The traditional definition of a sacrament is this: "A sacrament is a visible sign, instituted by Christ, to give grace." Within this definition there are three important statements:


  • A visible sign 
    An action is performed by a priest. 

    For example, when a baby is baptized in the church the priest pours 
    water over its head and at the same time says the words "I baptize 
    you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." 
    That is a visible sign. 

  • Instituted by Christ 
    The Lord Jesus Christ instructed His church to offer the seven 
    sacraments to His followers. For example, His directive to His 
    disciples in Matthew´s Gospel (28/19), "Go then, to all peoples 
    everywhere and make them my disciples; baptize them in the name 
    of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and teach them to obey 
    everything I have commanded you." 
  • To give grace 
    Grace is God´s free gift of Himself as the controlling influence in 
    our life and the decisions we make once we have committed ourselves 
    to Him in faith.


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