Home | Baptism - a requisite for Salvation irrespective of age | Infants are the first examples of birth from above or by the Holy Spirit, in the New Testament | The prophecy about New Testament baptism includes infants | The holy nation, House of Israel includes infants, the same terms apply to Christians in NT | Infants are part of the Kingdom just as those who convert to children are | God demands that all belong to Him from 8 days old | Children from 8 days old are heirs to the promise | Bible says Infants or little children are perfect believers even from the womb | Ephesians 6 verse1 Children obey your parents in the Lord | BUT DONT YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE FIRST TO BE BAPTIZED | Can children receive baptism based on the belief of their parents | Jesus cured infants as well He was physician to sick children as well | Children seen among the congregation following Jesus | HOUSEHOLDS BEING BAPTIZED IN THE NEW TESTAMENT | Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you | Necessity of birth by the Holy Spirit or Baptism of infants | But Jesus was Baptized as an adult | Evidence for Infant Baptism in the Church Fathers and Inscriptions | Conclusion | My other webpages


          1252. "The practice of infant baptism is an immemorial tradition of the Church. There is explicit testimony to this practice from the second century on, and it is quite possible that, from the beginning of the apostolic preaching, when whole 'households' received baptism, infants may also have been baptized. [Cf. Acts 16:15, 33; Acts 18:8; 1 Cor 1:16; CDF, instruction, Pastoralis actio: AAS 72 (1980) 1137-1156.]"


In his greetings to the Corinthians, Paul recalled that, "I did baptize also the household of Stephanas." (I Corinthians 1:16). (An angel spoke to Cornelius saying) "Send to Joppa, and have Simon, who is called Peter, brought here; and he shall speak words to you by which thou and all thy house shall be saved " (Later, when Peter arrived at (Cornelius' household) "... he ordered them to be baptized."(Acts 11:13b, 14; Acts 10:48a)


"And when she (Lydia of Thyatira) was converted by Paul's preaching. "She was baptized, with her household" (Acts 16:15). The Philippian jailer whom Paul and Silas had converted to the faith, who had been about to commit suicide when they were miraculously freed from their imprisonment, 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). In all these cases, whole households or families were baptized. This means more than just the spouse; the children too were included. (1 Cor. 1:16, also, Acts 18:8).


We know that the Greek word oikos, translated "house" or "household," has traditionally included infants and children in its meaning for several reasons. There is no evidence of this word being used either in secular Greek, Biblical Greek,or in the writing of Hellenistic Judaism in a way which would restrict its meaning only to adults. The Old Testament parallel for "house" carries the sense of the entire family. The Greek translation of the original Hebrew manuscripts (completed in 250 B.C.) uses this word when translating the Hebrew word meaning the complete family (men, women, children, infants). Similarly, we know that the phrase "he and his house" refers to the total family; the Old Testament use of this phrase clearly demonstrates this by specifically mentioning the presence of children and infants at times. Furthermore, if given the New Testament pattern of household baptism, there were to be exceptions to this rule (such as infants), they would be spelled out.”

In Acts 16:30, 31, when the apostles were confronted with the question, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved? (v31), they answered, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, AND THY HOUSE." This implies that after an individual became a Christian the whole family becomes justified (or made holy/sanctified). 1Cor 7:14 also implies the same that one believer suffices in a house to make the others holy. Paul stated in Verse 14 that if one member was a believer and the other an unbeliever, that the unbeliever was justified by the believer. The next part in that same Verse states that , "ELSE WERE YOUR CHILDREN UNCLEAN; BUT NOW ARE THEY HOLY."


The Bible shows that God touched Lydia's heart and she became a believer after hearing the Word by and through Paul, and as a result, Paul baptized her household because of her belief. I tell them that it does not say God touched the hearts of her family, neither whether the family were true believers, but baptism was given because of her faith. Acts 16:31, says, "..AND THY HOUSE" and everyone in a house is sanctified accordingly by one believer minimum.


Also the Cornelius event, it is said that ‘all in the room’ were gifted with the Holy Spirit. It would be absurd to say that these families none of them had infants and that all of them were person who had attained the age of reason. All of them received the Holy Spirit and were baptized with water by Peter.


Nowhere do we read of children raised in believing households reaching the age of reason and then being baptized. The only explicit baptism accounts in the Bible involve converts from Judaism or paganism. For children of believers there is no explicit mention of baptism—either in infancy or later.


The apostolic Church baptized whole "households" (Acts 16:33; 1 Cor. 1:16), a term encompassing children and infants as well as servants. While these texts do not specifically mention—nor exclude—infants, the very use of the term "households" indicates an understanding of the family as a unit. Even one believing parent in a household makes the children and even the unbelieving spouse "holy" (1 Cor. 7:14).


Does this mean unbelieving spouses should be baptized? Of course not. The kingdom of God is not theirs; they cannot be "brought to Christ" in their unbelief. But infants have no such impediment. The kingdom is theirs, Jesus says, and they should be brought to him; and this means baptism.

1 Corinthians 10:1-2, "... our ancestors were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea, and all of them were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea."   The understanding that infants were to be baptized enabled Paul to speak of  "passing through the sea"  as a type of baptism.  Therefore, it prefigured the New Testament baptism.   And just as  "All of them" passed through the sea, so then, it also follows that "all of them" - including infants - are to be baptized.

The method of entry into the old covenant was circumcision (Genesis l7).  The  "whole household"  was circumcised (Genesis 17:27) because the Old Covenant included infants (Genesis 21:4).  In the new covenant, baptism replaces circumcision (Colossians 2:11-12). Galatians 3:27 says, "We were baptized into Christ" (Cf. 1 Corinthians 12:13).  The New Covenant is greater than the Old Covenant.  Since the Old Covenant included infants, the Jews would assume that the New Covenant would also.  The Bible doesn’t specifically mention infant baptism because it was understood and assumed to include them.  If the New Covenant had broken from the tradition of including infants, it would have to have been explained to the Jews. 

Since the New Covenant is greater than the old, and since the Old Covenant included infants, then the grace Jesus won for us in the New Covenant must be available to infants as well as adults. Just as we saw how whole households were circumcised, we read in the New Testament how the "whole household" of the jailer - "He and all his family," were baptized in Acts 16:31-33.   And Stephanas’s "Household"  was baptized in 1 Corinthians 1:16... and Lydia’s "household"  was baptized in Acts 16:15.  These verses clearly imply that all the infants in these families were also baptized.

Christ Reigns!!