We praise the Lord that He has blessed us so, and we praise God that our families have a high regard for the Scripture's command to be "fruitful and multiply."
All this is to say that Providence Church, unlike many other churches today, won't be dying out anytime soon.
But there is another reason why this picture noteworthy. It displays something of our church's unity. These families came forward on Sunday for a child dedication. They took vows to raise their children in the fear and admonition of the Lord, and Matt (who is at the pulpit) closed this part of the service by praying for them.
What's the big deal? It is this: Matt is believes Scripture teaches paedo-baptism. In other words, Matt is supporting these families despite their difference of opinion on the matter of when baptism should be applied--just like the other elders (and credo-baptist congregants) support his family (and other paedo's in the congregation) in so far as they can when it comes to the baptism of an infant or covenant child.
In other words, there is a difference of opinion on this matter, and we have to deal with it. At Providence we seek to love and accept each other in the Lord despite our quibble over water's application.
Baptism, while an important issue, isn't a fundamental issue. For at least 500 years the church has been divided upon it and good Christian men have disagreed. Fortunately, it doesn't have to be a strident division. We at Providence have sought to demonstrate that the sign of our unity (the sacrament of baptism, which signifies our union with Christ and each other) does not have to be an issue that actually breaks our unity.
These two dynamics of our church home here in Ashland are just some of what makes Providence such a great place to worship.