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IN HIS VARIED CHARACTERS IN THE FOUR GOSPELS.
BAPTISM IS NOT POURING.
" is now; putting the bodies into caves, rocks, and With a few more words, we conclude our review
" sides of hills was the usual mode.” The answer of Mr. Boardman's tract—"Baptism by Pouring.” to this is simple; there can be no objection to the
At pr. 10-11 we read—“Having been immersed immersion of a believer in water after that fashion. "myself, I know the arguments quite well about That is to say, if you can pile water up in a heap, o death and resurrection. (Rom. vi. ; Col. ii.)”
" | like a rock or a hill, you may so baptize him ; there And this is all the use which Mr. Boardman makes can be no objection to burial in that fashion, but bury of these Scriptures which, to a simple-minded Chris- the convert you must, if you would fulfil the Lord's tian, completely put an end to every difficulty! He command. says he knows, and then quietly shuts out the light. The passages in the above chapters which tell us
THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, plainly the meaning of Baptism, demolish at once all sophistry about pouring! In the first-named Scrip
(Continuance of Extract from “The Evangelists.") ture, believers are thus addressed
Without the death of the Lord Jesus, all his virtues “ Know ye not that so many of us as were baptized into and his ministry would be to us as nothing. In the Jesus Christ, were baptized into his death ?” (Rom. vi. 3.)
place that is called Calvary, or onward to that Here it is not water-baptism, as the context shows. place from the garden of Gethsemane, we see the Allusion is made to the reality of the accomplished great crisis, as we may surely call it, where all are work, which the ordinance of baptism sets forth in a engaged in their several characters, and all disposed figure. By faith in Jesus Christ, we understand how of, answered or satisfied, exposed, or revealed or that our union with Him immerses us into His death. glorified, according to their several deserving. What It puts an end to us, as respects the flesh. We are baptized into the death of Jesus Christ as a fact, in for us, by each of the Evangelists, in their different
a place, what a moment, presented to us and recorded the sight of God. Now see what follows—. Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death.'
Man is seen there, taking his place and acting his Because, by faith, we are immersed into His death, part, wretched and worthless as he is. He is there therefore we are buried with Him (by water). Christ in all variety of conditions ; in the Jew and in the died, we died; Christ was buried, we are buried. Gentile ; as rude and as cultivated ; in the civil and By the figure of burial in water, the Lord has given in the ecclesiastical place; as brought nigh or as left us to see how completely our old standing is put an in the distance; as privileged, I mean, or left to end to, by fellowship in Ilis death, through faith. himself. But whatever this variety may be, all are
" Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death; exposed to their shame. that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of The Gentile Pilate is there, occupying the seat of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death,
civil authority. But if we look there for righteouswe shall be also of his resurrection.” (Rom. vi. 4, 5.) ness, it is oppression we find. Pilate bore the sword Now look at the Epistle to the Colossians
not merely in vain, but for the punishment of those
who did well. He condemned the One whom he "In whom (Christ) ye are circumcised with the circumcision owned to be “just,” and of whom he had said, “ I made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the find no fault in Him : " and the soldiers, who served. flesh (all that was under judgment] by the circumcision (death under him, shared or exceeded his iniquity. of] Christ.” (Col. ii. 11.)
The Jewish scribes and priests, the ecclesiastical Here, again, we have union with Christ in death, thing of that hour, seek for false witness-and the and thereby the complete cutting off (circumcision) multitude who wait on them are one with them, and of the flesh-carnal nature, the entire) body of the cry out against the One who had been ministering to sins of the flesh. Therefore this Scripture also brings their need and sorrow all His days. in burial. “ Buried with Him in baptism, wherein They who passed by, mere travellers along the also ye are risen with (Him) through the faith of the road, (men left in the distance as to themselves,) operation of God, who hath raised Him from the revile, venting impotent hatred, as so many Shimeis dead.” (Col. ii. 12.)
