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feed as such, or any other man's natural seed ? It is indeed in the New Testanient called a seal of the righteousness of the faith which Abraham had, being y'et uncircumcised, but then it was no seal of that, nor of any thing else to others, but to Abraham only; namely, that that righteousness which he had by faith before he was circumcised, would come upon, or be imputed to the uncircumcifed Gentiles; and accordingly this mark continued in the flesh of his posterity, until the gospel, publishing justification by the righteousness of faith, was ordered to be preached to the Gentiles. Wherefore,
Fourtbly, Seeing circumcision was no seal of the covenant of grace, baptism, which it is pretended was instituted in the room of it, can be no seal of it neither, and to not to be administered as such to the children of professed believers, as is said, p. 25 The text in Colossians ii. 11. falls Thort of proving that baptifom is instituted in the room of circumcifion; lince the apostle is speaking, not of circumcision in the flesh, but in the Spirit; and by which he means not the outward ordinance of baptism, that is distinguished from it “, but an inward work of grace upon the heart; fpiricual circumcision; called the circumcision of Christ; which to understand as the fame, is not to make an unreasonable tautoingy; it makes none at all, and much less nonsense, as this writer suggests; but beautitully completes the description the apostle gives of spiritual circumcision ; first, by the manner of its performance, without hands; then by the matter and substance of it, the putting off the body of the sins of the flesh; and lastly, by the author of it, Christ, who by his spirit produces it.
The argument from analogy is weak and insufficient; though some little agreement between circuncifion and baptism may be imagined, and seein to be in the signification of them, yet the difference between them is notorious ; they differ in their subječts, uses, manner of administration, and the administrators of them; nor is it true, what is suggested, that they are both facraments of admiffion into the church ; nor are they badges of relation to God or Christ, nor signs and seals of the covenant of grace. Nor need we be under any concern about any ordinance coming in the room of circumcision, and answering to that Jewish rite. Nor is there any necesity of any, no more than of a pope in the room of an high priest, or of any festivals to answer to those of the passover, pentecoft, and feast of tabernacles; nor does the Lord's supper answer to the pailuver, and come in the room of it; it is Christ that answers to it, and is the passover sacrificed for us : but what makes it quite clear and plain, that baprisin does not succeed circumcision, or come in the room of it, is, that it was in force and use before circumcision was abolished, which was not until the death of
3 0 2
• See the divine Right of Infant-baptism examined, &c. p 56, &c. Christ, whereas John adıninistered baptism, and Christ himself was baptized, and many others, some years before that time; and therefore baptism cannot be said, with any propriery, to succeed circumcision, when it was in force before the other was out of date: beldes, if it did, it is no seal of the covenant of grace, nor to be administered to infants for such an use; for what fpiritual blefling, what blessing of grace in the covenant, does baptism seal, or can seal, assure of, and secure unto the carnal feed of believers ? Let it be named if it can
o Rom. iv. 11. and the Reply, p. 43.
d Ver 12.
Fiftbly, It is not indisputably evident, as this Gentleman fays, p. 29. but indisputably false, that the apostles acknowledged and allowed the covenantrelation and interest of children, under the gospel, as well as under the law; by which I take it for granted he means, their relation and interest in the covenant of grace: that relation and interest, the natural seed of Abrabam, as such, had not under the law; nor have the natural seed of believers, as such, the fame under the gospel. This is not to be proved from his text, as has been shewn already: nor from Romans xi. 16, 17. where by the root and branches, are not meant Abraham and his posterity, or natural feed; nor by the olive. tree the Jewish church; but the gospel church-state in its first foundation, out of which were left the Jews that believed not in Chrilt, meant by the branches broken off ; and which church was constituted of those that believed in him; and these were the root and first-fruits, which being boly, are the pledge and earnest of the future conversion and holiness of that people the apostle is speaking of in the context; and into which church-state the Gentiles that believed were received, and are the branches grafted in, which partook of the root and fatness of the olive-tree; that is, of the goodness and fatness of the house of God, the ordinances and privileges of it: and in this paffage not a word is said of the covenant-relation, and interest of children under the gospel; not a syllable about baptism, much less of Infanc-baptism ; nor can any thing in favour of it be inferred from it'; nor can any thing of this kind be proved from 1 Corintbians vii. 14. real internal holiness is rejected by our author, as the sense of this and the preceding passage; but he pleads for a federal holiness; but what that is, as distinct from real holiness, let it be said if it can: the only holiness which the covenant of grace promises and provides for, and which only is proper federal holinefs, is real holiness of heart and life : no other than matrimonial holiness, or lawful marriage, can be meant in the Corinthian text; it is such a holiness with which the unbelieving parent is sanctified, husband or wife ; and if it is a federal holiness, the unbeliever ought to be allowed to be in covenant; and if this gives a right to baptism, ought to be
baptized, e See Reply, p. 44-47.
