Friday, 4 July 2008

Baptism and Emptiness

Baptism is the sacrament of hypostatic union, or the hope of it. That is,

· We are brought face to face with our inability to save ourselves (we receive in baptism what by nature we cannot receive)

· But remain manifestly human afterwards

· Living now in direct relationship with Christ,

· And receive the Spirit of Jesus to be his disciples


Whatever else we might want to say about baptism, it is the rite where we are brought face to face with our own need and God’s desire to fill that need through Jesus Christ: God responds to our failure and emptiness with the grace of Jesus Christ by filling our emptiness with the Holy Spirit. Baptism is the rite that celebrates the iconic identity between Christ and us whereby we become icons of Christ himself, yet in this iconic likeness we are nothing more than who we were uniquely always meant to be. Baptism is the sacrament of our becoming fully human and proleptically announces the crowning of our humanity through union with God in Christ and his Spirit. This is why we were created, and why God became Incarnate in Jesus and gave the Spirit into our hearts: we are an emptiness filled by God, but in being filled by God's Spirit we become who we are meant to be in utter freedom.


3 comments:

stephen clark said...

This a very good point. The Creed of St Athanasius for example (as I have noted I think on this blog before) talks of how humanity is drawn into the Godhead, not by the dragging down of the Godhead but by the taking up of the humanity..
One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking of that manhood into God

Warren Huffa said...

Beautiful stuff indeed.

Stephen James Bloor said...

I like this. It isn't how I would word it but i like it. I would want to talk more about us through baptism being bound to Jesus, whom himself was baptisted alongside the "sinner", that together this Sacrament we are bound and made one. So that then in Christ's actions upon the Cross we too are there and so through baptism we are put to death with Christ to be raised in Christ upon his return.