in the day of David. And disciples, a people brought Can anything be more evident than the truth here nigh and privileged, betray the common corruption, taught in the inspired Word ? In water-baptism we and take part in this scene of shame to man, heartsee the believer buried, as dead, and also raised up lessly forsaking their Lord in the hour of danger, and again, as risen with Christ. The reality of both, is when He had looked for some to stand by Him. " through the faith of the operation of God.'' All is, thus, worthless. Exposed in all this variety, Without faith, water-baptism is an empty shadow, or Man is put to shame as in the face of creation, at something worse. But immersion, performed in faith, this crisis, this solemn moment of weighing him and is a sweet showing forth of the work of Christ in testing him, as for the last time. The woman with the believer--namely, fellowship in his death, burial, her box of ointment makes no exception. Her faith and resurrection. And, as an act of obedience, it is was of the operation of God; and beautiful as it was, precious in the sight of God.
to be had in remembrance through the whole In a footnote, Mr. Boardman says—"Burial of world, it is God's praise and His alone, through the old was not so much by laying under ground, as it Spirit.
as well as man, shews himself in this great Surely we may call this “the great crisis "-the crisis. He deceives and then destroys. He makes most solemn moment in the history of God's dealings his captive his victim, destroying by the very snare with His creatures. Wondrous assemblage of actors by which he had tempted. The bait becomes the and of actings, God and Jesus, man and Satan, angels, hook, as it always does in his hand. The sin we per- heaven, earth and hell, sin and death, and the world, petrate loses its charm the moment it is accomplished, all occupy their place, whether of shame, or of defeat, and then becomes the worm that dies not. The gold or of judgment, of virtues and of triumphs, of mani, and silver is cankered, and its rust eats the flesh as if festations and of glory. This is the record of each of it were fire. The thirty pieces of silver does this the Evangelists in his several way, or according to with Judas, the captive and the victim of Satan. his own method, under the Spirit. Our speculations
Jesus is here in His virtues and His victories ; can find no place. We have but to take up the virtues in all relationships, and victories over all lessons which they teach us, lessons for an ascertained that stood in His way. What patience in bearing and well-understood eternity. with His weak, selfish disciples? what dignity and calmness in answering His adversaries ! what selfconsecration, and surrender to the will of His Father ! EXPEDIENCY PAVES THE PATH TO FAILURE. These were His virtues, as we track Him on this path, from His sitting at the table to His expiring on Whether this principle had an exemplification in the cross.
And then, His victories. The Captive is the latter part of the career of John the Baptist, we the Conqueror, like the ark in the land of the leave our readers to judge. We can only say, Philistines. He put away sin and abolished death. the following considerations have led us to a conclu“ His be the Victor's name
sion which deeply impresses upon us the above Who fought our fight alone."
important lesson. God is here, God Himself and in the highest. He The Baptist's mission was twofold—to preach reenters the scene, as I may express it, when darkness pentance, in preparation for the appearing of the covers all the land. That was His acceptance of the Messiah, and to point out the August One when He offer of the Lamb, who said, “Lo, I come." And had appeared. God's chosen people, sunk in sin, essuch offer being accepted, God could show no mercy: pecially formalism (or a mere outward seeming to be If Jesus made Himself sin for us, it is unrelieved, godly), had to be roused, not to a belief in Christ's unmitigated judgment He must have to sustain. The coming, but to the need of being spiritually prepared darkness was the expression of this; God was accept- for His searching presence.
" That He should be ing the offer, and dealing with the Victim accordingly, “made manifest unto Israel, therefore am I come, abating nothing of the demands of righteousness. said John, “baptizing with water."
And then, when the offer has been fulfilled, and the Suddenly, therefore, a voice-a loud, urgent, sacrifice rendered, and Jesus has given up His life, piercing voice, is heard in the wilderness of Judæa, when the blood of the Victim has flowed, and all is – Repent! Repent! He cometh ! behold, He cometh! finished, God, by another figure, owns the accomplish. But though John began preaching in the wilderness ment of every thing, the fulness of the atonement, of Judæa, (which extended along the shores of the and the perfection of the reconciliation. The veil of Dead Sea,) and though he produced a deep and wide the temple is rent from the top to the bottom. He impression, he did not begin to baptize till he that sits on the throne, that judges right, and weighs had travelled up to and crossed over the Jordan. all claims and their answers, sin and its judgment,
“ Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judæa, and all peace and its price and its purchase, gives out that the region round about Jordan, and were baptized of him in wondrous witness of the deep, ineffable satisfaction Jordan, confessing their sins." He took in the deed that was then perfected “in the There was deep significance in John's thus bapplace that is called Calvary."
