Is Infant Baptism a required belief/practice?

Discussion in 'Sacraments, Sacred Rites, and Holy Orders' started by Religious Fanatic, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    1,807
    Likes Received:
    1,322
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    The English Reformation happened because Papal and Romish doctrines had contradicted the doctrine of the Church Fathers though... The argument made was that just because a doctrine was modern or current at the time doesn't mean it was right, and the Anglicans sacrificed their lives to return doctrine away from modern errors to the early and universal apostolic truths...

    It was as far away from extolling individual preferences as you could imagine! Once the Anglican Church had recovered the apostolic doctrine, they bound the whole Church of England in one unbreakable bond of liturgy, with the Book of Common Prayer and the Anglican doctrines mandated and uniformly legislated to every parish and congregation in the smallest nook of the Church, departure from which was sought out in the Courts of Arches and the Star Chamber

    For example as the recent document on Lent had posted, if you omitted your fish fast on Fridays in Lent, then you would be censured, and made to do penance by the ecclesiastical authority of the Church:

    "And it is enacted by the authority abovesaid, that it shall be lawful to all Archbishops and Bishops in their Dioceses, and to all others having Ecclesiastical or Spiritual jurisdiction, to enquire of every person that shall offend in these premises, and to punish every such offender by the Censurers of the Church, and to enjoin on him or them such penance, as shall be to the Spiritual Judge by his direction thought meet and convenient."
     
  2. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    Despotic! Baby out with bathwater. Change the name and do the same.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 26, 2019
  3. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

    Posts:
    266
    Likes Received:
    131
    Country:
    Kingdom of Heaven
    Religion:
    Christian
    In comtext isn’t rebirth here to be born again?:

    Jesus answered him:
    "3Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again (rebirth?) he cannot see the kingdom of God
    4Nicodemus said to him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?"
    5 Jesus answered, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
    6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
    7 Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.'
    8The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit."
    9Nicodemus said to him, "How can these things be?"
    10 Jesus answered him, "Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things?
    11Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you do not receive our testimony.
    12 If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?
    13 No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.
    14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
    15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
    16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
    17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
    18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.” (John 3:3-18)
     
    anglican74 and Rexlion like this.
  4. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    As Fidei Defensor pointed out, the current meaning of "regeneration" includes new birth, being born again. Today, "regeneration" is equated with having been redeemed and made a child of God.

    The problem is, the Bible teaches us very clearly that we are redeemed by God's grace through faith in Jesus our Savior. And it clearly does not teach that we are redeemed by faith plus baptism.

    John 3:36: He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. It does not say, 'he that believeth not or else is baptized not'.

    John 6:29: Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. Not, that ye believe and get baptized.

    Eph. 2:8-9: For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. Not by grace through baptism, or by grace through faith plus baptism. Just through faith. Baptism is an outward "work" but grace for adoption into God's Kingdom is entirely inward and is received by the inward faith that a person has when he believes in Christ.

    Gal 3:11-14 says: But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. We receive the promised Holy Spirit at the new birth; we do not receive the Holy Spirit through baptism but through faith. Otherwise this scripture would read, 'that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through baptism.'

    Someone is bound to say, what about Mark 16:15-16?
    Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
    He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

    But we see that Jesus never says, ‘Those who are 'baptized not' shall be damned.’ It’s only those who 'believe not' who are condemned. Here’s an illustration: those who drive to McDonald’s and pay for a Happy Meal will get a Happy Meal; but those who pay not will not get the Happy Meal. Yet those who 'drive not' can still go get a Happy Meal by walking, hitchhiking, bumming a ride, etc.
    Also, since one of the first principles of correct Bible interpretation is that any scripture must reconcile with all other scriptures and therefore must be interpreted in light of other scriptures, it would be unwise to conclude on the basis of this meager evidence that Jesus meant to make baptism an additional prerequisite.

    I could list many other scriptures. The N.T. as a whole teaches us that we receive God's grace and are reborn when we believe, as opposed to when we (as believers) get baptized. Baptism is something born-again believers do (after they've been born again) in a spirit of obedience and gratitude; or the believers may take their young children to be baptized in a spirit of faith, hope and love for their children.

    Therefore, we are left with two possibilities:
    1. the writers of the BCP had a somewhat different meaning for "regeneration" when they wrote the word,
    or
    2. the writers erred seriously in doctrine.

    Since I think we all reject #2, that leaves us with only one conclusion.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
    Tiffy likes this.
  5. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,710
    Likes Received:
    2,506
    Country:
    America
    Religion:
    Anglican
    Hold on, now this introduces two separate issues here:
    1. What the word "regeneration" means, to the Reformers in the Anglican/Christian tradition going back to the early church; versus what it's come to mean in the 20th century.

