Thursday, September 21, 2006

That One Line in Nicene Creed

The line reads
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

When I ask my credo-baptist friends if they affirm the Nicene Creed they normally say "yes". I guess most of them now a days do not recite the Apostle's Creed and so they think that the Nicene Creed is the same but just an elaboration of it... until I point out that one line.

The truth is that if you are a re-baptizer, you can not and should not affirm the Nicene Creed because that one line there is not something a re-baptizer believes, why? Because a re-baptizer does rebaptize persons who have received Christian baptism when they were a infants. Because for them the ability to profess faith is a pre-requisite for baptism. I think this misunderstands Sola Gratia.

The fact is that since a re-baptizer can not affirm the Nicene Creed, the re-baptizing Christian is not catholic. Understandably she not Catholic (big C), but she is not even catholic (small c) either.



Marco Vervoorst said...

The fact is that since a re-baptizer can not affirm the Nicene Creed, the re-baptizing Christian is not catholic.

But that person is a catholic by their baptism. :)

It all depends on what one says the first baptism is. What if the first baptism was not done in the Triune name? What if no water was used?

The issue is the need for a personal testimony and the baptism as the seal of the conversion. The baptism does nothing and adds nothing to salvation of the person. I think that the baptism issue the last thing stoping reformed Christians from the Nicene profession of faith.

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L P Cruz said...

Hi Marco,

Thanks for the input. Firstly yes, that re-baptizer's baptism was catholic (small c at least) if that was done in the name of the Triune God.

There is no such baptism without water involved. That is what baptism means - washing. How can I was you without water? A person who claims to have been baptized without water has not been baptized.

Let is us discuss, baptism of an infant. That is an epitome of sola gratia indeed. Because Jesus died for me before I could make a profession, so is baptism. In Acts 2:38 it is for the forgiveness of sins so the Nicene Creed states it that way. If you are an anglican, then your baptismal understanding is different from the lutheran one, though you baptize infants, would that be correct?

If a mother whose teenage child got in an accident and is in a coma and she wants you to baptize that teenager, would your faith allow you to baptize such a person? Mine will.