The Fathers Speak: Be Careful Not to Despise Baptism
“It is not the water [of Baptism] that bestows (for in that case it were a thing more exalted than all of creation) but the command of God, and the visitation of the Holy Spirit that comes sacramentally to set us free. But water serves to express the cleansing. For since we hope, when we wash with water, to make our bodies clean after we have become soiled by dirt or mud, so we apply water also in the sacramental action. There it displays the spiritual brightness that is subject to our senses…Despise not, therefore, the divine bath, nor think lightly of it, as a common thing simply because it makes use of water. For the power that operates is mighty, and the things that are accomplished by it are wonderful!”
— Gregory of Nyssa, On the Baptism of Christ, NPNF 2 5:175.