The Apostolic Pattern
According to the apostolic witness, our Lord not only commissioned his Church to baptize (Matthew 28:18-20) and required baptism among his disciples during His earthly career (John 4:1), but, as all four Gospels portray, he himself was baptized by John the Baptist. We will not here explore the relationships between Jesus’ baptism, John’s, Jewish proselyte baptism, and the ceremonial washings of the Old Testament (e.g., Exodus 40:12-15; Leviticus 8; Numbers 8, 19). Suffice it to say that the Law’s prescriptions for ritual ablutions were naturally extended into the moral sphere (Isaiah 1:16; Ezekiel 36:25; Zechariah 8:1; Psalm 51:7), wherein it was acknowledged that outer cleanliness and ritual purification were not enough (Isaiah 4:2-6; Ezekiel 36:25f, 33; 37:23; and Jeremiah 33:8). There is an acute awareness within Israel of the need for a spiritual lustration that will cleanse inwardly and truly. This, no doubt, is the basic import of John’s baptism:
[Christ’s] submission to the baptism of John and rebuke of the Pharisees for not doing likewise indirectly taught the desirability of a radical cleansing, expressed in a single effective lustration. Such a complete cleansing in a once-for-all lustration is known in the Old Testament only in an eschatological hope, but the hope is significant: the prophets look for the Day when a foundation will be opened to cleanse the house of David from sin and uncleanness (Zech.13.1), when the Lord will ‘sprinkle clean water’ upon his people and put within them a new heart and a new spirit (Ezk.36.25), and when He will refine his people as with fire and with fuller’s soap (Mal.3.1ff.). Till that time the Israelite, according to the Old Testament, should continue in the offering of worship, cleansed through the lustrations commanded by the Law, and await the purgation that the new age alone can give.
When John appears on the scene, baptizing in the river Jordan and announcing the coming kingdom of God, his words seem weighted by all the prophets of Scripture:
Luke 3:7 He said therefore to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Bear fruits in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham. 9 Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire,” … 15 As the people were in expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Christ, 16 John answered them all, saying, “I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
This distinction between the baptism with the Holy Spirit and the baptism with water would be maintained throughout the apostolic period, but never divorced. Though baptized with water already as the Lord’s disciples, the apostles themselves wouldn’t receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit until Pentecost: “[Jesus] ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, ‘you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.’” At the Day of Pentecost, the outpouring of the Spirit creates quite a scene (Acts 2:1-13), offering Peter an opportunity to explain to the gathering crowds that what they were witnessing was the great outpouring of the Spirit of God, “in the last days,” (Acts 2:14-21) as promised by the prophet (Joel 2:28-32), and effected by the crucified, resurrected and exalted Christ, Jesus of Nazareth (Acts 2:22-36). The crowds respond in conviction and alarm, asking, “what shall we do?” Peter answers, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,” (Acts 2:38). This episode would cast the die of the apostolic mission and practice. Ralph P. Martin summarizes the data from the Book of Acts:
Baptism is connected with repentance (Acts 2:38) and the offering of forgiveness (Acts 2:38; cf. 22:16). Likewise, it is associated with the gift of the Spirit (Acts 2:38; 10:44-48), although there is no strict order of sequence. Sometimes the Holy Spirit is given with baptism; at other times baptism follows the descent of the Spirit (10:44ff.). And we may note…that there is no automatic process or magical formula which guarantees the bestowal of the Spirit, or which necessarily implies that all who were baptized in water received the spiritual counterpart in the gift of the Spirit (8:12-24). The laying on of hands marked the coming of the Spirit in Samaria (8:14-17) and Ephesus (19:5-6) after baptism; or (as in Acts 9:17-18) before baptism. … It is a striking fact that, while the sequence is varied, the order of initial events is clear and precise. Men hear the message of Christ; they exercise faith in Him; and they confess their belief as they submit to baptism. …The sequence of ‘hearing’, ‘believing’ and ‘being baptized’ is persevered throughout the book of Acts; and the frequency of mention gives impressive continuity to the Apostolic practice.
