Is water baptism required for salvation?

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  • Is water baptism required for salvation?

    Just like it says.
    Some verses (like Peter's speach in Acts 2) seem to make a big deal about both Repent and Be Baptized.
    Other verses seem to say that we must Repent and Confess (with no mention of Baptism).

    So is baptism an essential act of obedience or not?

  • #2
    I'm going to give this answer to is Baptism required for salvation: Yes and no.

    Salvation is by faith alone. Baptism is an instruction, not a requirement. But, because it's an instruction and Christians follow the Lord's instructions, all Christians are baptized. Someone who rejects being Baptized can only be considered to be unsaved. But, someone who is unable to be Baptized, say a deathbed conversion, they are still saved.
    Comment>

    • #3
      For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.
      (1 Corinthians 12:13 ESV)
      It is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, not water baptism, that is necessary for salvation. When Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius and his household they received the baptism of the Spirit before they had been baptized in water.

      While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, “Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days.
      (Acts 10:44-48 ESV)
      They were already saved when Peter said they should be baptized in water. All who are saved should be baptized in water in obedience to Christ's command but the water baptism isn't the way they are saved.
      Clyde Herrin's Blog
      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by theophilus View Post
        It is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, not water baptism, that is necessary for salvation. When Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius and his household they received the baptism of the Spirit before they had been baptized in water.


        They were already saved when Peter said they should be baptized in water. All who are saved should be baptized in water in obedience to Christ's command but the water baptism isn't the way they are saved.
        I agree completely.
        Which is always a bit of a risk, since it means that my natural inclination is to just nod in agreement without looking hard at any other possibilities.

        So just to be thorough, is it possible that Cornelius household was a special case (like the thief on the cross) where God was using 'exception processing' to make an important point about salvation and the church being for Jews and Gentiles alike? Taken as a whole from the vision on the roof through the report on Peter baptizing the Gentiles of the house of Cornelius (after the fact), it seems to be a very central point being made by the unfolding events.

        As I said, I am inclined to agree 100% with both responses presented. Faith saves, the Holy Spirit baptized and water is an act of obedience, not salvation.
        Beyond the 'death bed' conversion, I believe that many come to faith through non-traditional avenues ... like tele-evangelists, on-line resources and informal conversations ... who may simply be ignorant of the command for water baptism. Once you learn the truth, THEN you have a choice to make about obedience or rebellion (which becomes a matter that God can handle directly).
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        • #5
          I agree with Theo,

          True Baptism is an outward expression of an inward reality as well as an act of initiation into the body of Christ - 1 Corinthians 12:13.

          And will add that I say no to water baptism being necessary for Salvation. If we add anything to salvation it becomes grace + + +. I say yes as a demonstration of one's obedience though because faith without works is dead. And just to clarify, the works do not justify the sinner, the works justify the faith according to James.

          God bless,
          William
          Comment>

          • #6
            I believe water baptism should follow salvation as soon as is practical. In my own case, however, I wasn't baptized in water until about two and a half years after I was saved. The reason for this was that when I was saved I was already a member of a church and had been baptized in water when I joined it. I simply never considered the fact that I should be baptized again after being saved.
            Clyde Herrin's Blog
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            • #7
              Originally posted by William View Post
              And will add that I say no to water baptism being necessary for Salvation. If we add anything to salvation it becomes grace + + +.
              Technically, salvation is already grace +. I am required to repent, so it is grace + repentance.
              Those who argue that baptism is commanded (like in Acts 2) would argue that it is grace + repentance + obedience.
              ... which is still not Grace + works.

              Baptism seems a finer hair that we Christians split than most would care to admit. Where is the line between obedience and works? That would seem to be a matter of the heart ... stuff best judged by God.
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              • #8
                Salvation is solely mongerism and is by grace alone through Christ alone. Regeneration enables a man's faith and repentance. Ezekiel 36:25-27 states, 26"And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you". That is, instead of a heart of stone, a heart of flesh, a soft heart to the word of God. 27"And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules". That is, God will cause you to be receptive and obedient to the word of God.

                There is nothing we contribute to our Salvation. Again, Salvation is monergism.

