Circumcision and Baptism revisited

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Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
In Suk,
If you think that we view circumcision or baptism simply as a mark of covenant membership, then clearly you are not apprehending the contrary position. It seems as though you have an "either-or" position, and therefore the other side position must be "either-or" also. This is not the case.

Observe by your own words the plain difference you posit between what you say the purpose of circumcision IS (presumably now, in this new economy), and what circumcision meant previously (having a "generational sense").

You need to understand that those (paedobaptsits), who are on the other side of the fence from you, deny there is a difference between the purpose and meaning of the covenant sign before, and the purpose and meaning of the covenant sign now.

You note that Paul rehearses the purpose of circumcision. That purpose--in keeping with the Old Testament age, for a sign that isn't even directly relevant in this age, other than by analogy to baptism--is the purpose God meant unto Abraham and the Old Testament church! Therefore, the sign is to be a sign of faith in the Promise that the sign signifies.

Of course, you know that God designated the proper recipients of that circumcision, Gen.17. So, despite the fact that circumcision is directly tied to the salvific promises of God, and the recipients of that sign are supposed to give evidence of believing in the significance of the sign, God does not direct the same order of application--that is, to follow profession--in the case of the children of believers. Therefore, Ishmael is circumcised (immediately), and Isaac (later, at his birth). Likewise, the same orders obtained for converts, or children of the covenant.

You propose that the statements of Paul indicate a change. But how, since the meaning of covenant-sign is no different, from age to age?

There is no "replacement" of "generational" with "imitative" sense, unless you think that "imitative" wasn't a part of the Old Testament regimin, unless you think the meaning of the sign has actually changed.

Once again, we don't appear to share an "either-or" approach to the sign; but the paedo-baptist has a "both-and" approach, exactly as it was for Abraham and the Old Testament church.
 

steadfast7

Puritan Board Junior
You need to understand that those (paedobaptsits), who are on the other side of the fence from you, deny there is a difference between the purpose and meaning of the covenant sign before, and the purpose and meaning of the covenant sign now ... You propose that the statements of Paul indicate a change. But how, since the meaning of covenant-sign is no different, from age to age?

thanks for your comments Bruce. It would probably be helpful for me if you stated propositionally what the purpose and meaning of circumcision was in the OT. (since there is no change between the economies, only one statement should suffice.)

What I'm arguing is that Paul does state plainly for NT Christians what he thinks circumcision was about and he tells ushow that relates to present salvation. He seems to be saying that Abraham is our father NOT from an inherited faith proceeding from him (generational), but because we ourselves are now having that same faith and being counted righteous as he was (imitative).

When making mention of circumcision, no where (that I'm aware) does Paul make reference to the act that Abraham's offspring
receive. Rather, when he speaks of circumcision, he is strictly concerned with what Abraham himself received, by virtue of his faith. He was given the sign from God. Paul may not be making a strict abrogation of the OT principle, as paedos would want demonstrated, but he is certainly steering the ship in a different direction and telling us what is important when considering circumcision.

It cannot be said any clearer than Romans 4
Rom 4:22 That is why his faith was "counted to him as righteousness."
Rom 4:23 But the words "it was counted to him" were not written for his sake alone,
Rom 4:24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord,

Rom 4:25 who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

We are in relationship with Abraham NOT through generational continuity with him (physical or spiritual), but because we are cut from the very same block, to procure the same blessing!

My conclusion from this: we should not be baptized in the way that Isaac was cirumcised. We should be baptized in the way Abraham was circumcised!
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
In Suk,
In answer to your first request, for the propositional statement re. the purpose and meaning of circumcision in the OT, I only ask you to please wait until next week, when I have returned from vacation. I have well-prepared materials on that exact question, and I would prefer to present it entire. Don't worry, it can be stated (as I indicated previously) pretty much in a list or column format. But given the PuritanBoard's set up, it will probably have to be in parallel sentence structure.


