Baptism and the Reformation
by Dr. Stephen M. Davis
The history of the development of Christian doctrine provides fascinating insight on issues that continue to hold our attention and generate discussion in our day. Perhaps no other issue was and is more volatile than that of baptism. The Reformed faith has retained the practice of infant baptism, which has been viewed alternately, depending on one’s conviction, either as going back to apostolic practice or as a compromise with the Roman Church. No small dissension resulted from opposing views as seen in the Reformers’ writings, particularly for our purposes, in the writings of Ulrich Zwingli (1484-1531), the great Reformer in Zurich; George Blaurock (d. 1529), who wrote The Hutterite Chronicle to recount the beginnings of the Anabaptist movement in Zurich; and Menno Simons (1496-1561), from whom the present-day Mennonites draw their name. The Schleitheim Confession of Faith (1527) also addressed this controversy.