Does The Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed Require Baptismal Regeneration?

HB reader Mike asks whether this language requires Reformed believers to confess that baptism necessarily regenerates, i.e., is new life necessarily conferred at the moment of administration. It is widely claimed that “the ancient church taught baptismal regeneration.” In this context “regeneration” . . . Continue reading →

Strangers And Aliens (17b): As It Was In The Days Of Noah (1 Peter 3:18–22)

They were saved (διεσώθησαν) “through the waters” (δι᾿ ὕδατος). What Peter says is that it was in the midst of the circumstance of the flood or from the flood that Noah and his congregation were saved. Peter is not saying that the water was an instrument of their salvation. He has already said that the ark was the instrument or means of their salvation. If you have ever been whitewater rafting or found yourself in rough waters in a canoe, you understand. The rapid waters do not save anyone. No one was saved by the rising flood waters in Hurricane Katrina. They were saved in the midst of them by clinging to a rooftop or by a brave member of the Coast Guard (known affectionately as “Coasties”) dangling from a helicopter. Continue reading →

Heidelberg 71: What’s Baptism Got To Do With It?

Scripture does not say that baptism is the instrument of salvation any more than the Noahic flood or the Red Sea were the instruments of salvation. No, faith is the sole instrument of salvation. We were delivered through, i.e., out of of the flood and the Red Sea. Continue reading →

Does Baptism "Save"?

Merrit asks this question. Two friends and I have been talking about this verse (1 Peter 3:21) and passage for quite some time today. The more we seem to talk about it the more confused I seem to get about it.