I find the following premises in your above:
1) You divide what Abraham received from what Isaac or any other of Abraham's offspring received.
2) You divide on a matter of mere temporality between the "way" Abraham is circumcised, and the way Isaac was circumcised.

We deny both premises,
1) the first in its totality, because both men were God's elect, therefore God's promises to Abraham were no less true when applied to Isaac, and Isaac even received statements of covenant-renewal (Gen.26:2-5&23-25);
2) the second according to substance, because temporality is accidental and not substantive regarding the meaning of the sign.


I am not certain that you have yet reckoned sufficiently with the explicit testimony of Moses regarding the spiritual essence of circumcision. You are quite focused on what Paul states about that spiritual essence, but appear to be saying that Paul basically introduces something of which the OT knows little or nothing, that he speaks in Romans of what "he means," something that is actually a theological innovation, albeit one that is Spirit-inspired.

In fact, what he is doing is merely making explicit the Christological connection between what the OT already teaches about circumcision, and its NT application. The interest Paul has in Abraham's particular faith has to do with the point he makes against the legalist's understanding of the value of an external relation to Abraham. External relationships, however calculated, have no inherent value if not accompanied by the inward relationship that is necessary to ground them.

But this realization doesn't make an external relation worthless in every case. Otherwise, Isaac's circumcision would have been of no value to him. Nay, but as a believer it indeed testified to him of God's faithfulness to his covenant word. Thus, by faith it stood in exactly the same relation to him as Abraham's circumcision did. Abraham believed God's Word of promise, and then he received a witness to that promise to strengthen his faith; and the Lord spoke further to him even challenging his faith, which stood the test. Isaac first received God's witness to his promise, and he believed the Word to which it pointed. That witness strengthened his faith, and the Lord spoke further to him as well.

Abraham is better for Paul's purpose, however, not only for the stock already placed in him by those who overvalued their external religious connection to him. But also because in his case there is no mistaking a spiritual blessing for an outward cause, due to the fact he was blessed in believing long before he was given any outward cause (circumcision) on which his hope might have been falsely based. Therefore, circumcision cannot be made rightly to serve any such-like purpose for anyone at all.

Nor is Abraham unique in this condition, except for his being the first to be given this covenant Word and sign (him the father of us all)! He isn't unique in the very subject under consideration, although he is the best example, since there can be only one such beginning. But his story of faith, followed by the sign for the strengthening of faith, was replicated in the case of all true, male converts to the Faith. Each and every one of them received the "sign of the righteousness he had (at first) by faith." The only way this would not be true for them all would be to propose a crass carnality infusing both sign and recipient, despite the convert's new commitment to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel. From whom did converts "receive" this sign? From men? you could only say that in a mediated sense. No, but from God they received it, just as Abraham did. How far these believers were from "inheriting" faith!

In fact, no one ever "inherited faith," and I'm not really sure that you would even mean to imply such a thing, though you use the adjective "generational" opposed to "imitative." Isaac didn't inherit his faith from Abraham, neither David from Jesse, etc.

If you mean to imply that an (believing) Israelite received the Faith passed down to him by his (believing!) parents, then surely you can see that Paul can't be stating a NT truth that is in any way incongruent with OT truth; but he is correcting misapprehensions, current in every age, about what it always has meant to possess true saving faith, or truly access the Faith that saves. I'm not sure of what difference you see here, that age to this. Nor, can I see how practically speaking you desire anything less than a faithful passage of the Faith you possess down to your own children who shall believe it unto salvation just as you do.

I realize that you may think that the religion of Abraham was every Israelite's heritage, regardless of his faith. But that seems to me a very far-fetch, considering how sooner or later, unbelievers were visibly disinherited. Persistent law-breakers were supposed to be cut-off judicially; and corporately the nation as a whole was placed under progressive judgments that culminated in their expulsion for idolatry (even that conducted under the name of Jehovah). Isn't this the way of God with his church even now? Church-discipline, or eventual removal of a lampstand?