                God bless,
                William
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Originally posted by William View Post
                  Salvation is solely mongerism and is by grace alone through Christ alone.
                  So was Peter talking nonsense in Acts 2:38-39? (The repent part, not the baptism part that you already addressed.)

                  [Isn't the concept of regeneration without repentance sort of odd?]

                  [EDIT: I read up on mongerism. Assuming you believe it and all of its logical consequences (which seems a reasonable assumption), it sort of answers a lot of questions and shuts down a lot of potential conversations.]
                  Last edited by atpollard; 01-03-2016, 09:48 PM.
                  Comment>

                  • #10
                    Originally posted by atpollard View Post
                    So was Peter talking nonsense in Acts 2:38-39? (The repent part, not the baptism part that you already addressed.)

                    [Isn't the concept of regeneration without repentance sort of odd?]

                    [EDIT: I read up on mongerism. Assuming you believe it and all of its logical consequences (which seems a reasonable assumption), it sort of answers a lot of questions and shuts down a lot of potential conversations.]
                    John Calvin On Acts 2:38:

                    Peter said Hereby we see that those do never go away empty which ask at the mouth of the Lord, and do offer themselves unto him to be ruled and taught; for that promise must needs be true, Knock, and it shall be opened unto you, (Mat_7:7.) Therefore, whosoever shall be rightly prepared to learn, the Lord will not suffer his godly desire to be in vain; for he is a most faithful master, so that he hath scholars which are apt to be taught and studious. Wherefore, there is no cause why he should fear, lest he suffer us to be destitute of sound counsel, if we be attentive and ready to hear him, and do not refuse to embrace whatsoever he shall teach us. And let us suffer ourselves to be governed by the counsel and authority of those men whom he offereth unto us to teach us, for this ready obedience cometh thence so suddenly in those which addict themselves unto the apostles, because they are persuaded that they are sent of God, to show them the way of salvation.

                    Repent. There is greater force in the Greek word, for it doth signify the conversion of the mind, that the whole man may be renewed and made another man, which thing must be diligently noted, because this doctrine was miserably corrupted in the time of Popery; for they translated the name of repentance almost unto certain external rites. They babble somewhat, indeed, about the reigned contrition of the heart; but they touch that part very slightly, and they stand principally upon the external exercises of the body, which were little worth; yea, though there were in them no corruption; but they urge nothing else in a manner but reigned trifles, wherewith men are wearied in vain. Wherefore, let us know that this is the true repentance, when a man is renewed in the spirit of his mind, as Paul teacheth, (Rom_12:2.) Neither need we to doubt of this; but that Peter did preach plainly of the force and nature of repentance; but Luke doth only touch the chief points, and doth not reckon up the words of the oration which he made. We must, therefore, know thus much, that Peter did at the first exhort the Jews unto repentance; and that done, he lifted them up with hope of pardon; for he promised them forgiveness of sins, which two things are the two parts of the gospel, as we know full well; and, therefore, when Christ will briefly teach what the doctrine of the gospel doth contain, he saith, that repentance and remission of sins (Luk_24:47) must be preached in his name. Furthermore, because we are reconciled unto God only by the intercession of Christ’s death, neither are our sins otherwise purged, (126) and done away, save only by his blood, therefore, Peter calleth us back unto him by name. He putteth baptism in the fourth place, as the seal whereby the promise of grace is confirmed.

                    Wherefore, we have in these few words almost the whole sum of Christianity, namely, how a man renouncing himself and taking his farewell of the world, may addict himself wholly to God; secondly, How he may be delivered by free forgiveness of sins, and so adopted into the number of the children of God. And forasmuch as we can obtain none of all these things without Christ, the name of Christ is therewithal set forth unto us, as the only foundation of faith and repentance. And we must also note this, that we do so begin repentance when we are turned unto God, that we must prosecute the same during our life; therefore, this sermon must continually sound in the Church, repent, (Mar_1:15 ) not that those men may begin the same, who will be counted faithful, and have a place already in the Church; but that they may go forward in the same; although many do usurp the name of faithful men, which had never any beginning of repentance. Wherefore, we must observe this order in teaching, that those which do yet live unto the world and the flesh may begin to crucify the old man, that they may rise unto newness of life, and that those who are already entered the course of repentance may continually go forward towards the mark. Furthermore, because the inward conversion of the heart ought to bring forth fruits in the life, repentance cannot be rightly taught unless works be required, not those frivolous works which are only in estimation amongst the Papists, but such as are sound testimonies of innocence and holiness.

