“There is not sufficient evidence from Scripture to justify the initiation of infant baptism…. Baptism is a Greek word, and may be translated immersion, as when we immerse something in water that it may be wholly covered…. they ought…to be wholly immersed, and then immediately drawn out, for that the etymology of the word seems to demand…. They who seriously want to be Christians, want to confess to the Gospel, in word as well as deed, these ought to have their names put in a ledger, and they ought to gather in a house apart for the purpose of prayer, the reading of the Scriptures, the administration of baptism, and to engage in still other Christian performances.”
A. In the Old Testament, we read that someone entered the Abrahamic Covenant, and the Old Covenant (Law of Moses) which God temporarily appended to it (Galatians 3:19), by being born into the lineage of Abraham (or by being sold into it) and then being circumcised (Genesis 17:9-12). Many in Christendom today say virtually the same thing in their teachings concerning infant baptism. Essentially, they assert that Christians enter the Covenant by being born into the right lineage (having Christian parents) and then being baptized. They claim that circumcision and baptism are just two outward signs of the same thing. Thus, they say, if infants were circumcised in the Old Testament, they can be baptized now. I’ll explain how this argument is based upon false assumptions and also deflate the proof texts infant baptizers often use to support their case.
“Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world” (1 John 4:2-3).
“For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist” (2 John 1:7).
Many people speculate about antichrist. Some speak of the Antichrist, referring to a particular person, such as the Pope or all of the Popes. Often, the Antichrist is seen as an end-time figure equated with the man of sin in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. While there may be some validity in calling the Pope and the man of sin Antichrists, John’s concept of antichrist is much broader. He is not speaking of a particular person, but says that many deceivers have entered the world and that each of these deceivers is an antichrist. Notice 1 John 2, verses 18 and 22: “Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time…. Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.”
For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
The proponents of infant baptism seem to use this Scripture as if it were a cornerstone of their doctrine. Almost all books and articles supporting infant baptism include this verse. But does Acts 2:39 support infant baptism or does it teach just the opposite?