    2. Whether baptism is necessary for redemption.

    These are separate issues, so which of them would you want to discuss? Because as for point #1, I realize that "Today, regeneration is equated with having been redeemed" may be true for some people. But is it true for all? For example I live "today" and yet I do not make that equation, so am I wrong? And furthermore, who are these new people enforcing this new and changed understanding? Are they correct to make that change?

    And as for point #2, do you really want to deny the necessity of baptism?
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2019
  6. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    #1 -- It is now the common sense of the word today, and you yourself said, "I still have only the one meaning for regeneration: namely, New Birth, a refashioned soul that has been remade by God." I said that in today's understanding,
    regeneration = new birth = redeemed (they all go hand in hand: when we are born again we are redeemed from the consequences of sin and we are regenerated as new children of God and new creatures in Christ). Where do you see a critical distinction between being regenerated and being redeemed? Maybe we need your comprehensive definitions for each.

    #2 -- baptism is not "necessary" to be born again, but we can't proceed further regarding whether it is "necessary for redemption" until we have your full definitions.
     
  7. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,710
    Likes Received:
    2,506
    Country:
    America
    Religion:
    Anglican
    This is where I'd disagree. Sure they go "hand in hand", but does that mean they are equivalent? It brutally flattens the process of salvation.

    For example see Romans 8:29-30:
    "For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified."

    The items listed couldn't go MORE hand-in-hand than as in the passage above:
    -foreknowledge
    -predestination
    -calling
    -justification
    -glorification

    Would you say that these are all (more or less) equivalent to each other?

    This tragic flattening of the deep rich texture of our Faith is maybe the biggest flaw of modern born-again t-shirt-wearing evangelical Christianity. Our faith has a lot of components. It is not a cheap one-action parlor trick.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2019
  8. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    By the blood of Christ we have been born again.
    By the blood of Christ we have been redeemed.
    By the blood of Christ we have been spiritually regenerated.
    By the blood of Christ His righteousness has been imputed to us.
    By the blood of Christ we have been adopted as children of God and heirs together with Christ.

    These are all (metaphorically) facets of the same precious gem.

    Regeneration, or new birth, concentrates on the beginning of a new state of things spiritually within us.
    Redemption stresses the spiritual release from bondage (to the guilt and power of sin) by the payment of a ransom (or, some say, a purchase price... but let's not get into that).
    We couldn't have the regeneration without the redemption. Thus, my statement that they go hand in hand. Perhaps "equated" was a poor choice of words, but they are often viewed as different aspects of the singular, wondrous change that has taken place within the believer.

    And the key word in relation to the baptism issue is, "believer." A person who does not believe in Christ is not born again, is not redeemed, is not regenerated, and has no right to be baptized. But a person who does believe in Christ is born again, is redeemed is regenerated spiritually, and not only has the right but has the duty to be baptized.

    Yet if the believer (who is born again, redeemed, and regenerated) is ill informed regarding the great significance of baptism (or lacks the opportunity to be baptized) and therefore does not become baptized, who are we to adjudge him unfit for God's Kingdom? So I say that it is not absolutely necessary for salvation that one be baptized, for unbaptized people can enter the Kingdom; the thief on the cross next to Jesus was one such.
     
    Fidei Defensor likes this.
  9. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

    Posts:
    266
    Likes Received:
    131
    Country:
    Kingdom of Heaven
    Religion:
    Christian

    Well said! “What Can Wash Away My Sin? Nothing But the Blood of Jesus!:

    1852B974-EE0D-4703-A652-8EC09BD6D135.jpeg

    “..Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood--” (Revelation 1:5)

    “This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.” (1 John 1:5, 7)

    “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest place by the blood of Jesus..” (Hebrews 10:19)

    “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebres 9:14 KJV)

    “Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate.” (Hebrews 13:12 KJV)

    “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.” (Romans 5:9 KJV)

    “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28 KJV)

    I ask if baptism by water was necessary for salvation then what do you do with criminal at the cross?

    “But
    the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence?
    41 We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”
    42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. ”
    43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:40-43)
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2019
  10. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    Hereby an anomaly exists. It may look to some, who see things simplistically, that all that is required for salvation is 'belief in Christ' and that therefore atheists and sceptics are excluded from salvation on the basis of their non-belief while those who believe in Christ's historical existence are entitled to salvation. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    Saving faith, redeeming faith, regenerating faith, is more than mere intellectual acceptance of historical facts concerning Christ's existence or the entertainment of warm thoughts regarding his role in procuring salvation for us.

