Notes from Norman

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by Norman P. Grubb

As we take the broad general view of the teaching of the New Testament, it is plain that salvation and our relationship to God through Christ is wholly inward and spiritual. Spirit with spirit (I Cor. 6:17) Outward forms are always presented to us only as signs and symbols of inner grace. See such Scriptures as Romans 2: 28, 29 referring back to Moses’ statement in Deut. 10:16 and Galatians 6:15, Col. 2:11, 12. Even the Scriptures themselves are only an outward form, if just regarded as in the letter - II Cor. 3:16.
Therefore, we must be steady and not driven about by winds of doctrine (Ephesians 4:14) and fears of what man may seek to drive us into through particular emphasis on an isolated Scripture.
We can say, therefore, that baptism is given us as a normal sign of death and resurrection with Christ, and I would judge that the Scriptures do present it as a conscious confession of salvation, and that therefore the baptism of believers by immersion (note the “into” and “out of” of Acts 8:38, 39) is the true form of baptism, and not infant sprinkling.
But at the same time, it is faith that makes grace operative in us and that therefore those who accept it by faith that their baptism as infants was a token of them being members of Christ so soon as they consciously believe, are in the family of God as much as those who have taken the outward believers’ baptism.

From Knight of Faith Vol II