John MacArthur on Infant Baptism

If you’re open to learning how an opponent  of Infant baptism argues, I do not recommend the following.  Then why did I post it.  First, because many people tend to listen to John MacArthur and run uncritically with everything he says.  Second, that if you’re going to oppose someone like a Presbyterian and their practice of paedobaptism (infant baptism), then you owe them the decency of representing their viewpoint accurately.  Do not build up straw men, only to tear them down, misleading your hearers who have trusted you to represent your opponent’s view accurately.

I DO NOT recommend or endorse John MacArthur’s outright misrepresentation of the paedobaptist position.

This entry was posted in Baptism, Infant Baptism, John MacArthur, Paedobaptism, Presbyterianism and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to John MacArthur on Infant Baptism

  1. Craig Benno says:

    I got up to 47 minutes and had to stop. In reality he is going on a Roman Catholic bash. He has so many holes in his argument its not funny. He on one moment argues that can’t argue from the silence of Scripture.. but then says Lydia never had a husband because he wasn’t mentioned in Scripture and wouldn’t have been part of her household. ( His overt complementarianism is coming through there)

    He is extremely good at building straw houses and destroying them.

  2. Simon says:

    “A world full of baptized non-Christians”

    I wonder how he knows who or who isn’t Christian. On a related point, isn’t it interesting that every heretical group adheres to something like “believers baptism”?

    On Craig’s point; yes arguing from the silence of Scripture on a certain issue is rather slippery – there are whole bunch of important issues that Scripture doesn’t explicitly talk about. I think the appropriateness of infant baptism is one such issue. Whatever your position on this issue, you must infer it from the text if you adhere to sola scriptura. As soon as we are talking about inferences, we can’t have 100% confidence of our position. You can pretend to be 100% confident about it, but this won’t wash with thinking people. One of the probs with guys like McArthur is that he thinks he’s right about everything and is rather smug about it as well. The way he deals with his opponents is very abrasive and uncharitable. This is justified by his misguided crusade for “truth”. I think he’s popular because people are searching for something to believe and someone to believe in and he his this superiority complex that is attractive to some people.

  3. Jon Hughes says:


    Well done for this. You move in wider circles than MacArthur, and are wiser for it.

  4. TC says:

    Simon, yes, at heart, MacArthur is a fundamentalist.

    Jon, it’s just that I read and listened to much better opponents of paedobaptism.

    • Jim K says:

      “Fundamentalist” – be a great discussion topic. I think it has actually lost its meaning over time. Who isn’t, at their core, a fundamentalist when it comes to their personal beliefs?

      Similar to how conservative/liberal definitions have changed over time. In the 1st century Paul’s writings were left-wing liberal (there’s neither male nor female…). Yet those who adhere to them today are considered conservative.

      All this to say, I no longer know what people mean when they refer to someone as a “fundamentalist.”

      I really enjoy reading your comments.

      Sola Deo Gloria

      • TC says:

        Jim K,

        Yes, word usage has a way of evolving on us. The examples are endless. Regarding “fundamentalist,” I had in mind MacArthur’s dogmatism that was characteristic of byone fundamentalist.

        True, at one level we are all fundamentalists, but MacArthur represents another level. 😉

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