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On Denying Baptism

Ben posts some characteristically helpful comments on the relation between baptism and ordination:

Since baptism is itself vocation to discipleship, ordination — or preparation for ordination — can often become a denial of baptism.

  • If you want to be ordained in order to become a really serious and committed disciple of Christ, then you have denied your baptism.
  • If you want to be ordained in order to progress beyond ordinary discipleship, then you have denied your baptism.
  • If you want to be ordained in order to “serve the Lord full-time”, then you have denied your baptism.

For more on this, see the work of William Stringfellow.

2 Comments

  1. Sarah wrote:

    I don’t really understand what you mean. Of what kind of ordination do you speak? Do you refer to some general concept of ordination? Do you mean the sacrament or mystery of ordination (the one that is complex and in the theological tradition of the Church)?

    Saturday, October 3, 2009 at 12:34 am | Permalink
  2. Chris Donato wrote:

    My guess is that given Halden’s Anabaptistic and thus leveling sensibilities, he/Ben/Stringfellow intends to take aim at the latter?

    Nonetheless, I don’t disagree with these posted sentiments, with qualification of course (that qualification being that committing those mistakes above don’t really create an apostate). Maybe the ordinary is boring for Stringfellow, et al., but what actually denies one’s baptism and thus creates apostasy is, as Saint Paul puts it, to become once again enslaved to sin (cf. Rom 6).

    Saturday, October 3, 2009 at 4:23 am | Permalink

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