tizing in the Jordan, which means, the River of What a part for the blessed God Himself to take in Death or Judgment. His mission was, as we have this great crisis, this greatest of all solemnities, when seen, to convict of sin, to lead to repentance and to every thing was taking its place for eternity! And further still. Angels are here also, and of sin, death had passed upon all ;" that is, all
administer the baptism of repentance. Now, because heaven, earth, and hell, sin also and death, yea, and mankind had been baptized into death because of sin. the world too.
Baptism in the Jordan was a confession of the deserts Angels are here, witnessing these things, and learn- of sin-Death. Confession of sin and Repentance ing new wonders. Christ is seen of them.
are not, and cannot be, Salvation, or deliverance from Heaven, earth, and hell are here, waiting on this Death, though they may lead to it, or prepare the moment; rocks and graves, the earthquake, and the way for the Coming One-the Saviour. Confession darkness of the sky, bespeaking this.
of sin and Repentance could not, therefore, take Sin and death are disposed of, set aside and over- further than the “River of Death.” This was the thrown; the rent veil and the empty sepulchre pub- true character of John's ministry. The Jordan, therelishing these mysteries.
fore, with its wilderness banks, was, it would seem, The world learns its judgment in the sealed stone the Baptist's place—and nowhere else. being rolled away, and the keepers of it forced to take
What led John to leave the Jordan is not stated; the sentence of death in themselves.
and we therefore acknowledge that to speak dogmati
cally on this branch of our subject would be wrong. EXPEDIENCY, how much better to have and to sway Whatever the motive, the act was clearly a failure.
large and applauding audiences ! how much more We cannot but think—"judge ye what we say that it was caused by thoughts of EXPEDIENCY !! Jordan! See, Herod is hearing him gladly! and
good will be done than by remaining out at the John ought to have kept to his post till told to re- he is doing many things through his preaching ! move by Him who had sent him there. Without
Ah, but shall a servant reason, when he has a seeking or awaiting that guidance, he seems to have simple command before him ? It was all very showy, yielded to the guidance of EXPEDIENCY. Deceitful but was John's work according to God's mind? Guide ! readiest tool of the Arch-Antagonist. We have seen that it was not; and what was its
John's baptism had not been received by the result? The reformed king becomes his murderer! higher and professedly religious classes. His dis- showing that his labour was mere surface-work—a ciples were dispersed, exposed to the influence of varnishing of a rotten thing. John's preaching of rethese disbelieving teachers, and engaging with them formation in luxurious cities, God knew would only in controversy. (See John iii. 25.) Hearers were lead the hypocrite to increased hypocrisy; but his becoming scarce. What should the zealous man of ministrations at the Jordan, to those who were God do? To remain there, was to spend his breath sincere enough to go out to him, might still have upon a contracted and still contracting audience. been of continuous and decided service. While, If hearers would not come to him, could he not go therefore, he is zealously labouring to improve, to them?
an irremediably bad thing, and, consequently laSatan might have led him through some such bouring for nought, what does his labour produce as course of reasoning, as he has many other servants regards himself? - Silence, in respect to testimony to of God, inducing them to leave clear spheres of duty Christ, neglect of the known duty of baptizing, and the for those to which they were not called-spheres loss of his head. Whereas his ministry had been more tempting, but in which their testimony has full of most precious testimony, we now read of him been marred, and they have positively hindered the
no longer as pointing to the Lamb of God, or Lord's work! Satan's object was to mar John's baptizing earnest repenting sinners and sending them testimony to Christ, and to induce him to take his to Jesus; anon, he who has been silenced by the eyes off the Son of God. And he succeeded; and
subtleties of Satan, is further silenced by the stroke what was the consequence ?---mistakes so grievous of the executioner. '“ To bear witness to The Light” that John has speedily to be set aside!
