Should Infants be baptised?

United States
March 15, 2010 9:18am CST
One of the debates that I have witnessed is the question should infants be baptised (pedobaptism), my answer for this is NO! However this is debated within the Christian Church quite a bit. The reason some baptise is because it supposedly removes the original sin (as practiced by the Roman Catholic Church), though the bible does not say this and even Jesus waited to be baptised until he was older. The reason that I say that infants should not be baptised is because: 1. The baby cannot dedicate is life to Jesus, cannot confess his sins, and cannot be totally immersed in water. 2. The baby has not yet chosen (free will) to be a Christian in the first place nor has he or she professed their belief that there is a God and that Jesus is his son. 3. A baby does not know right from wrong and cannot make this choice (again free will) 4. A baby is already pure in the eyes of the Lord and free from all sin, it is not until that child can make the choice to sin on his or her own, and the choice to follow God on their own, which I believe is somewhere around 12 years old or so (currently researching this). 5. A baby does not have the capacity to understand why they are being baptised therefore baptising the baby is for the parents and not for the child. What do you think?
3 people like this
14 responses
• United Arab Emirates
21 Mar 10
Well I dont like to argue too much with you, but I would like to get some facts straight with you. 1) A baby is baptised to be made a child of God. It is true that this child does not know anything but this is the beginning of teaching his faith when he grows old. Baptism is a the Symbol of Jesus being baptised. When a child receives First Holy Communion he renouns his wows which he took at Baptism. When a baby is baptised the priest proclaims that now he is a child of God and he is released from devil. According to catholics, sometimes when a Non Christian is baptised they too are baptised in the same way as a baby. Therefore it is not necessary to be immersed in water becaused this is only a symbol. Well according to the bible Jesus quoted to St.Thomas You see and believe but how many beleive in me without seeing me. Our faith is based on belief and not proof.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Mar 10
Dont know who saint Thomas is but if you mean Thomas of the bible, he doubted that Jesus had returned and needed to see the scars to prove it, so therefore it is necessarry to be diserning which is said in the bible many many times. If you believe you should be able to prove it. Additionally a child does nto need to be saved God said the child already inherits the Kingdom of Heaven so he doesnt need to be saved. Secondly baptism does not make a child grow in his faith, teaching does/ Lastly and this is a big one, Jesus was 30 years old when he was baptised, if it is a symbol of Jesus being baptised and Jesus meant for babies to be baptised then why wasnt Jesus baptised before he turned 30 years old.
• United States
21 Mar 10
The bible said the blind leading the blind will fall into a ditch, this means if you believe and dont know why you believe then you will lead others into that ditch with you. period.
• United Arab Emirates
23 Mar 10
I get the feeling that you dont believe in Saints. The bible Thomas in our religion is known as St.Thomas. All I gather is that you want us catholics not to baptise our babies and let them be till they are big. Anyway it is done so I think I wont go any further. You should keep your belief to those who dont believe in Christ and try to make them believe in Christ rather than trying to change the beliefs of the Catholic Church. Good luck to you./
@ronaldinu (12445)
• Malta
15 Mar 10
Please let me reply with paragraphs quoted from Catholic websites. I don't intend to re-invent the wheel. These are arguments and counter arguments that I have heard over and over again. According to your statements, babies do not need any baptism because they are without sin. The Catholic Church teaches that all of us are born with original sin. Baptism cleanses only original sin in the case of infants and young children, since they are incapable of actual sin; and both original and actual sin in the case of older persons.]http://www.catholic.com/library/Infant_Baptism.asp Peter explained what happens at baptism when he said, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:38). But he did not restrict this teaching to adults. He added, "For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, every one whom the Lord our God calls to him" (2:39). We also read: "Rise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name" (Acts 22:16). http://www.catholic.com/library/Infant_Baptism.asp Even we find Jesus’s words in the Bible when he says "Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 19:14). So I don’t see that infant baptism is wrong or is going against Jesus’ teachings. In Luke’s Gospel perhaps it is more explained clearly: "Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them to him, saying, ‘Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of God’" (Luke 18:15–16). Bible ever say that infants or young children can be baptized? The indications are clear. In the New Testament we read that Lydia was converted by Paul’s preaching and that "She was baptized, with her household" (Acts 