Ask an Anglican: What the Sacraments are For

Scripture on Baptism:

Matthew 28:16-20
Mark 16:14-16
John 3:1-21
Romans 6
Titus 3:4-7
1 Peter 3:17-22 (noting especially verse 21)

Additionally, there are a number of places in Acts where we see entire households, including infants, being baptized – Acts 2:39, 16:14-15, and 18:8, for example.

Scripture on the Eucharist:

1 Corinthians 11:20-34
John 6:22-71
Matthew 26:26-28
Mark 14:22-24
Luke 22:19-20
Luke 24:13-35 (noting especially verse 30)
Revelation 19:9

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About Fr. Jonathan

Your average traditional crunchy Christ follower with a penchant for pop culture, politics, and puns.
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7 Responses to Ask an Anglican: What the Sacraments are For

  1. Ann says:

    My question is addressing both this video, and the post you recently made re: baptism and election. It seems to me that as Christians, we are still to work towards some form of sanctification. How does sanctification work with this understanding? Does the grace we freely receive from God, and the faith that we freely receive from that grace, allow us to work towards sanctification?

    • Fr. Jonathan says:

      Great question, Ann. And one that deserves a fuller answer than in the comments box. If you don’t mind, I’ll put it in the queue for a future post.

      • Ann says:


        The “passive recipients of God’s grace” thing just makes me feel a little bit nervous, because how in the world do we hold this in tension with passages regarding perseverance, and “working out our salvation with fear and trembling”?

  2. Pingback: Thursday’s Round-up: Paul the Mystic, Anglican Sacraments, and the Spiritual Crisis at Seminary « The Writers' Block

  3. Brian says:

    Late to discussion but hoping to participate … with a little perspective as an Anglican former Baptist what has also attended and belonged to Presbyterian, Brethren, and Methodist churches.

    I REALLY understand where Pete is coming from. Briefly: Let me swap two words from his closing comment, which is a great observation – and works both ways: “I am not sure that the percentage of devout [Baptists] is any larger than the percentage of devout [Anglicans].”

    I accept Anglican formulation because it is derived from the authority of Scripture taught over the centuries through the Church’s historic leadership (Apostolic succession, notably to include the early Councils which clarified so much essential Christian belief and practice held in common by Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, and other Protestant groups).

    As Pete observes, evangelicalism is highly fragmented, and as many congregations pursue “relevance”, they are spinning off into their own unique and “relevant” directions – sometimes with careless regard for tradition, reason, and – gasp – Scripture.

    As to the sacraments, we left our prior evangelical church when communion was moved from Sunday to Tuesday night (in a transparent attempt to boost the meager attendance at mid-week prayer) – and it became literally self-serve, at two stations on either side of the platform, with the bread and juice pre-placed. Sadly there were no words of institution and absolutely no communal, much less sacramental, quality to the service at all. For me, this would have been eating and drinking of the body and blood of our Lord in an unworthy manner. It took us a full year to find an Anglican (Episcopal) church where we once again were able to feed on the Word.

    Not sure if permissible or how achieved but would be happy to discuss further with Pete via email.

    • Brian says:

      Chuckling at my own typo … last I checked I am a “who” not a “what”. :)

    • Fr. Jonathan says:

      Great observations, Brian. Thanks for sharing them. I agree with you that what you describe really would be eating and drinking in an unworthy manner, although minus the words of institution it would be difficult to say that what was received is even symbolic of the Body and Blood of the Lord.

      I can’t give out email addresses, but perhaps if Pete reads this he can reply.

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