My daily exploration of the Bible, taking it one chapter at a time. If I do it everyday, it'll take 1189 days.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Acts 16

Babies and baptism

Paul chose Timothy to join them. Paul saw a vision of a Macedonian begging that he come to Macedonia. So he went.

They, now with Luke, got to Philippi. They randomly told a chick the Gospel, and she and her family got baptised. So they stayed for a bit.

A demoned girl made a lot of money for others due to her prophecies. She started following Paul around til he got annoyed and cast out her demon. But the people who profited from her were annoyed, and got Paul and Silas in prison.

As they were singing in prison, there was an earthquake and everyone's cells opened, but no-one left. The jailer and his whanau got saved.

They tried free them quietly, but Paul wanted to make a fuss to embarrass them, cos they had beaten Roman citizens. So they were embarrassed and led them out of the city.

Key verse:
30-31. "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household."

My thoughts:
Hmmm... so... infant baptism... yea...

Interesting context here, because Paul actually says that if the jailer believes in Jesus, then not only he, but his whole household will be saved. Crazy aye. Probably behind this is the idea that the man is the leader of the family, and the concept of a man becoming a believer without his wife and kids was not really considered.

Anyway, there is this Biblical idea of community or corporate faith, which doesn't exists in modern protestantism. When faith is seen as only individual, then infant baptism doesn't make sense, but if it is considered legitimate to be part of a Christian community, then it's sweet.

I'll all for infant baptism.

Notice how often the simple spreading of the simple gospel comes up in Acts. It's pretty sweet. Lydia is basically the first 'victim' of street evangelism. So many Christians think that street or random evangelism is pointless and unhelpful, but it's very Biblical and can be very effective. You just need to truly believe that you bear good news.


Blogger Ash said...

My thoughts: You have left out a lot of stuff, I guess you can only ever cover so much. Talking only about two verses out of 40 is something that really bugs me. Earlier, Paul and friends are being guided round by the spirit which is awesome, all for being guided by the spirit. The Paul gets a vision and just goes and does it, dunno about you but I'd probably hesitate a little. Then getting thrown in jail because they spoil someone's hope of making money. This brings up for me an opportunity to reflect on the capitalistic nature of the church. How prepared is the modern church to stop people's money making for the gospel. But at the same time I don't see too much wrong with the spirit that was in her; it told the truth about Paul and friends. Then there's the story about the jailer and his conversion. Particularly when it comes to the bible I don't like to leave things out, it is important to embrace the whole story. And it's cool stuff too.
As for baby baptism, I don't know. I probably know too many people who were baptised as a child and have turned away. What then does baptism mean? I think everyone at some stage makes their faith their own.

8:21 pm

Blogger Pete W said...

It bugs you? ha! I gets pointless if you do many more. I try to do just one... I'm not trying to rewrite the Bible, just wanting to give the jist!

Yes, these days many people get baptised and walk away, but that doesn't make it illegitimate if you don't. I think the real problem is parent's who have nothing to do with Christian community, and are scarcely Christian themselves, but somehow think it important to get their kids baptised. If you are going to truly be a Christian family, I think that it is a wholly appropriate to baptise your children if you want.

2:35 pm


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