16:15). The Philippian jailer whom Paul and Silas had converted to the faith was baptized that night along with his household. We are told that "the same hour of the night . . . he was baptized, with all his family" (Acts 16:33). And in his greetings to the Corinthians, Paul recalled that, "I did baptize also the household of Stephanas" (1 Cor. 1:16). Questions 2,3,5 focus on the point that a baby does not have the cognitive level to take his or her decision. So there is no free will! We don't ask a baby if it wants to eat. We just feed him or her. We don't ask a baby if it wants its diaper changed, we simply change the diaper. We don't ask a baby if it needs a bath, we simply give the baby a bath when it is dirty. We take these simple and logical actions to physically clean up a baby. Catholics think it is even more important to do the same thing spiritually, through baptism. We need to let our Lord wash away the "original sin" from the baby. http://www.davidmacd.com/catholic/infant_baptism.htm If when they grow up, they decide that they don’t want to belong to the Catholic religion than baptism was only a ceremony that does not make any sense in their life. No one is going to force them to stay in the Catholic Religion out of their own free will. I do believe that if a plant has to be nurtured since when it is planted, even a young baby should be nurtured spiritually from such a young age. Then it all depends on the individual if he wants to embrace Jesus or not.
• United States
15 Mar 10
First of all this in the Luke 18 passage this is saying let the children come, which means that they have nothing to hinder them from coming to God period, so not being baptised is certainly a hinderance which children do not have. In the Acts 2:38 it say repent, a baby cannot repent and you cannot repent for them, in order to repent you must be able to make the decision to do so. Again while in Acts 2:39 it says the promise is to your children it does not say that those children are not grown ups, it just says children. But in Acts 22:16 it says to rise which means get up which a baby cant do and call on Jesus name another thing a baby cant do. You must be able to repent that is the most important part Acts 8:12 "But when they believed Phillip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus, they were baptised, both men and women." In addition this is pointed out in Ephesians 4:11-15 " It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare Gods people for works of service, sot hat the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and the craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will all grow up into him who is the Head, that is Christ. Additionally if you are baptised simply to symbolize that one is cleansed that is not a way to clean a person of sins, the person must be able to believe and to have faith in the Lord, a child cannot do this.
@ronaldinu (12445)
• Malta
15 Mar 10
Our discussions is serving me to refresh my theological course notes! It is clearly evident that Catholics and other Christians have different notions of baptism. For Catholics Baptism is a sacrament In the Middle Ages some groups such as aldenses and Catharists rejected infant batpism. The historic Christian Church has always held that Christ’s law applies to infants as well as adults, for Jesus said that no one can enter heaven unless he has been born again of water and the Holy Spirit (John 3:5). His words can be taken to apply to anyone capable of belonging to his kingdom. He asserted such even for children: "Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 19:14). http://www.catholic.com/library/Infant_Baptism.asp Were Only Adults Baptized? - The answer is no. There are several quotations from the Acts that not only adults were baptised but even their household which included their children!
• United States
15 Mar 10
Again the scripture that says let the children come to me and do not hinder them, means simply that nothing not even baptism will keep a child from being admitted to Heaven which means that baptising them has absolutely nothing to do with getting them into Heaven. Until they are old enough to actually go to the water and repent of their sins which the bible says is a major part of being baptised they are not cleansed of sins that they did not commit.
@Margajoe (4720)
• Germany
21 Mar 10
I think everyone should do what they feel is right. Some people feel the need to protect there infant, by batising them. Why not? It won't hurt the baby, and the parents feel good about it. Leave them in there judgement. Let people be happy, have respect.
• United States
21 Mar 10
I understand what you are saying and thank you, not really telling them they cant do as they please with their child, just want an answer to the question, and I have yet to get one. But thank you. One of the things I dont understand is blind faith. The bible does not say that babies should be baptised, but because some priest says it is so then these people will blindly follow that as the truth without ever finding out if it is what the bible actually said and there is something wrong with that. One of my friends here is a Catholic and he knows a lot about why things are done, I appreciate his comments, but those who say they should do it because they only need believe with no proof are the ones that have no idea what the bible says.
