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dismisses it; thus, too, the Holy Spirit. But do not marvel that we are baptized in one name, that is, 'in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,' because He said one name, in which is one substance, one divinity, one majesty. This is the name of which it is said: “Whereby we must be saved.'In this name you all have been saved; you have returned to the grace of life.

(23) So the Apostle exclaims, as you heard in the reading of the Gospel today, that whoever is baptized is baptized in the death of Jesus. What is 'in the death'? That, just as Christ died, so you also taste of death; just as Christ died to sin and lives unto God, so you, too, died to the former allurements of sins through the sacrament of baptism and rose again through the grace of Christ. So death is, but not in the reality of corporal death but in likeness. For when you dip, you take on the likeness of death and burial, you receive the sacrament of that cross, because Christ hung on the cross and His body was transfixed with nails. You then are crucified with Him;? you cling to Christ, you cling to the nails of our Lord Jesus Christ, lest the Devil be able to take you from Him. Let the nail of Christ hold you, whom the weakness of human condition recalls.

(24) So you dipped; you came to the priest. What did he say to you? He said: 'God the Father Almighty, who regenerated you by water and the Holy Spirit and forgave you your sins, Himself will anoint you unto life everlasting.' See, unto what you were anointed, he said: 'Unto life everlasting.' Do not prefer this life to that life. For example, if some enemy rises

3 Cf. Matt. 28.19. 4 Cf. Acts 4.12. 5 Cf. Rom. 6.3. 6 Cf. Rom. 6.10.

up, if he wishes to take away your faith, if he threatens death, that someone may prevaricate, beware what you choose. Do not choose that in which you are not anointed, but choose that in which you are anointed, so that you prefer eternal life to temporal life.


Chapter 1

(1) Yesterday we discussed the font, whose likeness is as a kind of sepulchre into which, believing in the Father and Son and Holy Spirit, we are received and dipped and rise, that is, are resuscitated. Moreover, you receive myrrh, that is, ointment upon the head. Why upon the head? Because 'the eyes of a wise man are in his head, Solomon says.? For wisdom without grace grows cold, but when wisdom has received grace, then its work begins to be perfect. This is called regeneration.

(2) What is regeneration? You have it in the Acts of the Apostles, for that line which is mentioned in the second psalm, 'Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee,' seems to refer to the resurrection. For the holy Apostle Peter


1 Eccle. 2.14. 2 Acts 13.33. 3 Ps. 2.7. 4 A lapse of memory because of the similarity of Paul's prayer (Acts

13.15-41) and Peter's prayer (Acts 2.14-36).

in the Acts of the Apostles thus interpreted, that at that time, when the Son rose from the dead, the voice of the Father resounded: ‘Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.' Therefore, He is also called 'the first-born from the dead.'5 So, what is resurrection other than we rise from death unto life? Thus, then, even in baptism, since it is a likeness of death, undoubtedly, when you dip and rise again, it becomes a likeness of resurrection. Thus, according to the interpretation of the Apostle, just as that resurrection was a regeneration, so that resurrection from the font is a regeneration.

(3) But why do you say that you dip in water? For this reason do you roam about; for this reason does uncertainty hold you? Indeed, we read: 'Let the earth bring forth fruit from itself, and the earth bring forth yielding fruit." Similarly, too, you have read about water; 'Let the waters bring forth creatures having life,'8 and creatures having life were born. They indeed were in the beginning of creation, but for you it was reserved for water to regenerate you unto grace, just as water generated other creatures unto life. Imitate the fish, which indeed has obtained less grace, yet should be an object of wonder to you. It is in the sea and is upon the waters; it is in the sea and swims upon the floods. A tempest rages in the sea, storms shriek, but the fish swims; it is not submerged, because it is accustomed to swim. So even for you this world is a sea. It has diverse floods, heavy waters, severe storms. And do you be a fish, that the water of the world may not submerge you. Moreover, beautifully does the Father say to the son: ‘This day I have begotten thee.' That is: 'When you re

5 Col. 1.18.
6 Cf. Rom. 6.3-11.
7 Cf. Gen. 1.11,12.
8 Cf. Gen. 1.20,21.
9 Cf. Acts 13.33 (Ps. 2.7).

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deemed the people, when you called them to the kingdom of heaven, when you fulfilled my will, you proved that you were my son.

(4) You came up from the font. What followed? You heard the reading. The girded priest—for, although the presbyters also do this, the highest priest, girded, I say, washed your feet. What mystery is this? Surely, you have heardl that the Lord, after He had washed the feet of the other disciples, went to Peter, and Peter said to Him: 'Do you wash my feet?' That is: 'Do you, Lord, wash the feet of a servant; do you without stain wash my feet; do you, the author of the heavens, wash my feet?' You have this also elsewhere:12 He went to John and John said to Him: 'I ought to be baptized by thee, and cometh thou to me?'13 I am a sinner, and have you come to a sinner, that you who have not sinned may put aside your sins? Behold all justice, 14 behold humility, behold grace, behold sanctification. He said: 'If I wash not thy feet, thou shalt have no part with me.


(5) We are not unaware of the fact that the Church in Rome does not have this custom, whose character and form wel6 follow in all things. Yet it?? does not have the custom of washing the feet. So note: perhaps on account of the multitude this practice declined. Yet there are some who say and try to allege in excuse that this is not to be done in the mystery, nor in baptism, nor in regeneration, but the feet are to be washed as for a guest. But one belongs to humility, the other

10 Cf. Exod. 15.13.
11 Cf. John 13.4-11.
12 Cf. Matt. 3.14.
13 Cf. 1 Peter 2.22.
14 Matt. 3.15.
15 Cf. John 13.8.
16 In Milan.

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