    Saving faith is a trust and obedience to God's word and directives. Heb.11:7-39, Heb.12:1-6. Essentially it is a willing and meek compliance and obedience to Christ's teaching and an unswerving spiritual loyalty to his person. John 20:27-29. It is more even than merely accepting, on an intellectual level, Christ Divinity. It is a matter of willingly and consciously subjecting onself obediently to his lordship and protection.
    .
     
  11. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

    Posts:
    266
    Likes Received:
    131
    Country:
    Kingdom of Heaven
    Religion:
    Christian
    And yet this is the Will of God:

    “Jesus asked, "Who is my mother? Who are my brothers? Pointing to his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother." (Matthew 12:48-50)

    “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe.All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day
    For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.” (John 6:35-40)
     
  12. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    It is even possible, (given that we are not told specifically which of the two Jesus addressed his words to), that they both arrived in paradise with him. One much to his relief, the other much to his surprise and relief. Matt.12:32, Luke 12:10.

    The same Greek word translated 'him' (αὐτός) is also translated elsewhere in the New Testament, 'them'.

    αὐτός
    STRONG’S NUMBER: g0846
    Dictionary Definition g0846. αὐτός autos; from the particle αὖ au (perhaps akin to the base of 109 through the idea of a baffling wind) (backward); the reflexive pronoun self, used (alone or in the comparative 1438) of the third person , and (with the proper personal pronoun) of the other persons: — her, it(-self), one, the other, (mine) own, said, (self-), the) same, ((him-, my-, thy- )self, (your-)selves, she, that, their(-s), them(-selves), there(-at, - by, -in, -into, -of, -on, -with), they, (these) things, this (man), those, together, very, which. Compare 848.
    AV (5118) - him 1947, them 1148, her 195.
     
  13. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    No anomaly. We are on the same page, really. You see, when I wrote the phrase "believe in Christ" I am implying a belief not merely that Jesus exists (even the demons believe that, and tremble), but a belief on a personal level that He is the Christ, the Messiah, the Anointed One, the Savior, and the Lord of that person's life. So, yes, the "believer" has faith that Jesus is his Lord, and lordship over one certainly carries with it a willing and conscious subjection.

    As long as we don't go further and claim that the above "believer" must also supplement his faith with good works in order to help earn his salvation, we are in agreement. The heart change which takes place in the believer, with the indwelling Holy Spirit working in the person who has subjected himself to lordship, will inevitably result in good works (which may stand the test of fire and result in additional rewards at the judgment).

    Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2019
  14. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    Not unless the other, derisive thief came to faith in Christ prior to expiring, for this Greek word (like all scripture) must be interpreted in light of surrounding context in scripture. Otherwise one might easily arrive at some wild conclusions that titillate the fancy, such as, "God is so loving, He would never let anyone go to hell, so we are all saved by default," as the Unitarians and even some Lutherans believe.
     
  15. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,710
    Likes Received:
    2,506
    Country:
    America
    Religion:
    Anglican
    Metaphorically, or actually? There's a big difference!

    "Metaphorically" a lot of things can be "like" other things. You and I, both human beings, are metaphorically "a human being", "the same human being", etc. But we are actually two different and distinct human beings. Just so, theological concepts may be connected with each other but actually, ontologically, are different things that happen to be related to one another.

    So I ask again: is predestination the same thing, in its definition, as justification? Or are these two separate concepts, despite being joined so closely in the Will of God, as revealed in the Scriptures? Because if predestination and justification may be different though related, then so can other theological concepts may be different though related.
     
  16. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. Acts 2:21, Rom.10:13.

    Are you suggesting the supposedly unrepentant one was quite happy to remain where he was, and rather preferred to believe that Christ was utterly incapable of saving Himself and them? How cynical do you consider his request to have been? Wouldn't that be a very desperate way for an atheist to make a point?

    Sure he was bitter, angry, abusive and desperate, but wouldn't we all be in his predicament. How often have I heard people ask, "Why has God allowed this to happen to me, why didn't He do something". Do you suppose God's standard answer to them is "Tough luck sucker, suck it up and stop complaining. I've done this to you, get used to it".

    I don't think so, somehow. That seems more like a fallible human response to me, not the response of a God prepared to willingly undergo the same fate as two reprobates, probably little worse than the rest of us, at heart. Jer.17:9.

    But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, (in Greek - possibly them), Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

    The point I am trying to make is that the TEXT in Greek is not specific concerning exactly to whom Jesus actually addressed the words He spoke. WE ASSUME that Christ's words were intended to EXCLUDE the one that 'railed against him'. But the Greek of the TEXT does not specifically support our presumption. Christ's words may have been addressed to both of them.

