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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32592

Title: By One Spirit into One Body: Toward an Anabaptist Theology of Baptism and Ecclesial Mediation
Authors: Anthony, Siegrist
Advisor: Mangina, Joseph
Department: Theology
Keywords: baptism
Anabaptism
ecumenism
ecclesiology
sacraments
Mennonite
Issue Date: 26-Jul-2012
Abstract: The working Anabaptist theology of baptism suffers from a deficient account of divine action, especially as mediated through the church. The goal of this dissertation is to develop resources to remedy this weakness by drawing on elements of the sacramental theology and ecclesiology from the broader, mostly Protestant, tradition. The fact that communities professing to practice believers’ baptism actually baptize children is an important point of departure for this project. This aberration signals underlying confusion about the nature of the church and the relationship of the human and divine actions that form it. A construal of baptism that does not reduce it to rationalist testimony, abstract spiritualism, or the sum of its sociological parts is needed. Such an account can be developed by attending to the ways in which the church embodies the ongoing presence of Christ in the world and exists as a community accompanied by the Spirit through time. In line with this sacramental trajectory believers’ baptism can be understood as a participating witness. This ecclesial practice is a witness to God’s redemptive work, and as an act of God performed by the church it participates in the gospel’s ongoing effectiveness. The dissertation concludes by describing how baptism understood in this way might be performed; a model is suggested that could strengthen Anabaptist communities by renewing this historically central practice.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32592
Appears in Collections:Wycliffe College - Doctoral Theses

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