This “continuity” of “the Apostolic practice” is witnessed throughout the New Testament Epistles. In addition, we see this order reflected (though not without alteration) in the sub-apostolic church, as earlier noted. In particular, the pattern is evidenced in the ancient practice of catechesis, in which those who profess faith in Christ and obedience to Him are instructed over a period of time before receiving the rite of baptism (and after which they are able to partake of the Lord’s Supper).
Catechumenate is a term applied to the method of receiving and instructing, in preparation for baptism, those who applied for membership in the early Christian Church. As soon as the apostolic mission had reached the stage of founding a Christian society, it was natural that those who wished to enter it should be required to go through a course of instruction as to the meaning of the hopes which it held out and the demands which it made of its members. Our information as to the method pursued in the earliest period is very scanty. Apparently the gatherings of the disciples were at first freely opened to any one (I Cor. xiv. 24) who desired to know more of their faith and practice; and baptism was probably often administered with but a short delay. As time went on, more care was exercised; the need of it was demonstrated by cases of relapse into heathenism and of the seeking of membership from interested or treacherous motives. We find traces of this greater caution as early as the first Apology of Justin (c. 150). A demand is made for some security as to the belief and conduct of the candidate, who is not apparently admitted to the assembly of the faithful until he has been adjudged worthy of baptism.”
Hence, as Dix concludes, “from the earliest days repentance and the acceptance of the belief of the church was the condition sine qua non of baptism into the Body of Christ.” But if the apostolic pattern is reflected in the custom of catechesis, it is also significantly altered. The time between becoming a “catechumen” and being baptized tends to increase over time. By the time of Hippolytus’ Apostolic Tradition, catechumens were generally instructed for three years before they could be baptized. This is to be sharply contrasted with the precedent of the New Testament, in which baptism followed immediately upon confession of faith, as exemplified in the words of the newly converted Ethiopian eunuch: “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” By the time of the fourth century, however, many would enroll as a catechumen and then defer baptism for years, often until shortly before death (and when so ill that the normal mode of immersion was impossible, requiring baptism by aspersion or affusion). As the practice of infant baptism became generalized, this custom would eventually cease altogether:
Catechetical instructions began to disappear when more and more of those baptized were infant children of Christians rather than adult converts from paganism… In the city of Rome, for example, it was about the beginning of the sixth century when adult converts from paganism became a rarity at the Easter baptisms. By that time the bishop of Rome found himself preaching to a whole roomful of infants carried in the arms of their parents. No wonder the traditional catechetical instruction ceased.
It wasn’t until the Reformation that catechesis would be “rebooted” in the churches. During this revival of baptismal instruction, the practice of formally catechizing children baptized in infancy was also instituted. The Reformers wrongly read this observance back into the early church. The error of reading our own tradition’s particular practices into that of the primitive church is ever present! Rather, this process of catechizing baptized children appears to have been an innovation of the 16th century. That the early practice of catechizing “candidates” before baptism was added to the New Testament pattern seems, perhaps, an understandable development, and remains entirely consistent with the apostolic standard of reserving this rite of passage into the Church for the converted. If infant baptism were to be incorporated, however, more considerable modifications would have to be made. As Philip Schaff concludes,
In reviewing the patristic doctrine of baptism which was sanctioned by the Greek and Roman, and, with some important modifications, also by the Lutheran and Anglican churches, we should remember that during the first three centuries, and even in the age of Constantine, adult baptism was the rule, and that the actual conversion of the candidate was required as a condition before administering the sacrament (as is still the case on missionary ground). Hence in preceding catechetical instruction, the renunciation of the devil, and the profession of faith. But when the same high view is applied without qualification to infant baptism, we are confronted at once with the difficulty that infants cannot comply with this condition. They may be regenerated (this being an act of God), but they cannot be converted, i.e., they cannot repent and believe, nor do they need repentance, having not yet committed any actual transgression. Infant baptism is an act of consecration, and looks to subsequent instruction and personal conversion, as a condition to full membership of the church. Hence confirmation came in as a supplement to infant baptism.