1 person likes this
@Margajoe (4720)
• Germany
21 Mar 10
Ahah, blind faith, I see your point. Seen alot of church going people that were like that in my time. They would believe everything the priest or pastor was saying. Even they are human. Sometimes when I read the Bible it would be totally different as to how the Priest interpitated it. I don't beleive everything I hear. I have to see it for myself first. The Bible often gets misinterpitated. That is sad. The Bible should be read as a whole, not just a chapter at a time. Even in the Bible things change while time goes by. But no one wants to see this. God makes you understand what is needed for you. Not the Priest or Paster alone. That is the beauty of the Bible. It can be read in so many ways. Like a magical book of Law and order. Everyone seems to translate it in there own way to there own standards. That is why I think it is safe to say, that everyone should do what they feel is best. When it is done in Love, it can't be a zin. Take care.
• United States
21 Mar 10
Thank you for your comments.
@barehugs (8986)
• Canada
16 Mar 10
Protestantism may not be as passionate about Baptism as are other Organized Religions. I was born Presbyterian, but never Baptized, and as an adult I think, (you asked, remember?) baptism antiquated, and passe'. My four sons are grown, married, and have children of their own. I'm very proud of my unbaptized family, and wouldn't have it any other way!
• United States
16 Mar 10
While I respect your opinion and I say you do as you please, but one of the reason Jesus did it is to show you that you should, remember he had no sin, nothing to wash away, he was showing his people what they should do in order to save themselves. But I am not telling you what to do just letting you know the facts.
@barehugs (8986)
• Canada
17 Mar 10
Yes I think she did!
@hagirl (1296)
• United States
18 Mar 10
I believe that a child cannot understand the capacity of religion at the baby age.... It is our responsibility as parents to raise are children up respectfully and morally no matter what kind of religion we practice.... A baby as you say is PURE in Gods eyes and therefore cannot be held accountability for something it does not understand .... That is why you have them in your faith early so they can establish responsibility for the actions and learn right from wrong that is already established in the home.
• United States
27 Mar 10
Absolutely, and when they are of the right age you let them choose what they want to be, that way when they choose Jesus they do so for themselves and when they are baptized they truly mean it. Thank you!
• United States
17 Mar 10
I see nothing wrong in baptizing babies with the idea of making them a member of the community of faith. However, I don't believe infant baptism has anything to do with their future acceptance of Jesus as Lord and Savior. I personally believe baptism is important because Jesus said we should do it, but in the "great commission" Jesus said in this order: (1) go (2) make disciples (3) baptize (4) teach them to obey. Since a disciple is one who is a believer in a particular something, it seems to me as though Jesus is saying make them believers before you baptize them.
• United States
17 Mar 10
There should be no limitations or condition place on your membership in any particular religion of God. The person should be able to become a member of the church period. Baptism however is a part of your commitment to christ. My favorite list You need to repent. Be baptised in the name of the father, of the son and the holy spirit You need to go and sin no more (or at least try not to) You need to learn the Word of God You need to love your neighbor (which means everyone) You are commissioned to spread the word of God None of those things can be done as a baby and I am not even talking about children just babies.
16 Mar 10
for me baby cant baptized it because he/she cant understand what is baptism. because baptism must be understand it is way that you accepted God in your life and you are truly sincere to follow Jesus... when we baptize we merge our sin in a water symbolizing that we are surrendering our life unto the Lord. for me we can dedicate our babies unto the Lord which offering his/her life to God. and i believed God blessed our children if we dedicate unto Him. yes our babies cant know what is right and wrong but he has a free will. yes baptising is not for our child it is parents desires only.
• United States
16 Mar 10
I believe this too. Dedication means that as long as I have this child and he is completely dependent on me, I dedicate his life to you Lord, until he is old enough to make the decision for his self. That is what a true dedication is, because that would be the whole true and you would not be making promises to God that your child cant keep. However, Baptism means that the child is recognising Jesus as his lord and savior and promising that he will follow in the ways of God for the rest of his life, however what baby can do that. So I truly agree with you.