Again, it seems to me that the substance of your objection must be just as telling against the practice of infant-circumcision, were the practice not explicitly spelled out in the commandment respecting that ordinance of the covenant of grace. Every argument against infant-baptism is implicitly an argument against infant-circumcision. Only by one of several routes to the denial of said covenant with Abraham, as being that indissoluble promissory covenant of grace, can one escape the critique. And yet despite what might seem cogent arguments against the wisdom of circumcising any infants, God declared that some such persons should be so marked. Therefore, I must conclude that those arguments are wanting, regarding both covenant-signs in their respective eras.


I'll get back to you. Thank you for your patience.
 

steadfast7

Puritan Board Junior
Initial thoughts for now, but I'll wait for you expostion on the meaning of OT circumcision.
1) You divide what Abraham received from what Isaac or any other of Abraham's offspring received.
2) You divide on a matter of mere temporality between the "way" Abraham is circumcised, and the way Isaac was circumcised.
1) You divide what Abraham received from what Isaac or any other of Abraham's offspring received.
2) You divide on a matter of mere temporality between the "way" Abraham is circumcised, and the way Isaac was circumcised.
I think there is a significant difference here, and the significance applies directly to Paul's argument and our condition. Abraham received circumcision AFTER believing. Paul seems to want to emphasize this against his Judaizing objectors who insist that circumcision comes PRIOR to justification. Isaac, as is the case, received circumcision before believing. In the end, Paul puts Christians in parallel with Abraham, not Isaac. Where Isaac comes into Paul's thought is solely with reference to the promise (Christ), Rom 9, which must come through genetic lines. In the end, I do see a typological difference, if not, why single out Abraham specifically? Why not make the argument for justification based on Israel as a whole? You see, I think Isaac (and Israel's) situation is excluded precisely because they have reason to boast in their flesh; they were "born" elect. Abraham has none.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
why single out Abraham specifically?

This has already been answered In Suk. The problem with your approach to Paul here is that you are so keen to focus on the issue of Paul teaching about circumcision being abrogated is that you are missing the reason Paul is introducing Abraham into the discussion of Romans 4. You are jumping into the middle of a polemical argument by Paul where he is dealing with a Jewish objector who sees in his circumcision some sort of assurance that, because he possesses Circumcision and Torah, that he's unlike the wicked Gentiles.

Focus on what Paul is actually trying to convey to a Jewish reader. He's trying to destroy the common Jewish distortion that possession of Circumcision and Torah guarded the Jew from a need of the same foreign righteousness that the Gentile needed. It is quite obvious why circumcision is introduced: because he's emphasizing the instrument by which Abraham laid hold of Christ. It was faith and not circumcision and this theme is manifest throughout the Scriptures. It is sad that you're missing this.
 

steadfast7

Puritan Board Junior
I actually get that point pretty well. Your train of argument seems to be that Paul's discussion on circumcision doesn't, in any way, change the theology of cirucumcision with respect to Abraham or the OT economy, and I think we need to allow for that. It may very well be that the Jewish objectors have abused the sign and its meaning. and could not Paul be using this as an occasion to do away with the external sign and emphasize the reality?

the parallel thing happens in new perspective on Paul debates. They say that Judaism was always a religion of election and grace, so Paul couldn't have been abrogating anything, or bringing in anything innovative. Well, whatever Paul says, he says to the current state of affairs and so speaks against it, thereby overturning the status quo to establish the new. Same thing here.

I disagree that Paul sees Abraham as merely the best exemplar among many. It may be that Isaac and Jacob were men of faith, but they had "inherited" covenant status from birth. There is a substantive difference between Abraham and the rest with regard to their faith, and Abraham is chosen to be the type of Gentile faith.
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Inward and outward characteristics
Circumcision
outward--Jer.9:26; Gen.17:10-27; Lev.12:3; Jsh.5:1-8; cf. 1Sam.17:26; Lk.2:21; Phil.3:5
inward--Jer.9:26; Lev.26:41; Dt.10:16; Dt.30:10; Jer.4:4; Ezk.44:7,9; cf.Act.7:51; Rom.2:25-29​
Baptism
outward--Heb.10:22; Jn.1:26; Act.8:36; Act.10:47
inward--Heb.10:22; Gal.3:27; 1Cor.12:12-14​