was emphatically John's work : to go into cities and In the first place, he leaves the Jordan, his only attempt to reform the wicked, was getting away, far proper place for baptizing, and goes to “ Ænon, from his SPECIAL DUTY and his SPECIAL PLACE. near to Salim." Expediency might have justified Moreover, it was setting up a ministry in antagothis step ; first, because " there was much water nism to that of the Lord Himself. While John's there," "and, secondly, because, while it furnished disciples are discussing questions of purification equal facilities for immersion, it was in a thickly with the Jews, the Lord is seeking to impress the peopled country.
truth that men “must be BORN AGAIN," that they But while Expediency seemed to approve of the must spiritually eat of Himself and drink of Himstep, look at its mistake. Ænon means Springs of self or they could have no life in them. Besides, the the Dore, * and is appropriately near Salim, Peace. attempt to improve the authorities then ruling God's These names indicate the wrongness of the ground people was practically admitting that Herod might, on to which the Baptist had got. This baptizing at if he were only good enough, divide the reins with
Springs of the Dove,” near to Peace,” was Christ! Thus the Forerunner got to be a Hinderer; trenching in a figure) on the precious prerogative and what was the consequence? He had to be set of Him who, as John himself declared, came to aside. This is evident from various passages, which baptize with the Holy Ghost, that blessed Spirit who show that Jesus, having traversed Judwa, is about to descended
into Galilee, where John was, but abode at Sychar Though the Baptist is thus acting in accordance until he heard that John was cast into prison, and with his own thoughts, he is nevertheless graciously then he went forth into the cities of Galilee. (Comhonoured by being permitted to give his most ex- pare John iii. 24 ; iv. 1, 46; Matt. iv. 14; Mark i. 14.) plicit and emphatic testimony concerning Jesus--but How gracious, then, of the Lord Jesus to testify of it was his last? (John iii.) and mingling in it we see a John that there was “none greater born of woman, premonition of himself being set aside—a commence- even while he was under a cloud of doubtfulness, and ment of that sad darkness of soul in which he doubted even though his failure had cost the Lord (speaking whether Jesus were “He that should come,” or after the manner of men) a living WITNESS. whether they were to look for another !
But the Baptist did not retrace his steps to the Beloved in the Lord, we have the same gracious place of duty; a wrong step taken ever increases our Master, but let us take heed how we listen to EXPEdanger of going further. And he whom prophecy DIENCY when his commands are in question. (as quoted by himself) declared was to be the Voice in obey only is to be safe. There is no safety in doing the Wilderness, we find in cities-crowded, corrupt | anything, for which we feel we have not clear cities; yea, in the court of a hypocrite! But, sijw, Scripture warrant. Are we in doubt ? let us seek * Gesenius,
guidance, and wait till we get it.
THE FOREGOING CONSIDERATIONS APPLIED TO MODERN
as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and
come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord,
Attempts at reformation, improvement, and social placed us and what has He given us to do? . Having And Satan has no objection to any amount of civili
progress are favourite pursuits with the world. saved us, He has placed us between the living and sation and institutions by which the old nature, sin. the dead-between his living, saving Self and a world under sentence of death.' Having enlightened wrecked, may be patched up: If the world will not us, He has sent us into a dark world to show Himself listen to our testimony, that the wrath of God abideth as the Light of the World. Having been sin-bitten over it, notwithstanding all its attempts at keeping and healed ourselves, our special duty is to point to the general taste, and
so forth, the fact remains that
down vice, doing away with poverty, and elevating Him who was lifted up, like the brazen serpent in the wilderness; to direct the sin-cursed to him the whole world “lieth in the Wicked One.” Conwho knew no sin, but was made sin for us, and en
sidering that to-morrow we may be out of the scene, dured the curse; to the Lamb that was slain, but is if the Lord come,—and that destruction will soon alive again, and liveth to die no more. " The words
afterwards come down upon it, -it is preposterous for which thou hast given me," said the Lord Jesus us to have fellowship with the world in its ways. Christ, “I have given them.” And what are they ?
