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Comparative Theology, book by H. H. Pope Shenouda III
9- If baptism is renewal of life, why do we sin after being baptised?
Baptism is renewal of life according to the teaching of the Holy Bible (Rom.6: 4), but it does not bestow infallibility. We receive new birth, new life and new graces in baptism, and we take a new nature. The Apostle says: "...according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit" (Titus 3:5). This nature has the capability and the potentiality of a spiritual life. Nevertheless we are not infallible as long as we are still in the flesh, and we have discussed this issue before here on st-takla.org in other pages. Here we are in a test, we still possess our freedom to do good or bad because the grace of renewal we received in baptism does not eliminate the grace of freedom which we possess and with which we were created after God's image. That is why a virtuous person falls seven times a day and rises again. But we shall receive infallibility and the crown of righteousness in the life to come. Our teacher the Apostle Paul said effusively when his hour came: "Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day" (2Tim.4: 8).
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