By Ch.A. Hawley
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Additional resources for A Critical Examination of the Peshitta Version of the Book of Ezra
And many of the greatest English theologians, even among those not most closely affiliated with Geneva, from the very earliest days of the Reformation, have repudiated the "cruel judgment" of the Church of Rome as to the fate of infants dying unbaptized. But this repudiation was neither immediate, nor has it ever been universal. The second of the Ten Articles of Henry VIII. " The first liturgy embodied the same implication.  But there have never lacked those in the Church of England who still taught the necessity of baptism to salvation.
Accordingly there are many—adults and infants—of whose salvation we may be sure, but of reprobation we cannot be sure; such a judgment is necessarily unsafe even as to adults apparently living in sin, while as to infants who "die and give no sign," it is presumptuous and rash in the extreme. The above is practically an outline of the teaching of Zwingli. He himself worked it out in its logical completeness, and taught: 1. That all believers are elect and hence are saved, though we cannot know infallibly who are true believers except in our own case.
Men are not constituted members of Christ through the Church, but members of the Church through Christ; they are not made the members of Christ by baptism which the Church gives, but by faith, the gift of God; and baptism is the Church's recognition of this inner fact. The full benefit of this better apprehension of the nature of that Church of God membership in which is the condition of salvation, was not reaped, however, by all Protestants in equal measure. It was the strength of the Lutheran movement that it worked out its positions not theoretically or all at once, but step by step, as it was forced on by the logic of events and experience.