Tuesday, May 28, 2019


Alan Streett gets this right.

I am convinced that most churches incorrectly define the term sacrament. In the first century a sacrament (Latin, sacramentum) was a common term that described a soldier’s pledge or oath to serve Caesar as Lord. It was his promise of fidelity to the emperor and empire. The early Christians adopted the word for use and applied it to baptism. At baptism believers pledged their allegiance to Jesus as Lord and promised to forsake all other lords.

Jerome (ca 345–430 CE) was the first to redefine sacrament as a mystical event in which God imparts grace to the believer.

While some Christian communities view baptism as a vehicle for transmitting salvific grace and others view it only as a symbolic act or ordinance, I believe both views fall short of the mark. Baptism in NT times was a person’s public sacramentum or vow of commitment in sight of witnesses to serve Christ regardless of cost. In this sense baptism was a status-changing ritual.

Faith is allegiance to a different Rescuer and Political Leader.

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