Thursday, 10 September 2009

Sacraments: Infant Communion and Baptism

Been thinking recently...

What if 'communion' and 'baptism' were not the only 'officiated' sacraments?

This is of course related to the definition of sacraments... which I think should mean "God's revelation to us". Actually, that would make everything God's sacrament.

This takes me to the bow in the heavens as one of many sacraments, and the feast of meat after the global flood. What are both but pictures of baptism, the Christ-ark through the waters of renewal; and communion, where we must feast on the meat of Christ?

But then this made me think more about what then of the contemporary debates on baptism and communion (i.e. believers' baptism/communion and infant baptism/communion? My guess is this...
  • Though the picture of baptism and communion, as continuations of circumcision and passover, are clear in its portrayal of the circumcision by the Spirit and the feast on Christ's flesh and covering of his blood...
  • The true baptism happened long before we were even infants. In fact, true baptism was occurring when we were in the watery sack of the mother's womb!
  • So when the goes from darkness to light, from the womb to the new world, he/she is covered in both blood and water. There, the baby has already been baptised - the sacrament of child-birth has already portrayed the true meaning of infant baptism; or should I say pre-natal baptism?
  • And communion is immediately enjoyed upon feeding on the milk of the mother, a taste of new creation, though one day he must feed on the meat of Christ; just as the Israelites have been drinking milk but after Christ incarnate the entire world is feeding on His flesh. The object of faith has always been the same, though progressively revealed from Israel to the World.
Now if that is roughly an accurate thinking of sacramental theology, then long before we even knew Christ, we were already receiving the first communion and first baptism. Then, the human instituted baptism and communion are but testimonies of other sacraments which say the same thing - that, essentially, God loved us in Christ Jesus long before we even knew the Name of God. To illustrate - that crying, smelly, dirty, blood/water-covered, hungry baby is the object of God's love. If that is true sacrament, then for crying out loud, take your communion and get baptised right away: not to show how faithful you are, but how faithful He is as you stand before Him as that very infant.


yemsee said...

absolutely - everything that has been created and said by the Holy Spirit is sacrament - i.e. hidden so that it may be revealed in Christ (by the church)

we are all baptised in the flesh already (ref Acts 2 quoting Joel)... that's why i'm a definitely pro-infant baptism

Nicolai said...

Hi Dev,

if you associate "natural baptism" with childbirth, then that actually makes a point for associating the sacrament of baptism with being born again, so that people would be baptised at their 2nd birth, not as infants after the first birth. (Though I myself am still pro-infant-baptism)

Not quite sure how the blood fits in baptism. Now 1 John 5:6 says that Jesus "came by water and blood". But does that link to His incarnation (1 John 4:2), or His death (John 19:34)? Taking the latter option, you would almost say that Christ "baptised" the ground with water and blood in His death... Do you then think Christ gave some kind of birth to something/someone in that moment? I mean the seed has to die in order to bear fruit, but that's a few days later, not on the cross, right?
I'm confusing myself. Not sure this is sound theology, but I'll think about it. :)