Our place is therefore, like John's, out in the “God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten wilderness, spiritually speaking ; " come out, and be Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but separate, and touch not the unclean.” Not personally have everlasting life.”
apart, but spiritually apart; in the world, but not This is laid upon us among the Lord's last words on earth:
Satan will say, appealing to EXPEDIENCY, What is
the use of your stopping out there in the wilderness, “ Go ye into all the world; preach the Gospel to every raising your voice ? why not go among men, apcreature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; he
prove that which you find to be good, persuade them that believeth not shall be damned."
to be better, help them to make the best of this Side by side, in these passages, are seen condem- world, and they will be more likely to listen to your nation and salvation. Every soul is in one condition testimony, especially if you give them something to or the other. Clearly, therefore, our primary duty do. is to urge men to flee from the wrath to come-the Beloved, it is a subtle snare; how many do not wrath soon to come, inevitably to come. John the
way through it! Depend upon it, as sure Baptist spake of the fan being in the hands of God's as we find ourselves in fellowship with the world in Messiah, and that He would " throughly purge His any of its darling, self-elating projects, or preaching floor.” There is, therefore, a striking analogy reformation of the old nature, so surely shall we find between John's primary duty and ours.
ourselves, like John the Baptist, silenced in testimony Towards such as receive the truth in the love of it, for Christ. As certainly as Christians follow their another sphere of duty is opened up. But the duty own thoughts of EXPEDIENCY, and turn aside to try, of the evangelist is primary, in the order of time, as it is called, "to ameliorate the condition of society." and is (according to gift and opportunity) the duty of and “ elevate the masses,” by arrangements of man's all Christians; “Let him that heareth say, Come:" devising, so surely will their testimony be marred. and the Philippians are exhorted by Paul to hold Under such circumstances, they will find that bearing forth the word of life.”
witness to the truth will be found often unsuited to Not only is our duty of pointing to the blessed the occasion, and that “Christ or hell ?” would be an Lamb of God strikingly analogous to that of John unwarrantable intrusion upon such good, well-meanthe Baptist, but so is also our place. Twice in John ing associates !! xvii. does the Lord say of believers—“They are not
Christians all around us are striking hands with the of this world, even as I am not of this world.” And world in such things. We say it with great grief. why? Because the world, or human society, is under For instance, many Christians think that, by giving the rule of Satan: unwittingly the unregenerate obey evenings, more or less frequently, in union with his behests. He is the god of this world, and ruleth worldly men, to serve the Tezu perance movement, in the hearts of the children of disobedience. To they are indirectly furthering the Gospel.* Others, have fellowship with the world in any of its pet schemes, is for those who represent Christ on earth * We do not wish to cast a slur on the practice of abstaining to have fellowship with Belial!
from the ordinary use of alcoholic drinks. Timothy was evi
dently an abstainer from wine as a beverage, and was only “Be ye not nnequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what advised to “take a little wine" for his "stomach's sake" and his fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness ? and what often infirmities." So long as we have no infirmities of the kind communion hath light with darkness ? and what concord hath indicated, we cannot appropriate the advice. For many reasons Christ with Belial ? or what part hath he that believeth with we wish abstinence from these drinks as beverages were an infidel (unbeliever] ? and what agreement hath the temple general, and are glad to show by our personal practice that of God with idols ? for ye are the temple of the living God; abstinence is best. But as a Social Agitation, Christians cannot
in God's way.
THE SMITTEN ROCK.
preside at or take part in worldly amusements and water or the Rock, is named by Moses, Meribah, entertainments with the thought of impressing the and also Massah (Temptation.) Thus the place people with the interest taken in their general wel- of the Rock, when first presented to faith, is fare. Other instances will occur to our readers. called “Temptation” and “Contention.” After
Let such Christians remember that the Word of wards, the waters are called “Contention" also. God declares this friendship with the world is spiri- Truth becomes contention when we do not receive it tual adultery: read what the Spirit says by James. “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the
This helps to an understanding of what the Holy friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever, there- Spirit designs to teach us in recording these wonderfore, will be a friend of the world is an enemy of God.” ful incidents of Israel's journeys in the wilderness.
