A Response to Ian Clary on Infant Baptism

In a comment on a previous post on infant baptism, Ian Clary said the following:

My question is, how does the language of Jeremiah’s new covenant prophecy apply to children in the new covenant itself? Do children, by virtue of baptism, have the law written on their mind and hearts? Do children, by virtue of baptism, have status as God’s people? Do children, by virtue of baptism, know the Lord? Do children (ad nauseum), have their wickedness forgiven? Does God remember their sins no more?

This is all salvation language, and to me, in order for you to affirm children’s membership in the new covenant is to affirm baptismal regeneration.

I was just reading through a response to Greg Welty’s position on credobaptism by Mark Horne and thought this extended quote was especially poignant. Just replace “Mr. Welty” for “Ian Clary”:  

I don’t find Mr. Welty’s assumption that the ‘three blessings’ listed by Jeremiah are identical to what we call ‘regeneration’ to be well grounded. Again, consider the language of Hebrews: For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God, and put Him to open shame (Heb. 6:4-6).

Now the people mentioned above are obviously not elect or truly regenerate because, if they were, they would continue in faith. Yet, the author of Hebrews does not feel obligated to deny the above blessings have been experienced by these apostates. On the contrary, he underscores them in order to emphasize the heinousness of their sin.

Thus, I don’t see why one could not list the blessings mentioned by Jeremiah as experienced by some non-elect people. Jeremiah says that the members of the New Covenant will have the Law written on their hearts? (Heb. 10:16). The author of Hebrews says that such people will be subject to a much more severe punishment for treachery against such a great blessing (Heb. 10:26-31).

Jeremiah says that all members of the New Covenant will know God? The apostle Peter says that there are those who “have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” and are, therefore, worse than they were before since they have fallen back into sin (2 Pet. 2:20; c.f. 1:2).

Jeremiah says that all their sins will be forgiven? The apostle Peter speaks of one “having forgotten his purification from his former sins” (2 Pet. 1:9).