Five Symbols
1) Death/sacrifice
circumcision was bloody, like most OT rituals, pointing to the necessity of death and sacrifice; Ex.4:24-26, cf.Gen.17:14; Col.2:13

baptism--Rom.6:3-4; Col.2:12; cf.Lk.12:50​
2) Cure/cleansing
the cutting away implied needful removal of offense or cleansing, Gen.34:14-24; Ex.6:12,30; Jer.6:10; Is.52:1; cf.Lev.19:23-25

baptism--1Pet.3:21; Mk.1:4; Act.2:38; Act.22:16; Heb.10:22; cf.Heb.9:22​
3) New humanity
the location of the cut pointed to an ineradicable, intergenerational fault affecting the whole race (scope), and the world was divided between those who became circumcised and those who continued without; Hab.2:16; 1Sam.14:6; Ezk.32:17-32; Ezk.44:7,9; Jer.9:23-26; Ex.12:43-49

baptism--Mt.3:7-12; Lk.7:29-30; Mt.28:19-20; Mk.16:16; Eph.4:4-6​
4) Seed of life
the fact that it was in such a vital place pointed further to a paradoxical situation in which to create more people naturally was simply to create more death, the instrument of life-giving was in reality propagating death, delaying it and even magnifying its hideous effects; the natural resolution would be to geld, to go sterile, and so terminate the sinful race—obviously unacceptable if the goal is to save the race; so the supernatural resolution is to remedy the defect. Jsh.24:2-3&etc., cf.Jsh.5:9 & Dt.30:19; 1Chr.16:12-14; Hos.9:10-17; Ps.87:4-6; Is.51:1-2, cf.Is.61:9, Is.65:23

baptism--new life in Christ's resurrection, Col.2:13; 1Pet.3:21; new life in Christ's body, 1Cor.12:12-13,27; cf.Gal.3:29, re. seed of Abraham; see also Jn.3:5 (associated with the new birth); Jn.4:7-15 & Rev.21:6 (water of life); Tit.3:4-6 (washing of regeneration)​
5) Token/Symbolic judgment
the cut was a token removal, though painful, something that compelled deliberation before and after, both on the cost of the solution as well as the source of the solution. One had to look to the supernatural—to God—for his solution. 1Sam.18:27; Gal.5:12; cf.Ex.13:15; Lk.2:21-24

baptism--1Cor.10:1-2; 1Pet.3:20​


Significant related issues
Union with a mediator:
Abraham, Gen.18:18-19; Moses, 1Cor.10:2; Christ, Gal.3:27​
Name Associations:
OT: Gen.48:15-16; Is.43:1-7, cf.Is:63:19; 2Chr.7:14; Nu.6:27; {Lk.1:59 & 2:21}, cf.Is.4:1; Is.65:15; Am.9:11-12

NT: Mt.28:19; Act.19:5; 2Tim.2:19; Rev.22:4​
Sign/seal
circumcision: Rom.4:11
baptism: 2Cor.1:21-22; Eph.1:13-14

sign: something that points to something else
seal: something that marks or reminds re. God’s claims of ownership and of his oath​


Dispensation-specific qualifiers to the signs
OT circumcision illustrated salvation coming specifically by a male descendant of Abraham (then Isaac, Jacob, Judah, finally David)

NT baptism illustrates that general outpouring/anointing by the Holy Spirit unto New Covenant believers, Jn.7:39; Act.1:5 & 2:17​
 
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Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
I actually get that point pretty well. Your train of argument seems to be that Paul's discussion on circumcision doesn't, in any way, change the theology of cirucumcision with respect to Abraham or the OT economy, and I think we need to allow for that. It may very well be that the Jewish objectors have abused the sign and its meaning. and could not Paul be using this as an occasion to do away with the external sign and emphasize the reality?

the parallel thing happens in new perspective on Paul debates. They say that Judaism was always a religion of election and grace, so Paul couldn't have been abrogating anything, or bringing in anything innovative. Well, whatever Paul says, he says to the current state of affairs and so speaks against it, thereby overturning the status quo to establish the new. Same thing here.

