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Describe and explain the central features of infant and believers baptism.

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Introduction

Describe and explain the central features of infant and believers baptism Baptism is based on the baptism of Jesus. In Baptism we are immersed in water. In the bible water symbolises few ideas. 1) Water is life; 2) Water is suffering and death. Christians believe that the themes of life and death are present in the sacrament of Baptism. Water also symbolises the cleansing of sins and the beginning of a new life. In Baptism we receive the Holy Spirit. In Jesus' baptism (Mark:9-11) when his head was lifted out of the water, heaven opened and the Holy Spirit came down on Jesus like a dove. This happens to all of us in Baptism. In the early Christian church Baptism was reserved for adults and it was only in the 3rd century that children were baptised. ...read more.

Middle

The Churches, which favour Infant Baptism, are the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of England, the Greek Orthodox Church and the Methodists. The argument these churches put forward is that children will be brought up in the Church. Infant Baptism is a more common type of Baptism. The ceremony for infant baptism is called a Christening. In the Christening the minister, godparents, parents together with the rest of the congregation are present. The baby is welcomed with parents and Godparents. The Parents and Godparents are asked if they are prepared to bring the baby up as a Christian. The all agree. A prayer is then said for the child and then the priest will then sprinkle water on the Childs forehead. ...read more.

Conclusion

Then follows the "laying on of the hands" of hands on the candidates hands while commitment to God is further encouraged. The candidate is then welcomed into the church as full members. The service finishes with a celebration of the Last supper. The main differences between Infant and believers baptism is that the person themselves request to be baptised and in infant baptism the parents make the decision for their child. Another difference is that in Infant baptism water is sprinkled over the child's head but in Believers Baptism the candidate is totally immersed in water. In infant baptism the parents select godparents and a candle is sometimes lit, these do not happen in Believers Baptism. Similarities are that in both water is used and both result in becoming members of the Christian community. No. of words. 594 ...read more.

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