baptism in the Bible

The First Century Family – What Can We Validly Infer from Household Baptisms: The New Oikos Formula

Abstract – As we consider biblical revelation as it relates to marriage and family, all of the data matters. From Acts and the Epistles there are only nine individuals (explicitly named or described) who were baptized. It will be argued that six of these baptisms are “household baptisms.” This pattern has led to a century old discussion on the “oikos [household] formula” and what it means or does not mean. That debate between the likes of Joachim Jeremias and Kurt Aland  (circa 1960) set the stage for the current discussion about family solidarity and the ordinances of baptism and communion in the NT. What may we validly infer from this set of facts? I will work through the pattern and provide conclusions consistent with the implications.

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Gregg Strawbridge

Rev. Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D. is the pastor of All Saints Church in the Lancaster, PA area.

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