                    Be baptized every one of you. Although in the text and order of the words, baptism doth here go before remission of sins, yet doth it follow it in order, because it is nothing else but a sealing of those good things which we have by Christ that they may be established in our consciences; therefore, after that Peter had intreated of repentance, he calleth the Jews unto the hope of grace and salvation; and, therefore, Luke well afterwards, in Paul’s sermon, joineth faith and repentance together in the same sense, wherein he putteth forgiveness of sins in this place, and that for good considerations; for the hope of salvation consisteth in the free imputation of righteousness; and we are counted just, freely before God, when he forgiveth us our sins. And as I said before, that the doctrine of repentance hath a daily use in the Church so must we think of the forgiveness of sins, that the same is continually offered unto us; and surely it is no less necessary for us during the whole course of our life, than at our first entrance into the Church, so that it should profit us nothing to be once received into favor by God, unless this embassage should have a continual course; be-reconciled unto God, because “he which knew no sin was made sin for us, that we might be the righteousness of God in him,” (2Co_5:20.)

                    Moreover, the Papists do so corrupt this other part of the gospel, that they quite exclude the remission of sins, which was to be obtained by Christ. They confess their sins are freely forgiven in baptism, but they will have them redeemed with satisfactions after baptism; and although they mix the grace of Christ together therewithal, yet because they inwrap the same in men’s merits, they do by this means overthrow the whole doctrine of the gospel; for, first, they take from men’s consciences the certainty of faith; that done, forasmuch as they part the forgiveness of sins between the death of Christ and our satisfactions, they do altogether deprive us of Christ’s benefit. For Christ doth not reconcile us unto God in part, but wholly, neither can we obtain remission of sins by him, unless it be whole and perfect. But the Papists are much deceived therein, who restrain baptism unto the nativity and former life, as if the signification and force thereof did not reach even unto death.

                    Let us know, therefore, that forgiveness of sins is grounded in Christ alone, and that we must not think upon any other satisfaction (127) save only that which he hath performed by the sacrifice of his death. And for this cause, as we have already said, doth Peter express his name, whereby he doth signify unto us, that none of all these things can be rightly taught, unless Christ be set in the midst, to the end the effect of this doctrine may be sought in him. That needeth no long exposition where he commandeth them to be baptized for the remission of sins; for although God hath once reconciled men unto himself in Christ” by not imputing unto them their sins,” (2Co_5:19,) and doth now imprint in our hearts the faith thereof by his Spirit; yet, notwithstanding, because baptism is the seal whereby he doth confirm unto us this benefit, and so, consequently, the earnest and pledge of our adoption, it is worthily said to be given us for the remission of sins. For because we receive Christ’s gifts by faith, and baptism is a help to confirm and increase our faith, remission of sins, which is an effect of faith, is annexed unto it as unto the inferior mean. Furthermore, we must not fetch the definition of baptism from this place, because Peter doth only touch a part thereof. Our old man is crucified by baptism, as Paul teacheth, that we may rise unto newness of life, (Rom_6:4.) And, again, we put on Christ himself, (1Co_12:0.) and the Scripture teacheth every where, that it is also a sign and token of repentance, (Gal_3:27.) But because Peter doth not intreat in thin place openly of the whole nature of baptism, but speaking of the forgiveness of sins, doth, by the way, declare that the confirmation thereof is in baptism, there doth no inconvenience follow, if ye do omit the other part. (128)
                    No, Peter was not talking nonsense - there is a difference between the sign, seal, and mark of baptism and the thing signified. Baptism is a sign of the forgiveness of sins, it isn't the means by which God forgives sins.