@madteaparty (2762)
• Japan
16 Mar 10
I agree that babies shouldn't be baptised, as their parent's shouldn't choose their faiths in their place. A kid should wait until he or she is old enough to understand what's that about, and to choose if he or she would like to join that religion and be baptised or not. It's important to let them have a free will and to let them take the important choices in their lifes
• United States
16 Mar 10
Thank you for your comment and it is really true thank you.
@efc872 (1078)
• Jamaica
16 Mar 10
A practice like this tells you that Religion cannot be taken too serious, it's a joke.
• United States
16 Mar 10
This is really not how most of the Christians believe it is just some people therefore saying all religion cant be taken seriously is a joke.
• India
16 Mar 10
Most churches baptize infants but some insist on adult baptism. Most of the people consider it as a Christian sacrament signifying spiritual cleansing and rebirth. It is a kind of a ritual act, with the use of water, by which a person is admitted to membership of the Christian Church. In the Gospel according to Matthew at 3:1-11 we find the account of John the Baptist. Why John the Baptist went around baptizing people in those times? What was he trying to convey by immersing them in water of the river Jordan? People those days regarded John the Baptist as one of the prophets. We already know prophets came to announce the coming of a redeemer. People in his time too were waiting for a redeemer to come. They used to come and asked John the same age-old question. They asked him, when the redeemer would come. Though the exact words are not mentioned by any of the authors of the Gospel but the obvious answer is, "He would come in most suffocating times". Jesus himself said He would come again when there is war, famine, earthquake etc. People standing around John did not understand what sort of suffocating time it would be. He asked them to step into the water, he placed his hands gently on their heads, and held them under the water until the gasped for breath. Then he released their hands and told them, "I baptized you with water, but the one who comes after me would baptize you with fire." Just then, Jesus himself walked in and out of curiosity wanted to be baptized. John recognized him but Jesus insisted. Once John had submerged him in water, Jesus, immediately thereafter realized the purpose of his life. It is written, "The heavens were opened and the spirit of God descended upon him...” Jesus was enlightened that through more sufferings only he would know the true purpose of his life. Therefore, he went to fast into the desert for forty days. After he came back, he began Sermon on the Mount. In light of this fact you may decide, "Should infants be baptized". What purpose would it serve?
• United States
16 Mar 10
What sect of Christianity are you and who taught you about the bible, because your training while you have the informmation some of it is very confusing so I need to know if you are a certain type of Christian so that I can understand you.
@atv818 (1988)
• United Arab Emirates
4 Sep 10
Everything that you mentioned here is correct but baptism is only the beginning of things or events for a Catholic to do. I had all my 3 kids baptized at the age of 1. I know that they don't know the meaning of that. Baptism is not only for the actual person being baptized but also for the people around especially parent because they are also making a pact that they will raise the child to be a God-fearing person. Also, I don't think a 12 year old kid can really understand or make decision for him/her to choose God or not. I believe that a person should be of legal age for them to decide because he/she already knows the responsibilities and the respective consequences to their respective actions. Do what you must first for your kids and decide for them while they're still young. Just cross your fingers that you have raised them well enough to be making the right decision when they are older. Remember: Train your child as if you were preparing a prince for his future reign, for he will grow up to be one of the forces that shape the future of mankind.
@urbandekay (18312)
16 Mar 10
First let us ask, what does the word 'baptism' mean. The word in the original tongue means immersion. And this is how the early Church understood and practised it and how is Baptists and some over Churches still practice it. The case against infant baptism is overwhelming, those that advocate it, have failed to understand what baptism is. all the best urban
@scja16 (323)
• Philippines
15 Mar 10
You have a point. That baby can not decide yet of course he/she is still a baby. But for some these are tradition for them because they think that the baby needs the blessing from the baptism. But for me baptism is when you fully understand and accept God in your life as your savior. Well, I respect everyone's belief so I will just pray to enlighten us which is which and have more faith with God. God bless
• Philippines
15 Mar 10
You are correct and you have the point.The child can only baptized when they reach at least 7years old. Because on that age they will repent and answer to the question reveal by the reverend who baptized them. Since I am a catholic, I will follow to its doctrine and I am favor to baptized a baby.