The Orthodox teaching on Holy Baptism & Chrismation
Maybe the following will help to clarify Orthodox Baptism & Chrismation in a nutshell:
The way of entry into the Christian Church is by Baptism in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). Baptism as a word means immersion or submersion in water. It was practiced in the Old Testament and even in some pagan religions as the sign of death and re-birth. Thus, John the Baptist was baptizing as the sign of new life and repentance which means literally a change of mind, and so of desires and actions in preparation of the coming of the Kingdom of God in Christ. In the Church, the meaning of Baptism is death and rebirth in Christ. It is the personal experience of Easter given to each man, the real possibility to die and to be "born anew" (John 3:3).
Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by Baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his(Romans 6:3-5; cf. Colossians 2:12; 3:1).
The Baptismal experience is the fundamental Christian experience, the primary condition for the whole of Christian life. Everything in the Church has its origin and context in Baptism for everything in the Church originates and lives by the resurrection of Christ. Thus, following Baptism comes the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit, the mystery (sacrament) of Chrismation which is mans personal experience of Pentecost. And the completion and fulfillment of these fundamental Christian mysteries comes in the mystery of Holy Communion with God in the Divine Liturgy of the Church.
Mar Melchizedek----- Original Message -----From: Eugene KaplanSent: Sunday, May 27, 2001 11:38Subject: [SORForum] BaptismShlomo,Only those who have priesthood can give the sacrament of baptism. One cannot give what one does not have authority to. Further, it is not enough to be baptized in the name of Jesus. We see this clearly in the Acts: "But when they believed Philip (who was ordained as deacon by Apostles) as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done. Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus." (Acts 8:12-16).
If the baptism in the name of Jesus Christ (which the people of Samaria had accepted already) is enough, why did the apostles have to send them Peter and John in order that they may receive the Holy Spirit? What we understand here is that because Philip was a deacon (and had no priesthood) his baptism was not acceptable by the apostles. Philip baptized, as John used to, by water only but without the Holy Spirit.
The Syrian Orthodox Church gives the Chrism (Confirmation) to those baptized by non-apostolic Churches, because she believes that they have not received the Holy Spirit yet.
C. Eugene Kaplan
--- In SOR-Forum@y..., mor_efraim@y... wrote:
>I would like to know on Protestant Baptism, one say have to rebaptism again, why? Is there any books/diciplines from the Apostles on it?
"Let every man be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger."
Syriac Orthodox Resources: http://sor.cua.edu
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