Christian Apologists (Justin Martyr, Tertullian, and Origen) and early Heresies – by Dr. Ryan Reeves
For Gnosticism and Irenaeus:
“Three Threats, Three Apologists (Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Irenaeus) and three early church fathers” (Clement of Rome, Ignatius, Polycarp) – the 2nd & early 200s AD – early church by Bruce Gore
Tertullian, around 196-206 AD, gave one of the clearest early statements that a person needs to first understand and repent and believe before baptism (along with Justin Martyr earlier; died in 165 AD, see below); the earliest clear statement that seems to show that the earliest church history denies infant baptism as a practice.
James White gives several quotes from Tertullian that show he affirmed believer’s baptism (and not infant baptism), but I did not hear Dr. White quote this one: (Maybe I missed it.)
“Let them “come,” then, while they are growing up; let them “come” while they are learning, while they are learning whither to come; let them become Christians when they have become able to know Christ.”
Justin Martyr, First Apology, chapter 61:1
Chapter LXI.—Christian baptism.
“I will also relate the manner in which we dedicated ourselves to God when we had been made new through Christ; lest, if we omit this, we seem to be unfair in the explanation we are making. As many as are persuaded and believe that what we teach and say is true, and undertake to be able to live accordingly, are instructed to pray and to entreat God with fasting, for the remission of their sins that are past, we praying and fasting with them. Then they are brought by us where there is water, and are regenerated in the same manner in which we were ourselves regenerated. For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water. “
Justin Martyr, First Apology, 61:1. (he was martyred in 165 AD)