Baptism and Christening

What is the defining image of baptism?

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2007-06-15 10:28:10

The defining image of baptism is described in detail in Romans

chapter 6. Here Paul describes baptism as entering into Christ and

into his death. It is how one is crucified with Christ, buried with

Christ, and raised with Christ (Colossians 2:11-14). Baptism is how

one is freed from sin thereby becoming a servant of righteousness.

It is a pledge to keep a clear conscience before God, and God

therefore saves us in baptism (I Peter 3:21). It is how one

receives forgiveness of past sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit

(Acts 2:38). Baptism is how one is adopted as a child of God by

entering into Christ and putting Christ on (Galatians 3:26, 27).

Because baptism is a burial and resurrection with Christ, the

action of total immersion as practiced in the early church is in

keeping with this defining image, and the dramatic experience of

burying the old self and arising to new life is accomplished in

baptism as the defining event in one's life.

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