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Making Application

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Stephen Johns

on 7 August 2016

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Transcript of Making Application

Making Application
It is a Symbol
The Mode Matters
It is only for Believers
and the Church
Membership is Assumed
The Church Voted
There was Authority to Determine Elders and Deacons
There was a known number of members
The Church is held accountable for its members
The Church has authority over its members
Baptism is Connected to Membership
Matthew 28:18-20

“18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 16:18-19

“18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
Baptism and Local Church Membership are both Symbols
Putting it Together
Baptism should be applied only to people where there is a reasonable confidence that this person is a Believer.

Baptism should only be applied by the local church.

Baptism should accompany becoming a member of that local church.

Baptism should be by immersion only.

The only recognizable baptism is of a Believer by immersion following their conversion.
Practical Concerns
Children's Baptism
It is clear that as an Elder I should only ever baptize a person where I have a reasonable confidence that the person is a Believer
It can be notoriously difficult to discern the conversion of a child.
It is clear that baptism and local church membership are linked together as demonstrations of conversion and submission to Christ.
To baptize a person and not have them unite in membership is to split the Great Commission in an unhealthy way.
Membership in a local church is at its essence a submission to the spiritual authority of the church.
A child is clearly and biblically under the spiritual authority and is to be submitted to their parents.
Baptism, as much as possible, should only be one time for a clearly converted person publically confessing their union with Christ.
Baptizing children has commonly resulted in later rebaptisms.
Baptism does not impart grace. To delay baptism for a child does not hinder the growth and progress of a truly converted child.
Baptizing too young can easily become a stumblingblock later to one that is not converted.
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