And there we have it!!
There are seven sacraments
There are three KINDS of sacraments
Sacraments of Initiation-Baptism, Confirmation, The Eucharist
Sacraments of Healing-Reconciliation, Anointing of the Sick
Sacraments of Service-Holy Orders, Matrimony
Paragraph 1212 says, “The sacraments of Christian initiation…lay the foundations of every Christian life.”
THIS IS REMARKABLE!!
Baptism is what brings us into a relationship with God and makes us into God’s very children
God ADOPTS us through Baptism
We are REGENERATED
We are FORGIVEN
We are BROUGHT INTO THE FAMILY OF GOD
In the Eucharist we are STRENGTHENED and given the very Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ
In Confirmation we are given the further outpouring of the Holy Spirit that Jesus poured out on the Apostles at Pentecost
This is the FOUNDATION of the Christian life
Paragraph 1212 continues, “‘The sharing in the divine nature given to men through the grace of Christ bears a certain likeness to the origin, development, and nourishing of natural life….’”
When we are Baptized we are allowed to share in the very Divine Nature of God Himself
Here are three terms that are used as names for Baptism
THE WASHING OF REGENERATION AND RENEWAL BY THE HOLY SPIRIT
Baptism means to plunge, immerse, and wash
Originally you would be FULLY SUBMERGED
Many Catholic Christians continue to be baptized this way
But what if there isn’t enough water?
Now you can pour water on someone’s head in order to effect the Sacrament of Baptism
The fullest image of what is happening at Baptism is to be submerged because we are DYING IN CHRIST and we are BROUGHT TO LIFE IN CHRIST AGAIN
Why is it called “the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit”?
Because it brings about a NEW BIRTH and makes us into a NEW CREATURE
Why is it called “enlightenment”?
All the sacraments are accompanied by the Word of God PROCLAIMED
So the Word of God is the Word that ENLIGHTENS EVERY PERSON
The person Baptized has now been ENLIGHTENED
They are now a son or daughter of light
St. Justin Martyr says in Paragraph 1216, “...indeed, he becomes ‘light’ himself…”
St. Gregory of Nazianzus has all these different words to describe Baptism
Go back and reread why he says those things in Paragraph 1216 because I am not going to list them all here!!
But here is one I will write…
St. Gregory of Nazianzus says in Paragraph 1216, “It is called gift because it is conferred on those who bring nothing of their own…”
WHICH IS COMPLETELY TRUE!!
This is one of the reasons we know we can Baptize infants
Because they bring NOTHING on their own
It is COMPLETE GRACE
Paragraph 1216 continues, “...grace since it is given even to the guilty…”
Why do we call it all these things?
St. Gregory of Nazianzus tells us exactly why in Paragraph 1216 so go and read it all again
Remember how we talked about how God reveals Himself in nature
Then He slowly reveals Himself in the Old Covenant to Abraham, Moses, and the People of God
BAPTISM IN THE ECONOMY OF SALVATION
This means God is slowly revealing all of the ways from the very beginning that He used WATER in powerful ways
Paragraph 1218 says, “Since the beginning of the world, water, so humble and wonderful a creature, has been the source of life and fruitfulness…”
God is the Creator
God created water
Therefore water is a CREATURE
THERE IT IS!!
Paragraph 1217 says, “O God…who in many ways have prepared water, your creation, to show forth the grace of Baptism…”
Because water is the thing that GIVES LIFE
Paragraph 1220 and 1221 also show that water is a SYMBOL OF DEATH
In a spring water is a SYMBOL OF LIFE
In an oasis water is a SYMBOL OF LIFE
In the SEA…(SQUIRREL!! 😉)
Now Fr. Mike is talking about Moana…
But the sea isn’t deadly to Ariel 🤔 😜
So the Sea you die
Here is the combining of the imagery of water as the source of life and death
How does it come together?
It comes together in Jesus
Because we are Baptized into Christ’s Death
At Baptism, we are given Christ’s life
Water has been prefigured in so many ways in the Old Covenant and in life all around us
God uses water in saving the People of God
Noah and his family through the ark
The Crossing of the Red Sea
God frees Israel from slavery and gives them new life
Ultimately they cross the Jordan River and enter the Promised Land
These are all HINTS at the ways in which God is going to use WATER
God fulfills this in Baptism
Noah’s Ark is THE CHURCH that brings the person through the chaos of life to NEW LIFE
The Red Sea has the Lord God leading the people from SLAVERY AND DEATH to LIBERATION AND LIFE
Crossing the Jordan River when God leads them from wandering the wilderness to the PROMISED LAND is a symbol and sign of ETERNAL LIFE IN HEAVEN
THIS IS WHAT BAPTISM DOES TO US!!
Tomorrow we will read about how Christ’s Baptism fulfills ALL OF THE OTHER HINTS, FORESHADOWINGS, TYPES IN THE OLD COVENANT…
Now we have Baptism in the Church
We get to experience this because of God’s Grace
It is worth PRAISING THE LORD for the fact that He has sent out His Holy Spirit so that we can participate in this incredible life that Jesus Christ has won for us
There will be some technical things but there will also be some beautiful things
Maybe you are Baptized and have received all of the Sacraments that you can possibly received
YOU HAVE NOT REALIZED THE GIFT YOU HAVE BEEN GIVEN!!
The next few weeks will be INCREDIBLE
Because we will realize that these are all of the gifts that God has poured out upon us and we get to give God thanks
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!