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Author Topic: Baptism  (Read 1399 times) Average Rating: 0
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fennik
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« on: April 20, 2005, 04:14:29 AM »

 "He who believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned." - Jesus

So you do have to be baptized to be saved, and alot of people say you dont have to be baptised to be saved, Jesus said it, it must be done.
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lpap
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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2005, 09:40:59 AM »

"He who believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned." - Jesus

So you do have to be baptized to be saved, and alot of people say you dont have to be baptised to be saved, Jesus said it, it must be done.


Bible says: "...but he who does not believe will be condemned", not that "he who does not be baptized will be condemned"

There is a huge difference. To "not be baptized" is not the same as "not to believe".

Judgement Day will  have many surprises.
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fennik
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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2005, 01:27:00 PM »

Well baptism is a step up in faith, an action to show you are with Jesus and your faith is real? That's kinda messed up what you just posted, Jesus knew if he should have said, "must be baptized or will be lost" Why didn't the Lord? Who knows...It's a good idea to get baptized tho.
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lpap
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2005, 01:58:27 PM »

Saint Gregory of Nyssa has given a sermon with the title "On the Baptism of Christ"

We can find answers regarding Baptism there.

Here folllows a passage from this sermon, for your delight:
 
"...Therefore, also, it is that after the dignity of adoption the devil plots more vehemently against us, pining away with envious glance, when he beholds the beauty of the new-born man, earnestly tending towards that heavenly city, from which he fell: and he raises up against us fiery temptations, seeking earnestly to despoil us of that second adornment, as he did of our former array. But when we are aware of his attacks, we ought to repeat to ourselves the apostolic words, “As many of us as were baptized into Christ were baptized into His death" (1) . Now if we have been conformed to His death, sin henceforth in us is surely a corpse, pierced through by the javelin of Baptism, as that fornicator was thrust through by the zealous Phinehas (2). Flee therefore from us, ill-omened one! for it is a corpse thou seekest to despoil, one long ago joined to thee, one who long since lost his senses for pleasures. A corpse is not enamoured of bodies, a corpse is not captivated by wealth, a corpse slanders not, a corpse lies not, snatches not at what is not its own, reviles not those who encounter it. My way of living is regulated for another life: I have learnt to despise the things that are in the world, to pass by the things of earth, to hasten to the things of heaven, even as Paul expressly testifies, that the world is crucified to him, and he to the world (3). These are the words of a soul truly regenerated: these are the utterances of the newly-baptized man, who remembers his own profession, which he made to God when the sacrament was administered to him, promising that he would despise for the sake of love towards Him all torment and all pleasure alike...."

(1) Rom. 6:3 "Or are ye ignorant that all we who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?
(2) Num. 25: 7-8 "And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from the midst of the congregation, and took a spear in his hand; and he went after the man of Israel into the pavilion, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her body. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel."
(3) Gal. 6: 14 "But far be it from me to glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world hath been crucified unto me, and I unto the world"
« Last Edit: April 20, 2005, 02:11:41 PM by lpap » Logged

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Michael
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2005, 03:23:10 PM »

Well baptism is a step up in faith, an action to show you are with Jesus and your faith is real? That's kinda messed up what you just posted, Jesus knew if he should have said, "must be baptized or will be lost" Why didn't the Lord? Who knows...It's a good idea to get baptized tho.

This seems to deny that Baptism is even a Sacrament.  It is not merely a 'good idea', as you claim.  It is not merely 'an action to show you are with Jesus'.

Baptism is the Sacrament that conveys the grace of Salvation - in it we are burid in Christ's death and share in his resurrection.  As with any of the Sacraments, it is a guaranteed channel of the grace of God.  Anything outside of this may well also convey God's grace, for God is at liberty to freely bestow his grace wheresoever and howsoever he so chooses, but that is for him to decide and not us.  Therefore, if a person chooses not to be baptised, but wishes to instead go on retreat and spend a week in prayer, God may decide to save the person's soul through this action, as well as He may not.  The point that I am making is, why introduce that risk when, in the Sacrament of Baptism, we have a guaranteed channel of that grace.

As for your claim that Jesus did not say that those who are not Baptised are lost, I would be interested to hear what you have to say about his words in S. John's Gospel:

Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews.  He came to Jesus by night and said to him, ‘Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.’  Jesus answered him, ‘Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.’  Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can anyone be born after having grown old?  Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?’  Jesus answered, ‘Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit.  What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. - John 3: 1-6 (my emphasis).