Once again, we see an undeniable distinction between the practical meaning of adult baptism and that of infant baptism.
What is the Meaning of Baptism in the Apostolic Tradition?
What is perhaps the most obvious import to baptism isn’t explicitly drawn in the New Testament: purification from the defilement of sin. “But since baptism is washing with water, since it involves a religious use of water, and since regeneration is expressed elsewhere in terms of washing (John 3:5; Titus 3:5; 1Cor.6:11), it is difficult, if not impossible, to escape the conclusion that this washing with water involved with baptism represents that indispensible purification which is presupposed in union with Christ and without which no one can enter the kingdom of God.” This is very close to Augustine’s conception of baptism washing away innate or original sin. Moreover, as can be readily seen in texts like 1Peter 3:21, Christian baptism is explicitly tied to the washing away of the guilt of sin, as it was in John’s (Matthew 3:6; Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3). This is also reflected in the Book of Acts:
2:38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
22:16 “And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.”
The sprinkling of the blood, then, naturally “mixes” with the cleansing waters of baptism (1Peter 1:2; Revelation 7:14), as the old hymn has it:
Are you washed in the blood,
In the soul cleansing blood of the Lamb?
Are your garments spotless?
Are they white as snow?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Reading the book of Acts, we see that baptism is a badge of discipleship, as it was during Jesus’ earthly ministry as well. Particularly noteworthy is the oft-repeated expression, “in the name of Jesus Christ,” or “into the name of the Lord Jesus,” (2:38; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5). “At all events, we may be sure that baptism in the Lord’s name meant at least that the rite was seen as a confession of Christ and an act of submission to His authority, expressed not in word only but by an obedience to His will and a deliberate dedication to His service and lordship.” In addition, Beasely-Murray reads Acts 22:16 as indicating “that the name of Jesus was invoked by the baptismal candidate; it is also likely that the name was called over the candidate by the baptizer…The believer was baptized ‘for the sake of’ the Lord Jesus and made over to Him.” In short, baptism was the initial act of discipleship, in which we formally confess Christ as Lord, and, by the invocation of his name over us, willingly submit (or pledge) our whole person to his sovereignty. This understanding is also reflected in the early church. Justin Martyr refers to the baptized individual as “him who has been convinced and has assented to our teaching.” It is also an act to “pledge themselves to be able to live accordingly.” And if the element of the candidate’s faith was obscured by the emphasis of the later patristic era on the intrinsic efficacy of the rite itself, it wasn’t entirely erased, as we’ve already seen in the case of Tertullian. Regarding Augustine, Kelly writes,
the operative factor [in the baptism’s efficacy] seems to have been the candidate’s belief in the Trinity as expressed in his answers to the threefold baptismal interrogations [i.e., an affirmation of belief in the clauses of the Apostles’ Creed]….He goes on to explain that it is not merely the uttering of the word, but the word considered as a vehicle of faith, that endows the water with saving power; and the context, with its references to Rom.10, 8-10 and 1Pet.3, 21, makes it plain that he is thinking of the triple questionnaire and the confession of faith made in response.
In sum, the baptism expresses our claim to follow Christ, and in turn, by being baptized into his name, Christ’s claim over us as Lord. Our role in baptism, then, is not to be minimized in light of God’s.
Speaking of the fathers, baptism was typically linked with death in the early church. Ambrose referred to the font as a kind of grave. Chrysostom said baptism was a cross, and what the cross and burial in the tomb was to Christ so baptism is to us. Some of the ancient baptism fonts are cruciform (“cross-shaped”). In fact, the oldest font known to still exist, from a 3rd century house church in Syria, is shaped like a coffin. This reflects the apostolic teaching that baptism signifies our death. “C.F.D. Moule has called attention to the New Testament stress on baptism as ‘essentially death and burial – not mere washing.’ This latter metaphor [“washing”] is found, as at 1 Corinthians 6:11 and Ephesians 5:26, but the characteristic note is sounded in the call which the ceremony issues to death to sin and self, and rising to newness of Christ’s risen life.” The most striking instance of this is the Romans 6:3-4 text. In baptism we die with Christ, are buried with Him, and subsequently are raised to “newness of life.”
