Does Acts 2:39 Support Infant Baptism?


One thought on “Does Acts 2:39 Support Infant Baptism?

  1. John Zylstra

    First, we need to be real charitable in this discussion. If the issue was indisputable, then it would have been settled ages ago. The fact is that children belong, or can belong (called and chosen) to God. We have no indication of an age at which this is impossible, and we know that He knows us before we were conceived. Circumcision and baptism were/are signs of God’s claim and promise. Circumcision was applied to infants, in some cases to infants who rejected God later and thus would have become disconnected from the promise. Circumcision was also applied to foreigners who became part of the people of Israel. Baptism is also a sign, it is not a magic incantation which performs some actual transformation. Rather it is a sign of God’s promise, and man’s transformation. An infant who from birth obeys and loves the Lord, and when aware, repents from wrong, is a child of Christian parents. Scripture said the children of believers are holy, distinguishing them from children of non-believers. We know there are exceptions, just as we know people who have been baptized as adults who either had false confessions or rejected their baptism.
    I agree this verse by itself does not prove infant baptism. But there is a very good case for infant baptism of believers who live the life of faith and obedience. God promised to reward that in a very special way. On the other hand, infant baptism has often been misused. When infants are baptized whose parents have a dead faith, and do not live in obedience and repentance, then that baptism becomes a custom or superstition, rather than a claim on the promise and faithfulness of God working through his people, the parents of their children. Neither water baptism nor circumcision saved anyone, but rather is a response to Christ’s claim on our lives, a sign of God’s faithfulness, and an indication of the obedience within the life of the believer as adult, or as parent of “holy” (set apart) children.


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