Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Initiation into the the Society of the Church

Here is a definition of baptism that I like a great deal. It seems to me to embrace the biblical data on the matter, and is not truncated as it often is when people speak of baptism today. It is Calvin's definition. And if it seems like I'm slavishly following Calvin of late, please just note that it is his 500th birthday and I simply want to honor his memory. Besides, the Institutes have been my breakfast every morning, alongside my daily reading from Scripture, during this past year because of a reading plan to mark the quincentenary of the reformer's birth.

So, here it is, from Book 4, Ch. 15, Sect. 1: "Baptism is the sign of the initiation by which we are received into the society of the church, in order that, engrafted in Christ, we may be reckoned among God's children."

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