Question and Answer
The OPC, original sin and immaculate conception
Do Presbyterians believe in original sin and immaculate conception? What method(s) of baptism do they employ?
Thank you for your questions to us. Let me answer them in the order you bring them.
Yes, we believe that the Bible teaches that all men are born with the guilt and corruption brought about by Adam's sin. As our Westminster Confession of Faith expresses it (in Chapter 6 regarding the Fall into sin):
3. They [our first parents] being the root of all mankind, the guilt of this sin was imputed; and the same death in sin, and corrupted nature, conveyed to all their posterity descending from them by ordinary generation.
Just as a note: that last phrase about "ordinary generation" specifically refers to the Virgin Birth of Jesus Christ, the only one born without this guilt and corruption.
From that previous quotation, you can see that we do not believe in the immaculate conception of Mary, the mother of Jesus. We believe that only Jesus Christ was born without sin.
We believe that the proper method of Baptism would be by sprinkling or pouring, though we accept immersion as a valid means. This is because the Biblical meaning of baptism refers to the washing and marking by the Holy Spirit, who descends from above.
I hope these answers are helpful.
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