“As the name of the Trinity is invoked, the candidate is immersed three times in the water and then three times rises up from the water once more: and immediately he enters into possession of all that he seeks. He is born and created; he receives the good seal; he is granted all the happiness that he desires; darkness before, he now becomes light; non-existent before, he now receives existence. God claims him for his own and adopts him as a son. From prison and utter enslavement he is led to a royal throne.
The water of baptism destroys one life and reveals another: it drowns the old man raises up the new.
To be baptized is to be born according to Christ; it is to receive existence, to come into being out of nothing.”
(St Nicholas Cabasilas, from The Time of the Spirit, p. 89)