SACRAMENTS & CHURCH LIFE
+++ Introduction to the Coptic Orthodox Church By Fr. Tadros Malaty, Egypt, 1993. +++
I am delighted to write here about church sacraments, for in fact practicing church sacraments gives us enjoyment through the exceeding love of God and the free divine grace. Such are the practical gospels in the actual church life, that through them believers discover the mystery of the Gospel.
In brief I can say that the sacraments grant us the following blessings:
1. Practical divine grace: If teaching the divine grace is the heart and center of the Gospel, we attain this grace through the sacraments, as it is written in the Holy Bible:
In the sacrament of Baptism, we attain the rebirth, not of our own merit nor by a human hand but by the Holy Spirit (John 3:3-5; Tit. 3:5). We also receive God's adoption (Gal. 3:26, 27), attain the remission of sins (Acts 2:38) and sanctification (Eph. 5:25-26).
Through "Chrism" (Mayroun)we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit who teaches us, guides us and sanctifies us, so that we may attain the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Acts 8:17; 19:5,6).
Through penance and confession, the Holy Spirit grants us the remission of sins (Matt. 16:19).
In the Eucharist, the church is lifted up as if to heaven so that she meets her heavenly Savior, participates with the heavenly host in their hymns, and partakes of the Body and the Blood of the Lord to be united with Him, established in Him and to live forever with Him
(John 2:3 5,55; Matt. 26:27,28; 1 Cor. 10: 17).
Through the Sacrament of holy unction, the sick who accepts to be united with Christ in His sufferings attains the remission of sins (by repentance). and the healing of his body (James 4:14; Mark 6:13).
Through the Sacrament of marriage, the couple are united together, and the Holy spirit sets their home as the holy church of God...