    It looks, in English, as if Jesus specifically spoke only to the 'Repentant' thief. Both heard what he said though, and may have believed what He said. We are not told if either of them actually did 'believe' what Jesus said. All we have is the fact that Jesus said that at least one of them, and perhaps both, would be that very day in Paradise with Him.

    I eagerly anticipate discovering which of those two possible option turns out to be the case. It will be more first research asignment when I get to Paradise.

    Actually neither was truly 'Repentant'. The one which we claim was repentant was merely being honest about his guilt. That is not repentance, that is honesty. There is no record of his commitment, nor indeed any opportunity for amendment of his ways. Repentance involves turning from sin and changing ones ways. He had no time to do any of that. He, in his sinful state, cast his fate upon Christ alone and relied upon Christ's acceptance and ability to carry out His Word.

    Much the same as we all do, if we are properly circumcised of heart.
    .
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2019
  17. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    1,796
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican Christian
    Not the same thing. Separate concepts. Other theological concepts may also be 'different though related'.... however, this is no guarantee that all theological concepts are 'different though related'. So it seems like we're administering a drubbing to a deceased equine. :hmm:
     
  18. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    You will get used to equine flagelation here my friend. :deadhorse:

    You are correct in your assertion that Justification and Regeneration are quite different things.

    The Nature and Elements of Justification. Justification may be defined as that legal act of God by which. He declares the sinner righteous on the basis of the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. It is not an act or process of renewal, such as regeneration, conversion, or sanctification, and does not affect the condition but the state of the sinner. It differs from sanctification in several particulars. Justification takes place outside of the sinner in the tribunal of God, removes the guilt of sin, and is an act which is complete at once and for all time; while sanctification takes place in man, removes the pollution of sin, and is a continuous and lifelong process. We distinguish two elements in justification, namely:

    (a) The forgiveness of sins on the basis of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. The pardon granted applies to all sins, past, present, and future, and therefore does not admit of repetition, Ps. 103:12; Isa. 44:22; Rom. 5:21; Rom.8:1; Rom. 8:32-34; Heb. 10:14. This does not mean that we need no more pray for forgiveness, for the consciousness of guilt remains, creates a feeling of separation, and makes it necessary to seek repeatedly the comforting assurance of forgiveness, Ps. 25:7; Ps. 32:5; Ps. 51:1; Matt. 6:12; Jas. 5:15; 1 John 1:9.

    (b) The adoption as children of God. In justification God adopts believers as His children, that is, places them in the position of children and gives them all the rights of children, including the right to an eternal inheritance, Rom. 8:17; 1 Pet. 1:4. This legal sonship of believers should be distinguished from their moral sonship through regeneration and sanctification. Both are indicated in the following passages: John 1:12-13; Rom. 8:15-16; Gal. 4:5-6.
    .
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2019
  19. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,710
    Likes Received:
    2,506
    Country:
    America
    Religion:
    Anglican
    Okay, I'm glad we've established that. So then will you stand by your earlier statement that,
    Or will you accept that they are separate/different concepts, even though related?
     
  20. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    2,741
    Likes Received:
    1,242
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    You will get used to equine flagelation here my friend. :deadhorse:

    You are correct in your assertion that Justification and Regeneration are quite different things.

    The Nature and Elements of Justification. Justification may be defined as that legal act of God by which. He declares the sinner righteous on the basis of the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. It is not an act or process of renewal, such as regeneration, conversion, or sanctification, and does not affect the condition but the state of the sinner. It differs from sanctification in several particulars. Justification takes place outside side of the sinner in the tribunal of God, removes the guilt of sin, and is an act which is complete at once and for all time; while sanctification takes place in man, removes the pollution of sin, and is a continuous and lifelong process. We distinguish two elements in justification, namely:

    (a) The forgiveness of sins on the basis of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. The pardon granted applies to all sins, past, present, and future, and therefore does not admit of repetition, Ps. 103:12; Isa. 44:22; Rom. 5:21; Rom.8:1; Rom. 8:32-34; Heb. 10:14. This does not mean that we need no more pray for forgiveness, for the consciousness of guilt remains, creates a feeling of separation, and makes it necessary to seek repeatedly the comforting assurance of forgiveness, Ps. 25:7; Ps. 32:5; Ps. 51:1; Matt. 6:12; Jas. 5:15; 1 John 1:9.

    (b) The adoption as children of God. In justification God adopts believers as His children, that is, places them in the position of children and gives them all the rights of children, including the right to an eternal inheritance, Rom. 8:17; 1 Pet. 1:4. This legal sonship of believers should be distinguished from their moral sonship through regeneration and sanctification. Both are indicated in the following passages: John 1:12-13; Rom. 8:15-16; Gal. 4:5-6.
    .