Sunday, February 05, 2023

The History Of Belief In Justification Apart From Baptism

We've written far too much on the subject for me to link everything here. But I want to provide links to some examples of our more important posts on the topic. I plan to supplement this post with more links in the future when warranted. You may want to periodically return here to check for updates.

For a broad overview, including links to some of our posts on what scripture says about justification, go here. See this post on 1 Peter 3:21, for example. Or this one on the problems for baptismal regeneration in Romans 10. For a list of a double-digit number of New Testament examples of people being justified apart from baptism, see this post. And here's a discussion of how the setting of justification suggests that baptism is excluded. Another post, here, addresses how baptismal justification doesn't go well with what scripture says about the nearness of redemption. For a response to the notion that baptism shouldn't be considered a work, see this thread. Regarding the idea that assuming the inclusion of baptism in passages that don't mention it is no different than assuming the inclusion of repentance in passages that don't mention it, see here. And my recent post on Aristides discusses that subject further. See this post for a response to claims that we should see baptism in Biblical and extrabiblical references to water, washing, and such, even when the reference is ambiguous or is unlikely to be about baptism. See here regarding how there are problems for baptismal regeneration in the audience of some patristic documents. We're often told that there was unanimous agreement about seeing baptismal regeneration or baptismal justification in passages like John 3:5 and Titus 3:5 prior to the Reformation or during some other timeframe. Go here, here, here, and here for some responses. On the often-underestimated significance of the Biblical evidence and the often-underestimated value of some of the extrabiblical sources, see here and here. Concerning how baptismal beliefs and practices developed and varied from one source to another in early church history, go here. And here's a post about a hybrid position held by some church fathers, involving both a highly efficacious view of prebaptismal faith and a highly efficacious view of baptism. In another post, I wrote about widespread early Christian conversion accounts that involve significant changes in people's lives independent of baptism.

Again, there are many other posts with relevant material in our archives. Below is a list of some of our posts on justification apart from baptism in pre-Reformation sources outside the Bible. Some of these threads address multiple topics, so you may want to use the Ctrl F feature on your keyboard to find what you're interested in, and some of these threads have relevant material in their comments section:


Clement Of Rome




The Odes Of Solomon

The Epistle To Diognetus

Celsus And His Sources

Some Of Tertullian's Opponents

Minucius Felix

Some Waldensians

Some Lollards

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