Archie Bunker On Baptism

Odds are, if you know who Archie Bunker is, you don’t associate him with theological astuteness. I didn’t either, but wisdom is found in unusual places. There’s an episode of All in the Family where Archie insists that the baby be baptized and even threatens to take the child to the font secretly if that’s what it takes.

When his son-in-law, Michael, makes it clear that he doesn’t want the baby baptized Archie asks, “What’s the matter, you were baptized, weren’t you?”

Michael replies, “Yes, but I renounce my baptism.”

Archie, in all his theological savvy, in a moment of true brilliance, retorts, “You cannot do that. You can renounce your belly button, but it’s still there!”

What a statement! May all theologians (and everyone is a theologian to some degree or another) be a little more like Archie Bunker.

For more on this see Gerhard O. Forde’s, “Preaching the Sacraments.” In Justification is for Preaching, 162-174.


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