Moreover, this picture not only marks the death of “our old man,” and the inauguration of a radically new life in Christ – “a new creation, the old has passed away, behold, the new has come” – but serves as the ethical paradigm of the new life in Christ:
“It is interesting that Paul links preparation for baptism in stripping off the baptizand’s clothes and the subsequent investiture of new clothing with the putting off of the old nature and the putting on of the new. In those sections of Ephesians and Colossians which speak of the Christian life as a death to the past life and a rising to newness of ethical behavior, baptism is pictured as marking the transition and change (see Colossians 2:12; 3:1 in the total context of 1:11: ‘putting off the body of sins of the flesh…,’ 3:5: ‘Put to death…,’ 3:8: ‘Put off the old habits…,’ 3:10: ‘Put on the new man’; 3:12: ‘Put on the new virtues’).”
“The basic significance of baptism,” Beasley-Murray writes, “is participation in the death and resurrection of Christ, with the tremendous consequences that involves of a new life in the Holy Spirit orientated towards the all holy God.” The imitation of Christ, in other words, follows from the reality of our union with Christ.
Conclusion on Baptism
In conclusion, we wholeheartedly agree with John Murray, “that baptism signifies union with Christ in the virtue of his death and the power of his resurrection, [resulting in] purification from the defilement of sin by the renewing grace of the Holy Spirit, and purification from the guilt of sin by the sprinkling of the blood of Christ.” At the center of it all stands our union with Christ through faith. All that is ours – our flesh, our frailty and even our sin – he took upon himself. All that is his – his immortality, his glory and his righteousness – he gives to us. At the cross, we were crucified with Christ (Romans 6:6-7). Our sin was punished (Galatians 2:19-20). We died to sin, once for all (Romans 6:8-11). In the empty tomb, we conquered death. We now live with Christ “toward God,” Romans 6:10b. We are thus made to share in God’s vindication of the Son as righteous and beloved forever! Baptism signifies this reality, and though Scripture does not explicitly teach this, it theologically coheres with the biblical data to say that baptism “seals” these blessings of union with Christ and “the fact that [we’ve] entered into a new relation to God and as such [are] obliged to live according to the laws of the Kingdom of God.” In this regard, our baptism is precisely like Abraham’s circumcision: it seals the divine promises received through “the obedience of faith.”
A Means of Grace?
Spurgeon is representative of most Protestants when he declares “Baptismal Regeneration” a “fundamental error.” Is this an accurate assessment? Based on the apostolic record, it certainly appears to be. The apostles rejected any magical views concerning the water or rite itself (cf. 1Peter 3:21), and consistently demanded faith and repentance before baptism. Charles Hodge’s reasoning on the matter seems to us incontrovertible:
It is plain that baptism cannot be the ordinary means of regeneration, or the channel of conveying in the first instance the benefits of redemption to the souls of men, because, in the case of adults,* faith and repentance are the conditions of baptism. But faith and repentance, according to the Scriptures, are the fruits of regeneration. He who exercises repentance towards God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ is in a state of salvation before baptism and therefore in a state of regeneration. Regeneration consequently precedes baptism, and cannot be its effect, according to the ordinance of God. That the Apostles did require the profession of faith and repentance before baptism, cannot be denied. This is plain, not only from their recorded practice but also from the nature of the ordinance. Baptism is a profession of faith in the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit; not of a faith to be obtained through the ordinance, but of a faith already entertained. When the Eunuch applied to Philip for baptism, he said: ‘If thou believest with all thine heart thou mayest.’ Of those who heard Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost it is said, ‘they that gladly received his word were baptized’ (Acts ii. 41).
