Sacramentum Mundi Online

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The Baptists, with 26 million members, form one of the world’s largest Protestant bodies but constitute more a religious movement than a well-defined Church or sect.

1. Origins and history. In the 16th century, printed translations of the Bible into the vernacular, humanism and the Reformation attracted the attention of laymen to primitive Christianity and thus to the problem of the baptism of believers. Both Luther and Calvin taught that baptism was a confession of faith and that faith was necessary to obtain divine forgiv…

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John Charles Maraldo, “Baptists”, in: Sacramentum Mundi Online, General Editor Karl Rahner, SJ. Consulted online on 30 September 2023 <>
First published online: 2016

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