See the Reply, p. 64, 65. & See Jer. xxxi, 33. Ezek. xxxvi. 26, 27,
baptized, as well as their carnal issue; and have as good a right to it, surely, as they who have their holiness from them, and which even depends upon
the fanctification of the unbelieving parent. I am able to prove, from innumerable instances in Jewish writings, that the words sanctify and fanétified, are used for espouse and espoused, and the apostle, being a Jew, adopts the same language ; and let men wriggle and wrangle as long as they can, no other sense can be put upon the words, than of a legitimate marriage and offspring; nothing else will suit with the case proposed to the apostle, and with his answer and reasoning about it; and which sense has been allowed by many learned Pædobaptifts; and I cannot forbear transcribing, what I have elsewhere done, the honeft confession of Musculus : “ Formerly, says he, I have abused this “ place against the Anabaptists, thinking the meaning was, that the children “ were holy for the parents faith, which, though true, the present place makes “ nothing for the purpose 6."
Sixthly, From what has been observed, it is not proved, as our author asserts, P. 32. that the apostles looked on the children of believing parents as having an interest in the covenant of grace; and falfe is it, to the last degree of fallhood, what he infers from thence, that “ then we have undeniable evidence that
they did in fact baptize the children of all profesling believers; and that they “ understood their commission as authorizing them fo to do, Matthew xxviii. 19. Let one single fact be produced, one undeniable instance of the apostles baptizing an intant of any, professor or profane, and we will give up che cause at once, and say no more. Nor did the apostles, nor could the apostles understand the commission as authorizing them to baptize infants. What this Gentleman observes, that the word teach is in the original to make difciples, or learn : Be it so, it is not applicable to new-born babes, who are not capable of learning any thing, and much less of divine and spiricual things, of Christ and his gospel, and the doctrines of it ; of which kind of learning only can the commission be understood : nor are the children of believing parents called disciples, Asts xv. 10. adult persons are meant; and by the yoke attempted to be put on their necks, not circumcision, which was not intolerable, but the doctrine of the necessity of that, and other Mosaic rices, and even of keeping the whole law in order to falvation ; this was intolerable.
This author further observes, that children must be included in the words all nations, mentioned in the commillion. If they are included so as to be baptized, and if this phrase is to be understood without any limitation or restriction, then. not only the children of christian parents, but the children of Pagans, Jews, and Turks; yea, all adult persons, be they who they may, ever so vile and profli
gate, See the divine Right of Infant-baptism examined, p. 73-78. and the Reply, p. 55---58.
