This catechism is fully based on the scriptures. The references to scripture are indicated in parentheses with a letter. For example, the letter (a) points to the texts placed after the answer, also indicated with the letter (a).
Part 2 - Of Holy Baptism
69. How art you admonished and assured by holy baptism, that the one sacrifice of Christ upon the cross is of real advantage to you?
Thus: That Christ appointed this external washing with water, (a) adding thereto this promise, (b) that I am as certainly washed by his blood and Spirit from all the pollution of my soul, that is, from all my sins, (c) as I am washed externally with water, by which the filthiness of the body is commonly washed away.
(a) Matt.28:19. (b) Matt.28:19; Acts 2:38; Matt.3:11; Mark 16:16; John 1:33; Rom.6:3,4. (c) 1 Pet.3:21; Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3
70. What is it to be washed with the blood and Spirit of Christ?
It is to receive of God the remission of sins, freely, for the sake of Christ’s blood, which he shed for us by his sacrifice upon the cross; (a) and also to be renewed by the Holy Spirit, and sanctified to be members of Christ, that so we may more and more die unto sin, and lead holy and unblamable lives. (b)
(a) Heb.12:24; 1 Pet.1:2; Rev.1:5; Rev.7:14; Zech.13:1; Ezek.36:25. (b) John 1:33; John 3:5; 1 Cor.6:11; 1 Cor.12:13; Rom.6:4; Col.2:12.
71. Where has Christ promised us, that he will as certainly wash us by his blood and Spirit, as we are washed with the water of baptism?
In the institution of baptism, which is thus expressed: “Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”, Matt.28:19. And “he that believeth, and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not, shall be damned.”, Mark 16:16. This promise is also repeated, where the scripture calls baptism “the washing of regeneration” and the washing away of sins. (a)
(a) Tit.3:5; Acts 22:16.
72. Is then the external baptism with water the washing away of sin itself?
Not at all: (a) for the blood of Jesus Christ only, and the Holy Spirit cleanse us from all sin. (b)
(a) Matt.3:11; 1 Pet.3:21; Eph.5:26,27. (b) 1 John 1:7; 1 Cor.6:11.
73. Why then does the Holy Spirit call baptism “the washing of regeneration,” and “the washing away of sins”?
God speaks thus not without great cause, to wit, not only thereby to teach us, that as the filth of the body is purged away by water, so our sins are removed by the blood and Spirit of Jesus Christ; (a) but especially that by this divine pledge and sign he may assure us, that we are spiritually cleansed from our sins as really, as we are externally washed with water. (b)
(a) Rev.1:5; Rev.7:14; 1 Cor.6:11. (b) Mark 16:16; Gal.3:27.
74. Are infants also to be baptized?
Yes: for since they, as well as the adult, are included in the covenant and church of God; (a) and since redemption from sin (b) by the blood of Christ, and the Holy Spirit, the author of faith, is promised to them no less than to the adult; (c) they must therefore by baptism, as a sign of the covenant, be also admitted into the christian church; and be distinguished from the children of unbelievers (d) as was done in the old covenant or testament by circumcision, (e) instead of which baptism is instituted (f) in the new covenant.
(a) Gen.17:7. (b) Matt.19:14. (c) Luke 1:15; Ps.22:10; Is.44:1-3; Acts 2:39. (d) Acts 10:47. (e) Gen.17:14. (f) Col.2:11-13.
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