"…all those who follow in my bloodline…"

Paedobaptism, the Baptism of children of Believers – as contrasted with Credobaptism, the Baptism of professing Believers. Both perspectives claim that it is a form of initiation rite of a person into a covenantal community – however, they disagree in what sort of Grace (if any) is being conveyed and what the fundamental meaning of the ceremony entails…

I only mention this because of a few events that have transpired of late. Each separate unto itself, but strangely connected to one another…

A common thread shared by each instance is the book William the Baptist by James Chaney, and the praise which has followed its reading – a common sentiment seemingly shared by all is that it has resolved the mind and conscience of its readers towards the issues of Baptism, touching both upon the mode as well as the meaning.

While I have not yet read the work myself, I cannot help but wonder at this small phenomenon…

I could easily dismiss it as being a confirmation bias on the part of the readers, each of whom claim to have been former Credobaptists that were swayed by the argumentation of the book but each of them having a vested self-interest in being thusly “swayed” – one of them being a “former Southern Baptist” whose husband is currently attending a PCA seminary; another whose background was in “mainstream Evangelicalism” but is now a Youth Minister in an OPC church; and still another, who describes her upbringing as “typical Baptist” is now an ardent espouser of Federal Vision doctrine… and so on and so forth.

However, I do not wish to so hastily renounce the viscosity of the arguments simply because my own presuppositions dismiss outright the validity of Infant Baptism and/or the mode of Aspersion (that is, “sprinkling”), thus providing my own set of cognitive biases. I neither wish to renounce the personal integrity of the individuals involved nor acquiesce to the implications of this book upon the minds of rational and sincere Brethren.

All the same, I do also see a sort of intellectual security in this general reliance upon tradition, as many a wise hoary head and ivy-strewn sanctuary have maintained this liturgical vanguard – while those of my ilk are often relegated to the “highways and the hedges” outside of the spacious scholastic arenas.

The “high church” mystique is an enchanting one, and the lore of ancient custom appeals to many – of which I am certainly no exception.

Besides, what parent wouldn`t love to be able to ascertain some dowry of a spiritual inheritance – that one could almost bequeath one`s own Faith to one`s descendants.


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