(*Note again the paedobaptistic exception). Calvin’s argument clinches the matter:
Paul did not mean to signify that our cleansing and salvation are accomplished by water, or that water contains in itself the power to cleanse, regenerate, and renew; nor that here is the cause of salvation, but only that in this sacrament are received the knowledge and certainty of such gifts...Indeed, baptism promises us no other purification than through the sprinkling of Christ’s blood, which is represented by means of water from the resemblance to cleansing and washing. Who, therefore, may say that we are cleansed by this water which attests with certainty that Christ’s blood is our true and only laver? Thus, the surest argument to refute the self–deception of those who attribute everything to the power of the water can be sought in the meaning of baptism itself, which draws us away, not only from the visible element which meets our eyes, but from all other means, that it may fasten our minds upon Christ alone.
But if the baptismal rite is not the means of regeneration, is it a means of grace at all? The answer must surely be in the affirmative. If, as Calvin argues, the sacrament functions to “fasten our minds upon Christ alone,” then we are blessed indeed; for Christ is the channel of all grace, and the vital object of our faith, by which we flourish. More specifically, as those going down into the waters of baptism, we enact our “execution” in Christ and experience a physical rising from the waters of death that vividly impress upon us (and those witnessing the baptism) our new life in Christ through the divine resurrection-power.
Moreover, as Paul seems to indicate in his ethical instructions to the churches, baptism provides for us a master template for the Christian life. We are continually drawn back through the rite of water baptism (both ours and others) to the essential act of faith: casting off the old man in repentance, and putting on Christ, in dying and being raised with him through faith. To this mode of thought and conviction we must continually repair (e.g., Romans 6:2-14). As Luther writes in his Larger Catechism (XIIIA, Part Fourth):
Therefore our Baptism abides forever; and even though some one should fall from it and sin, nevertheless we always have access thereto, that we may again subdue the old man. But we need not again be sprinkled with water; for though we were put under the water a hundred times, it would nevertheless be only one Baptism… Repentance, therefore, is nothing else than a return and approach to Baptism, that we repeat and practice what we began before, but abandoned.
Finally, in so far as baptism constitutes the initial, formal confession of sin and profession of faith in Christ, as it appears was typically the case in the New Testament, it constitutes the “covenanting” of the believer with God in Christ. It therefore marks the great transaction in which our sins are forgiven, the Spirit of God is received as our pledge from God, and we in turn pledge ourselves to “take up [our] cross and follow [Jesus].” For by being united to Christ in his death and resurrection through faith, which our baptism so vividly signifies, we enter into the new covenant God has established for Israel (Jeremiah 31:31f., Ezekiel 36:24f.), and not only Israel, but all the nations (2Corinthians 3-6). In light of this, it would seem ideal for baptism to follow as closely upon our coming to faith as possible. Yet even where that is not possible, baptism is still a means of grace in “proclaiming” to us the awesome realities entered into by grace through faith in Jesus Christ our Lord.
 We see this recognition and longing for inward cleansing in the Dead Sea Scrolls: “He will cleanse him of all wicked deeds with the spirit of holiness; like purifying waters He will shed upon the spirit of truth (to cleanse him) of all abomination and falsehood” trans. G Vermes, The Dead Sea Scrolls in English (London: Pelican Books, 1962), pp.77f.
 G. Beasley-Murray, Baptism in the New Testament, op cit., p.10.
 Worship in the Early Church, p.99-100 (italics mine). Regarding the household baptisms that some cite as possible evidence for infant baptism in the Bible, the pattern here too is the same: “And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house…and he was baptized at once, he and all his family … And he rejoiced, along with his entire household.”
 “Christian Initiation in the New Testament is described and conceived of solely in terms of a conscious adherence and response to the Gospel of God, that is, solely in terms of adult Initiation,” Gregory Dix, The Shape of Liturgy, p.31. Similarly, Roman Catholic scholar R. Schnackernburg writes, “Baptism without faith in Christ is unimaginable for the thinking of the primitive church,” cited in Beasley-Murray, Baptism, p.272, fn.3.
 First Apology, 61
 P. Schaff, The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, ed. S.M. Jackson (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, ), Vol.II, Catechumanate. (Italics mine)
 Cited in Beasley-Murray, op cit., p.485.
 One who receives instruction in the principles of the Christian religion with a view to baptism.
