form of infant baptism, and afterward of infant sprinkling (McGarvey, Com. on Acts). E. G. Robinson: ?Circumcision is not a type of baptism. It is purely a gratuitous assumption that it is so. There is not a word in Scripture to authorize it. Circumcision was a national, a theocratic and not a personal, religious rite. If circumcision is a type, why did Paul circumcise Timothy? Why did he not explain, on an occasion so naturally calling for it, that circumcision was replaced by baptism??
On the theory that baptism takes the place of circumcision, see Pepper, Baptist Quarterly, April, 1857; Palmer, in Baptist Quarterly, 1871:314. The Christian Church is either a natural or hereditary body or it was merely typified by the Jewish people. In the former case, baptism belongs
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