" Indirect furthering" is a process undiscoverable In 1 Cor. x. we are told that those who came out in Scripture. By such subtle Expediency has Satan of Egypt were all baptized to Moses in the cloud turned those who might give true testimony into— and in the sea; and did all eat the same spiritual “ dumb dogs which cannot bark.” Oh, brethren meat, and did all drink the same spiritual drink; beloved, be “not ignorant of his devices;" be not and if we would profitably follow the course of their gagged by our wily Adversary. There is no safeguard wanderings as narrated in the Scriptures, we, too, in reasoning; therefore, do not begin to do that. must eat and drink spiritual food. The Rock, then, Your Lord says—"Abide in Me, and let my words is Christ. When smitten by command of the Lord, abide in you.'.
Let us, therefore, go nowhere, do no he is presented to us in Horeb (All Alone, or Forthing, in which we cannot realize his presence and saken); and God stood before the Smiter there, upon scatter his words, urging men to accept Himself, the Rock. Christ was thus smitten indeed. The declaring that unless they spiritually eat his flesh and place where he suffered, is well named Massah and drink his blood, there is no life in them.
Meribah (Temptation and Contention). Yet, notwithstanding, the waters of life flowed out, and his people drink of his lifegiving streams of truth. The Rock
was to be smitten, and the results were all in pure and " They drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them : and perfect grace. The Israelites murmured, contended, that Rock was Christ.” (1 Cor. x. 4).
and tempted, in Rephidim, and there was no word We proceed to answer an enquiry printed in our
of judgment for them ; God endured it all, and suplast number, page 86.
But afterwards, when THE We are taught that the plied all their needs! Smitten Rock was a type of Christ. Therefore, there Rock has to be dealt with in Kadesh (Holiness or could be but One Rock smitten by God's appoint- which God had said,
Sanctification), it is not seen from the place in
“ Take thy rod and smite.” It “ The Lord said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and for that Rock (in type) was Christ. In the place of
was enough that The Rock should be smitten once, take with thee of the elders of Israel ; and thy rod" wlierewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand and go. Behold, I holiness or sanctification (Kadesh) the command to will stand before thee upon The Rock in Horeb ; and thou Moses was, “ Speak ye unto the Rock.” Alas! Moses shalt smite The Rock, and there shall come water out of it, that transgressed the word of the Lord. the people may drink.” (Exod. xvii. 5-6.)
“Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before In Numbers xx., the word is,
The Rock, and he said unto them, Hear, now, ye rebels ; must * Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou,
we fetch you water out of this Rock ? And Moses lifted up his and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto tue Rock before hand, and with his rod he smote the Rock twice: and the water their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their forth to them water out of Me Rock," &c.
beasts also.” Observe, the definite article, the, is always used.
Yes, grace flowed out, in spite of the irreverent This is confirmed in all passages of holy writ, where act.
But God will mark his sense of disobedience reference is made to the Smitten Rock. So that, through lack of faith. though this latter event took place in Kadesh
“And the Lord spoke unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye and the former in Horeb, we have a conviction believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the Children of that there were at the two places two different peaks land which I have given them.” (Num. xx. 12.)
Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the of the same rock or mountain chain, and reference to the map confirms this impression. The Rock received no name. But the waters which
TO CORRESPONDENTS. flowed out are, on the second occasion, called Meribah (meaning Contention): Elsewhere, they are called letter
. We must, however, ask you to look again at our
W. B. S., LONDON.-Many thanks for your very gracious 1. The waters of strife in Kadesh.” (Ezek. xlviii. 28.)
Scripture reference. You tell us that in quoting Eph. In the narrative given in Exodus, the place, not the i. 12, 13, wo “ Confound two very different things, viz.
Faith the gift of God, and the gift, or sealing, of the Holy take part in that or any other movement. The confusion of Spirit.” We now append that Scripture ; let the Word of thought and the self-righteousness, which the unholy alliance God speak. “ That we should be to the praise of his glory, of the Church and the World has produced, are shocking, and who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, are patent to any Scripturally-taught Christian on the face of after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your most Temperance publications.
salvation : in whom also after that ye believed, ye were