gate, since these are included in all nations; but the limitation is to those that are caught, and learn to become the disciples of Christ, and believe in him, as appears from Mark xvi. 15, 16'. Nor does it appear from the scriptureaccounts, that there is any probability, and much less the highest probability, as this writer says, p. 33. that it was the general practice of the apostles to baptize infants, and which he concludes from Lydia, the Jailor, and Stephanas; which instances do not afford the least probability of it*. To make it probable that there might be infant-children in those families, he observes, we read, when God smote the first-born in Egypt, there was not an house in which there was not one dead, consequently not an house in Egypt in which there was not a child: but he did not consider, that all the first-born of Egypt Nain, were not infancchildren ; but many of them might be men grown, of twenty, or thirty years of age, or more ; and of these, with those under such an age, and in infancy, it is not strange that there should be found one in every house! Our author adds, “suppose it had been said of one proselyted to the Jewish religion, that “ he and his houshold, or that he and all his were circumcised, would any doubt “ whether his infant-children were circumcised ? I believe not:” and to do I 100,; but not for the reason given, which is a false one ; for it never was a practice, either before or since Abraban's covenant, to receive children with their parents into a covenant-relation, if by that relation is meant relation to, and interest in the covenant of grace; but for this very good reason, because the Jews and their proselytes were commanded to circumcise their Infant-children; but God has no where commanded any to baptize their Infant-children ; and therefore when housholds are said to be baptized, this cannot be understood of infants, and especially when those in these housholds are represented as hearers of the word, believers in it, and persons possessed of spiritual joy and comfort.
Seventhly, The evidence this author gives of the practice of Infant-baptifin, from those that lived in the first, second, and third centuries, p. 34-40. comes
He produces no evidence from any writer of the first century, though there are several whose writings are extant, as Barnabas, Clemens Romanus, Hermas, Polycarp, and Ignatius. He begins with Irenus, as he is twice called; Irenæus is meant, of whom he says, that he only mentions Infant-baprilim tranfiently; but he does not mention it at all: it is not once mentioned in all his writings, as corrupted as they be; being some spurious, and for the most part translations, and these barbarous, and but few original pieces: the passage proJuced for his use, of the word regeneration for baptism, is not to the purpose ; since by the command of regenerating, Christ gave to his disciples, is not meant
the i See the Reply, p 58, 59, 62. * See the Reply, p. 63, 64.
the command of baptizing, but of teaching the doctrine of regeneration, and the necessity of it to falvation, and in order to baptism, the first and principal part of the commission of the apostles, as the order of the words shews. The other testimony which, he says, is plain for the baptism of infants, there is not a fyllable of it in it : Irenæus only says, “Christ came to save all; all I say, that
are born again unto God; infants, and little ones, and children, and young “ men, and old men.” Which is most true; for Christ came to save all of every age that are regenerated, and of which persons of every age are capable; but to interpret this of Christ's coming to save all that are baptized, is false; and is to make this ancient writer to speak an untruth: to prove that regeneration is used by him for baptisın, a passage is produced out of Justin Martyr, said to be his cotemporary, though Justin lived before him, in the middle of the second century, and should have been first mentioned; but will not serve his purpofe : for Justin is speaking of the manner of adult-baptifin, and not a word of infants; and of adult persons, not as regenerated by or in baptism ; for he speaks of them before as converted and believers, and consequently regenerated; and their baptism is plainly distinguished from regeneration. Of the sense of the passages of these two writers, see more in the Reply, p. 16–18. The argument from apostolic Tradition, p. 13, 14. Antipædobaptism, p. 9–20.
The next testimony produced is Origen, placed in the beginning of the third century, though it was rather towards the middle of it that he wrote and Alourished in, and should have been mentioned after Tertullian. The passages quoted from him are, the first out of his eighth homily on Leviticus, though the last clause in it does not belong to that, but is in the fourteenth homily on Luke, and the other is out of his epistle to the Romans : Now these are all taken out of Latin translations, full of interpolations, additions, and detractions; so that, as many learned men observe, “ one knows not when he " reads Origen, and is at a loss to find Origen in Origen.” Now whereas there are genuine works of his still extant in Greek, in them there is not the least hint of Infant-baptism, nor any reference to it, much less any express mention of it, not even as an apostolical tradition, as in the last passage produced; for so it should be rendered, not order, but tradition; on which I shall just observe what Bishop Taylor says: “ A tradition apostolical, if it be not consigned with
fuller testimony than of one person (Origen) whom all after-ages have con“ demned of many errors, will obtain so little repuration among those, who “ know that things have, upon greater authority, pretended to derive froin " the apostles, and yet fally; that it will be a great argument, that he is cre