"The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Ministry of John the Baptist
3 In those days John the Baptist appeared in the desert of Judea announcing, 2 “ Change your hearts and lives! Here comes the kingdom of heaven! ” 3 He was the one of whom Isaiah the prophet spoke when he said:
4 John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
5 People from Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and all around the Jordan River came to him. 6 As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 7 Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to be baptized by John. He said to them, “ You children of snakes! Who warned you to escape from the angry judgment that is coming soon? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have changed your hearts and lives. 9 And don’t even think about saying to yourselves, Abraham is our father. I tell you that God is able to raise up Abraham’s children from these stones. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and tossed into the fire. 11 I baptize with water those of you who have changed your hearts and lives. The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 The shovel he uses to sift the wheat from the husks is in his hands. He will clean out his threshing area and bring the wheat into his barn. But he will burn the husks with a fire that can’t be put out. ”
The development of Thomas Cranmer's theology of the Eucharist has often been studied and debated. This book places that development in the context of his sacramental theology and overall policy towards the reform of the liturgy. The first part of the book describes the traditional practice and perceptions of the Eucharist and Baptism (a somewhat different picture from that presented e.g. by Duffy's Stripping of the Altars). It then follows the evidence for liturgical reform and the development in Cranmer's thought through the reign of Henry VIII and the beginning of Edward VI's reign leading up to the two Prayer Books.
Detailed examination of the 1549 Prayer Book confirms scholarly consensus that its theological standpoint is identical to that of 1552, the fullest and clearest liturgical expression of Cranmer's standpoint; however there are sections in it which (along with the Order of Communion of 1548) suggest the influence of a less radical sacramental and eucharistic theology. It is suggested that the 1549 Prayer Book was originally drafted as a liturgy to accompany the King's Book of 1543 but was hurriedly changed as Cranmer's thought developed through 1548.