“It seems to me the Washington Monument is a symbol of America’s power. It has been the symbol of our great nation. We look at the symbol and we say ‘this is one nation under God.’ Now there’s a crack in it… Is that sign from the Lord? … You judge. It seems to me symbolic.”
Originally published in the Union Springs Herald on July 29, 2011.
Bird helpfully pointed out in his first post that both paedos and credos have a ritual both when a child comes into a believing family and when a child comes to a personal experience of faith. Credobaptists usually have a ceremony for dedicating an infant and then baptize that person when he or she later makes a profession of faith. Paedobaptists baptize their children in infancy and then have a ceremony of confirmation (of the baptism) when the young person later professes faith in Christ. The question for Bird then is: where do you put the water? Sooner or later? The first ritual or the second?
Let me conclude by saying that the position Bird is articulating is really the paedobaptist position, which is probably why his reflections appeal to me. I long for credobaptists to recognize the validity of the baptisms not only of my own children but of all covenantal children. To my knowledge, all Protestant paedobaptists not only baptize newly believing and previously unbaptized adults, we also recognize the baptisms of other Christian denominations regardless of whether they are paedobaptistic or credobaptistic. So, the change for which Bird is calling would require much more give from the credobaptists than from we paedobaptists. That kind of give would be an essential change in a fundamental tenent of credobaptistic theology and a monumental denial of a previously long held view. And while unity and affirmation are desireable here, I don’t expect my credo friends to change their minds on a matter in which they have such deep conviction. So I’m not holding my breath.
What do you think? Is Matera’s proposal helpful? What are its strengths? Weaknesses?