XXVII. Of Baptism. Baptism is not only a sign of profession, and mark of difference, whereby Christian men are discerned from others that be not christened, but it is also a sign of Regeneration or New-Birth, whereby, as by an instrument, they that receive Baptism rightly are grafted into the Church; the promises of the forgiveness of sin, and of our adoption to be the sons of God by the Holy Ghost, are visibly signed and sealed, Faith is confirmed, and Grace increased by virtue of prayer unto God. The Baptism of young Children is in any wise to be retained in the Church, as most agreeable with the institution of Christ. My view is that we undervalue Baptism. Baptism is a mark of difference. This suggests that difference should be in some way apparent - not simply invisible. Of course Baptism is a sacrament not magic, so there is a requirement that it be received rightly. Infant Baptism is to be retained, suggests that the idea of 'the whole household' is still in mind, despite the clear leaning toward individualism implied in the reformed positions already being at least apparent by the time the articles were first published. Whilst I think that regeneration and conversion are clearly related there are some clear differences in how they are understood. Conversion is more clearly understood in the greek word metanoia meaning 'to turn around' or 'go in another (perhaps opposite) direction'. Regeneration suggests new growth, and in the context of Baptism it seem to imply that this is the result of being grafted into a new root stock - namely Christ and his Church. Of course Justification and Sanctification are not unrelated, however they are not identical either, and in a way neither is a simple term. Dost thou, in the name of this Child, renounce the devil and all his works, the vain pomp and glory of the world, with all covetous desires of the same, and the carnal desires of the flesh, so that thou wilt not follow nor be led by them? I renounce them all. BCP ______________________________________________ Do you turn to Christ? I turn to Christ. Do you repent of your sins? I repent of my sins. Do you renounce evil? I renounce evil. Common Worship ___________________________________________ Do you reject the devil and all rebellion against God? I reject them. Do you renounce the deceit and corruption of evil? I renounce them. Do you repent of the sins that separate us from God and neighbour? I repent of them. Do you turn to Christ as Saviour? I turn to Christ. Do you submit to Christ as Lord? I submit to Christ. Do you come to Christ, the way, the truth and the life? I come to Christ. Common Worship______________________________________________ Our expectations of those who come for Baptism have traditionally not be onerous, and in the life of the Church there have been those who seek to make our expectations higher and those who seek to make them relaxed. The Creed that belongs with Baptism is the Apostle's Creed, though I notice that there is some movement towards more relaxed expressions of faith.