 “In the New Testament, baptism usually took place upon a person’s confession of Jesus Christ as Lord. In fact, it happened with what seems to us immoderate haste. There were no pre-baptism classes, no doctrinal instruction, no waiting periods. The main idea seemed to be to get them wet in the baptismal waters as soon as possible,” Vander Zee, op.cit., p.123.
 Hughes O. Old, Shaping of the Reformed Baptismal Rite, p.17.
 “When Bucer and Melancthon declared that confirmation in the primitive Church was a catechizing of children on reaching maturity for the pubic ratification of their faith, followed by a solemn blessing, they were talking historical nonsense. But they reached this astounding fantasy quite simply and innocently by reading back into antiquity the medieval ‘set up’ of universal infant baptism, followed in childhood by the parish priest’s instructions … leading up to confirmation by the bishop at the end of youth as a solemn ceremony with no very precise meaning,” Dix, Shape of Liturgy, p.28.
 Though confirmation of children was practiced in the medieval church, it was typically done a year to three years after birth, and did not entail substantial instruction. Old writes, “What about the catechetical instruction of the children baptized in infancy? Was there instruction for them once they reached the age of reason? The rites of Strasbourg and Constance indicate that the godparents promised to see that the children would learn the catechetical pieces, but evidently the Church did not provide any regular means for giving catechetical instruction. … Whatever the reason, the fact is that there was no widespread catechetical teaching for Christian children,” Shape of Reformed Baptismal Rite, p.20.
 The practice of delaying baptism for instruction and proving would-be disciples in the early church is understandable particularly as numbers swelled. The 3rd century Didascalia Apostolorum, for instance, says, “When the heathen desire and promise to repent, saying ‘We believe,’ we receive them into the congregation so that they may hear the word, but do not receive them into communion until they receive the seal and are fully initiated,” (2.39). Yet, as numbers continued to swell, especially after Constantine, the increasingly elaborate catechetical process became unfeasible, and the institution declined.
 “One cannot but note the contrast between this antique usage and that of contemporary Paedobaptist communions, where catechetical instruction is given not before but following baptism of children who are preparing for confirmation. The disparity between the ancient sequence of catechism, baptism, confirmation, and communion, and the present-day sequence of baptism, catechism, confirmation, and communion cannot be denied and should not be ignored. One may, indeed, suppose that the original catechumenate looked both to the instruction of adult converts from paganism before baptism and to the teaching of their children after baptism. But if so, the sources that plainly testify to the former are strangely silent about the latter. The original catechesis always anticipated rather than followed baptism,” Jewett, p.44.
 History, Vol.II, 71. We may also note that the appearance of “sponsors,” who would act on behalf of the child to guarantee their post-baptismal candidacy, in the third century also suggests new developments surrounding the baptism of infants.
 J. Murray, Christian Baptism (Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed, 1980), p.5.
 This clarifying distinction is made in Calvin’s discussions on baptism in Institutes Book IV, 15 and 16.
 Martin, Worship, p.99
 Baptism, p.100.
 First Apology, 65.
 Ibid., 61.
 E.g., Cyril of Jerusalem argued, “once the Trinity has been invoked…the baptismal water possesses sanctifying power,” Kelly, 425.
 In the zeal to defend infant baptism, many evangelicals have stressed the objectivity of the rite as God’s act to the neglect of the subject aspect, entailing “the obedience of faith.”
 Martin, p.107.
 Ibid., p.108.
 Baptism, p.286. Similarly, we wholeheartedly embrace the London Confession of Faith when it defines baptism as “ordained by Jesus Christ, to be unto the party Baptized, a sign of his fellowship with him, in his death, and resurrection; of his being engrafted into him; of remission of sins; and of his giving up unto God through Jesus Christ to live and walk in newness of Life.”
 Christian Baptism, p.5
 Louis Berkhof, Systematic Theology (Eerdmans, 1996), p.642.
 Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume III, (Hendrickson Publishers, 1999) p. 601.
 Institutes of the Christian Religion (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1960), pp. 1304–1305.
 I am not hereby declaring that immersion is the only valid “mode” of baptism (though I think it is ideal) but am speaking metaphorically.