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Posted by Glenn Davies, 30 Mar 2017

Glenn Davies looks at the Anglican doctrine of baptism in the 39 Articles.

XXVII — OF BAPTISM
Baptism is not only a sign of profession, and mark of difference, whereby Christian men are discerned from others that be not christened, but it is also a sign of Regeneration or new Birth, whereby, as by an instrument, they that receive Baptism rightly are grafted into the Church; the promises of the forgiveness of sin, and of our adoption to be the sons of God by the Holy Ghost, are visibly signed and sealed; Faith is confirmed, and Grace increased by virtue of prayer unto God. The Baptism of young Children is in any wise to be retained in the Church, as most agreeable with the institution of Christ.

The last recorded words of our Lord in Matthew’s Gospel were to his eleven disciples to go and make other disciples, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that Jesus had commanded (Matthew 28:19-20). The background to this command was the making and baptising of disciples that was part of Jesus’ earthly ministry, as it had been part of John’s (John 4:1-2). The combination of making disciples and the use of water baptism as a ‘seal’ or ‘mark’ of discipleship is striking.

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Posted by Mark Burkill, 29 Mar 2017

Mark Burkill unpacks the teaching of the 39 Articles on church purity and church discipline.

XXVI — OF THE UNWORTHINESS OF THE MINISTERS, WHICH HINDERS NOT THE EFFECT OF THE SACRAMENT
Although in the visible Church the evil be ever mingled with the good, and sometimes the evil have chief authority in the Ministration of the Word and Sacraments, yet forasmuch as they do not the same in their own name, but in Christ’s, and do minister by his commission and authority, we may use their Ministry, both in hearing the Word of God, and in receiving of the Sacraments. Neither is the effect of Christ’s ordinance taken away by their wickedness, nor the grace of God’s gifts diminished from such as by faith and rightly do receive the Sacraments ministered unto them; which be effectual, because of Christ’s institution and promise, although they be ministered by evil men.

Nevertheless, it appertaineth to the discipline of the Church, that inquiry be made of evil Ministers, and that they be accused by those that have knowledge of their offences; and finally being found guilty, by just judgement be deposed.

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Posted by Lee Gatiss, 29 Mar 2017

This week's readings proclaim to us the glorious new life of the Spirit that is ours in Christ through his powerful word. Lee Gatiss expounds the lectionary readings for this Sunday.

The readings for the 5th Sunday of Lent (Year A) are Ezekiel 37:1-14, Romans 8:6-11, and John 11:1-45. In this short video, Lee Gatiss expounds those readings for us today.

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