A Clear Pattern Described by the Scriptures
Rob A. Edwards
It must needs be stated plainly that nobody embraces infant baptism without committing the logical fallacy of argumentum ad silentio. The argument from silence is making conclusions based on the absence of statements from history. An example of this- even from R. C. Sproul “…the New Testament does not explicitly exclude infants from the covenant…” What Sproul is saying in effect is that since the New Testament does not prohibit infant baptism then it must be alright. That is nothing more than a tacit assumption.
I do not mean to be rude at this point but there are plenty of things that ought not to be done that Scripture does not explicitly exclude. That is not a deficiency of Scripture, on the contrary it is a deficiency of man inventing new and improved ways to sin. Further- if argumentum ad silentio is roundly accepted concerning paedo-baptism, then where do we stop? If I can use it to justify this then I could use it to justify that, etc.
What is rather appropriate at this time is- to remember the Baptist confession of faith which states, “Those who do actually profess repentance towards God, faith in, and obedience to our Lord Jesus Christ, are the only proper subjects of this ordinance (baptism).”
Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
This verse links baptism directly to professing believers.
Acts 8:36-38 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.
Another clear example from Scripture of a confession of faith in Jesus Christ, and then a baptism.
Acts 2:41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.
The word received in this verse refers to Peter’s call to repent and be baptized.
Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized both men and women.
Belief preceding baptism of men and women in this verse.
Acts 18:8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with his entire household. And many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized.
Belief expressed by Crispus, his household, and many of the Corinthians and then baptism.
Now is the time for our readers to examine themselves and make a decision between an assumption and a clear pattern described by the Scriptures.