First, they hijacked Holy Orders, a diabolically dextrous move, since ordination is not a sacrament for evangelicals and charismatics in the CofE. Only Anglo-Catholics and conservative evangelicals objected (for different reasons) and were checkmated by the feminists in Synodical War I for Women in Dog Collars and the Synodical War II for Women in Pointed Hats and Purple Blouses.
Next, they came for Holy Communion, inviting people persisting in pansexual sin to the Table of the Lord, using florid euphemisms like “Open Table” and “bigger Table.” St Paul’s teaching on a “closed” table “open” only to repentant sinners—a mandate steeped in Holy Scripture ( 1 Corinthians 11:27ff ), the Catechumenate, Eastern Orthodoxy, the Book of Common Prayer and non-conformist churches from Baptist to Brethren, was trashed in the compactor of gay identity politics.
Now, like the Three Witches from Macbeth, they are wrapping their bony fingers around the Church’s jugular—the sacrament of baptism—and chanting their Shakespearean chorus of “Fair is foul, and foul is fair/Hover through the fog and filthy air.” If they can capture baptism, they’ve won the goostepathon of identity politics. Why? Because baptism is the sacrament of identity.
Martin Luther, when fighting off bouts of depression, was heard to shout, “I have been baptized!” Luther was declaring his new identity, as a new person, under the dominion of a new Lord, as part of a new body of Christ, and so no longer subject to the old bailiffs of Satan, sin, and death (and depression, in his case).
Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus calling for a “new birth” by “water and the Spirit” ( John 3:5 ) is about a new identity in Christ through baptism. Paul’s letter to the Romans speaking of baptism as dying and rising with Jesus to new life is about a new identity in Christ through baptism. “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither ■■■ nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus ( Gal 3:27-28 ).
To misappropriate sacramental “identity politics” of baptism, and misapply it to ideological “identity politics” of race or gender is to detonate a dirty bomb at the core of Christianity—dispersing radioactive defilement over two thousand years of the faith and contaminating the church for decades to come.
Guess who were the first to play dirty tricks with the sacraments? The Nazis.