I disagree that Paul sees Abraham as merely the best exemplar among many. It may be that Isaac and Jacob were men of faith, but they had "inherited" covenant status from birth. There is a substantive difference between Abraham and the rest with regard to their faith, and Abraham is chosen to be the type of Gentile faith.

Your response indicates you didn't "get it" very well at all In Suk. You're so focused on Paul creating a new theology of circumcision in this portion of Scripture that you seem completely unaware of the train of thought of the Romans 2-5 altogether.

Paul hammers the unrighteousness of man over and over again in Romans 2-3 and then focuses on the solution to the problem at the end of Romans 3 with God being the just and the justifier of Jew and Gentile in the Person and work of Christ. He then drives the point home further for the Jew in asking them to consider that this is not novel and reminds them that it was by faith that Abraham was justified and that he received the sign of circumcision afterward to drive home to the Jew that Circumcision and Torah are not justifying.

You would have Paul interrupt the very point that he's been struggling to drive home for Jews and go on some strange excursion into circumcision and how the nature of the sign has been changed. You seem oblivious to basic rules of exegesis and context. You're pushing Paul's argument out of the text in order to insert a pet concept by jumping in the middle of his argument and ignoring surrounding context and what has come before and after.

Here's how Paul would appear using your logic:
1. The Gospel is the revelation of the righteousness of God.
2. All men are unrighteous.
3. Gentiles are unrighteous.
4. Those who have the Law are unrighteous.
5. A righteousness apart from the Law has now been revealed in Christ.
6. Those who have faith in Christ are justified in Him.
7. Boasting is excluded.
8. Now let's take a break from the Gospel when we're talking about Abraham and let me tell you how circumcision has changed.
9. We now have peace with God in Christ.

This would be an absurd aside. Your eisogesis in this portion of the Scripture is very sad. You are missing a veritable gold mine of truth about the nature of saving faith in Abraham as that is what is in view in Romans 4. Instead, you are obscuring something of great consequence for a pet theory.

Your note about the NPP is equally as irrelevant as this issue is not one of trying to import Jewish beliefs into the text but simply following an argument that Paul is laying out carefully and clearly even if we know little or nothing about what the Jews thought about circumcision from sources outside the Scriptures. Of course the fact of the matter is that one does not need extra-Biblical sources to see the Pharisees arguing with Christ and with Paul repeatedly over the charge that they are "sons of Abraham" and that they are circumcised and have the Torah. These are problems self-evident from the text.
 

steadfast7

Puritan Board Junior
Rich, I have no objection to your correct understanding of Paul's argument. I honestly think it's you who is eisogeting my argument ad absurdum. Nothing I have presented takes away from Paul's argument in Romans - at all. My point has everything to do with the gospel and is not a distraction whatsoever. What I DO think is detrimental to the gospel is the insistence that NOTHING has changed in the economies or nature of covenant membership now that an alien righteousness has been revealed from faith to faith.

My point is not really an argument, simply an observation: Paul is upset that Jews place prioritize circumcision and Jewishness. So, Paul puts the priority on faith above circumcision and makes this the pattern to follow (nothing new here). I object to the appraisal that there has been no re-orientation at all with respect to the theology of circumcision. It seems clear to me that now that Paul lifts up Abraham's example (ie. being circumcised AFTER faith) as representative of salvation, then scripture and necessary consequence would have us practice believers baptism, rather than to revert to the model of Isaac and the descendants (ie. being born with covenant status on the basis of our parents' faith). With regard to Rev. Bruce's helpful presentation of the meaning of circumcision, I (and many credos) struggle to see how those realites can apply to infants.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
What I DO think is detrimental to the gospel is the insistence that NOTHING has changed in the economies or nature of covenant membership now that an alien righteousness has been revealed from faith to faith

I have not made any such point that *nothing* has changed. The issue I have with what you're presenting is that you're not exegeting Romans 4 but importing ideas. Paul's purpose in raising circumcision in this passage is very focused and it's a matter of allowing him to focus on that point where he's not dealing with a change in administration in this passage. There are other portions of Scripture that may be appealed to.

