Regardless of when the sacrament of baptism is performed, the only effective catalyst that can make it efficacious for blessing is faith—living, breathing, active, evangelical faith. Otherwise we are just applying a dead sign to dead sinners. Otherwise we are just sprinkling water on the headstones in a cemetery. Otherwise we are just engaging in religious mummeries. Now the Westminster Confession rightly tells us that the efficacy of baptism is not anchored to the moment of administration—if it were, it would be really easy to get the wrong idea, thinking that the grace goes in when the water goes on. No, the covenant is sealed when the water goes on, but salvation? When it comes to salvation, whether our own or this little child’s, we do not trust this moment, we do not trust the water, we do not trust the minister. We trust in Christ.
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