The Sacraments or Mysteries of the Church are more than merely 'good ideas'.
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lpap
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« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2005, 05:25:12 PM »

... As with any of the Sacraments, it is a guaranteed channel of the grace of God. ... The point that I am making is, why introduce that risk when, in the Sacrament of Baptism, we have a guaranteed channel of that grace....

Dear Michael,

You have used the word “guaranteed” in a strange way. Grace of God is not encapsulated in the Sacraments forced by their nature. Sacraments are sacred as long as the relations of faithful with God are honest and personal. There is not a mechanical way to get Grace. The Spirit blows as He likes. We nevertheless come to meet Him in a way that is not defined by our place and our time or by the form of our rite but is always regarded as a personal meeting. Both participants are free to present themselves in time and in the place they choose to do so.

There is not an automated “guaranteed” presentation of God in Sacraments. The “risk” really does exist because we meet with a Person. In Orthodox faith we do not talk about things that are given to us, but about our faith in Persons - Father, Son, Spirit. The Orthodox faith is not about Grace that God provides to us. Meeting with Grace is a Personal experience; it’s a meeting with the Holy Trinity.
So in Baptism, and in all other Sacraments we come to know - we meet with - we live the lives of - Trinity. The “guarantee” of Sacraments is given as long the involved persons (both human and Devine Ones) are truly and personally and freely coming to this meeting. It is an Orthodox experience that God first comes toward us and waits for our affirmative reply. In this respect even non baptized humans are getting a "guaranteed" invitation from God to relate with Him personally. What makes the “guarantee” to fall is only our negative response.

Christ says :
Revelation 3:20 “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me”.
John 10:7,9 “So Jesus said to them again, "Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. GǪI am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture”


Baptism and all Sacraments are not the means that we use in order to accomplish salvation as a guaranteed door that opens into Heaven.

Baptism and all Sacraments are the human way of saying yes to the invitation to meet with Him. They are actually events taking place in a "our time” and at "our place” inasmuch human realities are involved in them due to delimitations of the nature of human persons that participate in them, but they are at the same time events happening as Uncreated God’s Actions. There is nothing “guaranteed” about participation in God’s Actions because it all end up in whether we are having faith in the Invisible Devine Persons as humans.

Dear Michael,
I understand your saying and I agree with you in a way but I like to point that every time someone needs a “guarantee” for his love, he takes out “the freedom of Person” and he jails the loving persons in “guaranteed” pathetic actions motived from good intentions and mutual attraction.

To return back to your posting Baptism is not a "guaranteed" event. It is the meeting with Gofhead that is a Trinity Person we Love and we know of just by our faith.  
« Last Edit: April 20, 2005, 05:33:43 PM by lpap » Logged

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Michael
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« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2005, 02:35:35 AM »

Dear lpap,

Many thanks for your warm and informative reply, which has given me further insight into th Orthodox approach to these matters.  It seems very conversant with my own, which is very reassuring.

Of course I believe that there needs to be the desire for God on the part of the individual, who comes to God in the hope of forming a right relationship with him, within his holy Church.  By my use of the word guaranteed, I was not implying that the Sacraments are some sort of magical formulae, that work whether or not the recipient (for want of a better word) actually wants to receive them, or even believes in God.  By my use of the word guaranteed, I was saying that, with the right spirit, and the desire for a right relationship with God, somebody who approaches him in faith and with holy fear, can be guaranteed God's grace (or meeting with God's grace, as you expressed it in your reply to me) in Baptism, in a way that somebody who approaches in the same spirit but refuses Baptism cannot be guaranteed this grace.  God has given us his promise through the Sacraments/Mysteries, and so long as we approach him the the requisite faith and desire to be in a right relationship with God, his grace is there for us.  If we do not wish to receive these Sacraments, then that grace mya also be there, but we cannot know this in the way that we can with the Sacraments.

The reason that I did not add the proviso of the will and desire of the "recipient" in my earlier post is because, rather then trying to post an in-depth explanation of my understanding of the Sacraments, I was merely responding to fennik's post, which seemed to imply that the Sacraments/Mysteries are nice things to have, but are really just optional extras that we can quite happily do without. I'm sorry if my lack of clarity caused confusion. Smiley
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