Furthermore, your statement implies that an "alien righteousness" was revealed for the first time in the Gospels. I think that's part of your fundamental problem and I'm going to have to go through an exercise for that reason.

Let me make this plainer. You are asserting that, exegetically, one of Paul's priorities in Romans 4 is to present a new administration in the Covenant because *now* (not before Christ came) an alien righteousness has been revealed.

Let us see your exegesis in operation. Below, I'm going to break Paul's presentation in to several sentences and number them. Below each line, I want you to step through each line and exegete that line without bringing anything into it. Focus on grammar and syntax. Note that the sentence numbers do not correspond to verse numbers. Provide no more that 2-3 sentences that provides an explanation or restatement of each line.

1. What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.

2. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.”

3. Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,

4. just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:

“Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven,
and whose sins are covered;
blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”

5. Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised?

6. We say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness. How then was it counted to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised?

7. It was not after, but before he was circumcised. He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised.

8. The purpose was to make him the father of all who believe without being circumcised, so that righteousness would be counted to them as well, and to make him the father of the circumcised who are not merely circumcised but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.

9. For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith.

10. For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void.

11. For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.

12. That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,

13. as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.

14. In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.”

15. He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah's womb.

16. No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.

17. That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.”

18. But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also.

19. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
From your #69 above:
With regard to Rev. Bruce's helpful presentation of the meaning of circumcision, I (and many credos) struggle to see how those realites can apply to infants.
And from my #63 above:
it seems to me that the substance of your objection must be just as telling against the practice of infant-circumcision
In Suk,
Please realize, I seldom approach these discussions with a thought to "convert" another person, and I do not expect to persuade you. My goal is typically to help a person convinced as you are to understand the position he disagrees with. I have spent considerable time and patience gaining understanding of the credo-baptist positions, so as to be able to represent them fairly and accurately.

Observe from the quotes above, that I was able to anticipate your reaction to what I wrote regarding the substantively identical declarations of BOTH of these covenant-signs. You asked in post #62 to have me defend one proposition concerning the purpose and meaning of circumcision in the OT. I did far more than that, giving no less than FIVE propositions, which I paralleled with baptism in the New Covenant, having the same basic import.

Now, these five are simply condensed into (or expanded from) my main proposition, which was and continues to be: that the purpose and meaning of the covenant-signs are essentially the same under both dispensations.

Your reaction, while not wholly unexpected, is nevertheless disappointing. Do the signs teach the same realities, or don't they? If they do, then your objection to the application of those realities--or the signs of those realities--to infants is equally directed toward those in the pre-Incarnation era and those in the post-Incarnation era. If you are struggling to see such application in the present era, how is it any clearer when looking to the previous one?

If the signs (in your mind) still do not have the same essential teaching, then what actually is helpful about my presentation? Were you just being "nice"? By all means, spell out the differences you have with what I wrote.

Obviously, in Gen.17, we are face-to-face with a plain statement of covenant-inclusion of infants. So, clearly one needs either to show that this is some other covenant than the covenant-of-grace, or two distinct covenants under one presentation, or there are profound differences between the Abrahamic covenant and the Christ covenant. Certain baptists have so concluded and taught any or all these.

As someone who sincerely wants to follow Scripture's teaching, and who believes the covenant substance is the same--and the signs of each era teach the same substance--I want to know where (if so) the late exclusion of infants is expressed. Absent a cogent explanation, I'm going to have to conclude that my recognition of continuity here is well-expressed in the practice of infant-baptism.
 
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