Paedobaptism, (from παῖς, παιδός, a child, and βαπτισμός, baptism) is applied to the baptism of children or infants in the Christian Church, or what is popularly termed infant baptism. Under the general subject of baptism, it is that part which relates especially to the proper subjects of baptism. SEE BAPTISM.

I. Historical View of the Introduction and Prevalence of Infant Baptism. — The early history of this, as of any other Christian rite, involves, naturally and necessarily, two things: — the idea expressed in the rite, and the rite itself. Each of these must be traced in its historical connection, since, a rite or ordinance is the outgrowth of some idea which it is intended to symbolize. In this instance, the rite is the application of water in a certain way to a child; the idea is a certain relation of children to the Church, namely, that the children of Christian parents, by virtue of their parentage, are brought into such a relation to the Church that they are regarded as in a certain sense within its membership, i.e. just as there is a visible and invisible Church, SEE CHURCH, so there should be recognised a visible and invisible membership; the former being acquired by actual public admission after profession, the latter being acquired by virtue of the descent, and holding good only until the persons enjoying such a membership reach the age of independent action, when it becomes of non- effect unless supplemented by the visible connection. Those entitled to invisible membership are consequently recognised by the Church as fit candidates for baptism, and therefore the rite is administered by the Church when asked for. This historical view of the idea and the rite in the early Church will naturally be taken by two periods — the New Testament or apostolic period, and the period of the fathers.

1. The Idea and the Rite in the New Testament.

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Author: McClintock and Strong Cyclopedia

Keywords: Infant baptism, Water baptism, Sprinking, Baptism necessary, Baptism necessary for salvation, Baptism saves, Baptism salvation, Water immersion, Immersion, Immersion water, Affusion, pedo baptism, paedo baptism, pedobaptism, paedobaptism, Baptism by pouring, Baptize by pouring, Pouring water, Baptism immersion, Baptize immersion, Baptize, Baptise, Baptist, Adult baptism, credobaptism, Infant sprinkling, Child baptism, Baptize children, Baptize infants, Sprinkling water, Sprinkle baptism, John the Baptist, John the baptizer, Water submersion, Submersion, Submersion baptism, Baptize submersion, believer's baptism, baptized in water, water baptized, water baptised, baptised in water, John's baptism, mikveh, ritual cleansing, washing, ritual washing

Bible reference(s): Matthew 3:6, Matthew 3:7, Mark 1:5, Mark 16:16, Luke 3:3, Luke 3:7, Luke 3:12, Luke 3:21, Luke 7:30, Luke 12:50, John 1:25, John 1:31, John 3:22, John 4:2, Acts 2:41, Acts 8:12, Acts 8:13, Acts 8:16, Acts 8:36, Acts 8:38, Acts 9:18, Acts 10:48, Acts 16:15, Acts 16:33, Acts 18:8, Acts 19:3, Acts 19:5, Acts 22:16, Romans 6:3, Romans 6:4, 1 Corinthians 1:13, 1 Corinthians 1:14, 1 Corinthians 1:15, 1 Corinthians 1:16, 1 Corinthians 1:17, 1 Corinthians 10:2, 1 Corinthians 15:29, Galatians 3:27, Ephesians 4:5, Colossians 2:12, 1 Peter 3:21

Source: John McClintock and James Strong, Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological, and Ecclesiastical Literature.

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