Southern Baptist Rebaptism

When we think that “rebaptism” issues were only debated within Churches of Christ, perhaps we need to see things more broadly (e.g., Southern Baptists rebaptize) and historically (can you say “Donatist“?).

A blogpost entitled “Southern Baptists and Alien Immersion” was linked to my last post and it drew my interest. It illustrates that while there is potential rapprochement on baptismal theology, there is also strong and settled entrenchment on the subject.

The post quoted some results of a survey of 778 Southern Baptist pastors. 74% surveyed said their churches would not accept immersions by the Assembly of God or Free Will Baptist Churches. 87% said they would not accept immersions by Churches of Christ.

I think this is rather sad. When immersion is hinged on anything other than faith in Christ, it seems to me that it becomes an ecclesial–and consequently sectarian–power play. Baptism then serves denominational loyalty rather than serving faith in Jesus.

Alexander Campbell’s insistence that the confession of Jesus as the Christ is the only requirement for baptism seems all the more important to emphasize in our contemporary American context–not only for members of Churches of Christ but also, apparently, for pastors among Southern Baptist churches.

Whoever believes in Jesus is a candidate for baptism and whoever dismisses their baptism denies, it seems to me, the power of God’s work through faith (Colossians 2:12).

4 Responses to “Southern Baptist Rebaptism”

  1.   rich Says:

    hear we go again 🙂
    a little later for me bless
    thanks john mark

  2.   Jim Woodell Says:

    Certainly “baptism and rebaptism” is a subject that will be visited and revisted by every generation. In the fellowship of Churches of Christ the one blessing of “remission of sins” has been THE reason for being baptized and anyone baptized simply to “obey the Lord” or “follow His example” has been urged to be “rebaptized.” Sad! Some Baptist teach the reality of surrendering to the Lordship of Christ in baptism. When that is the case there is no reason to rebaptize. Many in Churches of Christ are rebaptized because they did not surrender to the Lordship of Christ the first time they were baptized.

  3.   rich constant Says:

    by the way great conclusion john mark.
    sorry bout that.
    hope you are all haveing a great lords day…


  4.   baltimoreguy99 Says:

    There appear to be geographical variations in Southern Baptist practice concerning rebaptism. It was very common in my native Mississippi but a good friend who is a Southern Baptist minister here in Maryland said that he found rebaptism to be puzzling and was not aware of it being practised by Maryland Southern Baptists.


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