                    Concerning Salvation, repentance and faith are fruits of the Holy Spirit working in us transforming us into the image of Christ - Salvation is from God alone, anything less attempts to undermine or rob God of His glory. He is the author and finisher of our faith, He who began a good work will finish it.

                    The Ordo Salutis which is throughout the bible, both in the OT and NT:
                    1. Election--God's choice of people to save. This choice occurred before the foundation of the world.
                    2. Predestination--The work of God to ordain to salvation those who have been elected to it.
                    3. Calling--The preaching of the gospel message.
                    4. Regeneration--The change in the person produced by God.
                    5. Faith--The trust an individual has in the work of God on the cross.
                    6. Repentance--Turning from sin.
                    7. Justification--The imputation of righteousness to the individual thus making him righteous according to the law.
                    8. Sanctification--God's work in the individual to make him more like Christ.
                    9. Perseverance--God's work in the individual results in the person continually believing throughout his life.
                    10. Glorification--Resurrection to glory with God.

                    Regarding belief, Jesus says, you do not believe because you're not my sheep John 10:26. Notice it does not say you are not my sheep because you do not believe. But it does say you do not believe because you are not my sheep. Belief too is a fruit of the Holy Spirit enabled through regeneration.

                    Hope this helps,
                    God bless,
                    William
                    Comment>

                    • #11
                      This is what is found in Eusebius' Ἐκκλησιαστικὴ ἱστορία or Church History. Chapter II.—The Destruction of the Churches.
                      1. All these things were fulfilled in us, when we saw with our own eyes the houses of prayer thrown down to the very foundations, and the Divine and Sacred Scriptures committed to the flames in the midst of the market-places, and the shepherds of the churches basely hidden here and there, and some of them captured ignominiously, and mocked by their enemies. When also, according to another prophetic word, “Contempt was poured out upon rulers, and he caused them to wander in an untrodden and pathless way.”

                      He lived AD 260/265 – 339/340 which means pretty much that the authentic scriptures are merely difficult to be traced or found. (Not this statement alone.)

                      He is also the one who has quoted the end of the Bsorah of Matthew mostly like this
                      [FONT=Times New Roman, Times]"Go disciple ye all the nations in my name".[/FONT]

                      Which offers me the answer I needed for my question What is this talk about baptism being an act, a work or a move of obedience?

                      My understanding is that if one's baptism is obedience, it is being under the law and acting under the law.




                      Comment>

                      • #12
                        I amongst many others regard that Yeshua's baptism was a Mosaic act taking place under a Mosaic era in Israel.

                        So this act is not something for believers of our time to follow not even as a work of obedience.

                        The New Covenant baptism is to be made and was made in the name of Yeshua every time in the New Covenant.

                        IN the epistle to Romans is it written that those who are baptized in the name of Yeshua are ..........I'll quote it:
                        Romans 6
                        3 Don't you know that all we that are baptized in the Messiah Yeshua are baptized in his death.
                        4 That is why we are buried with him in the baptism to death in order to walk in the new life as the Messiah woke from death in the glory of the Father.
                        5 Because if we are buried in His death are we to be in His resurrection as well.
                        6 So do we know that the old adam which is in us is crucified with Him to destroy the body of sin that we were no more slaves of sin. 5 כִּי אִם-נִדְבַּקְנוּ בְּדִמְיוֹן מוֹתוֹ אָכֵן דְּבוּקִים נִהְיֶה

                        And now comes the important part, in verse 7
                        7 Because the one who is dead is freed from the sin. 7

                        I do see it like this: if you are not baptized in the death of Yeshua (Jesus)
                        you can not and will not be raised to live in his resurrection.

                        This is not an act of obedience. Rather it is a matter of dy or live in sin.

                        Jesus's resurrection is entirely oblidged for us to be part in it through
                        baptism in His name. Meaning that if - Paul somewheere states this -
                        Jesus was not resurrected, fath is in vain.



                        I add this verse here. "And if Messiah be not raised, yuor faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.

                        כִּי הַמֵּת נִקָּה מִן-הַחֵטְא׃ גַּם-לִתְחִיָּתוֹ׃
                        Last edited by slippy; 03-07-2016, 10:01 PM. Reason: Adding a verse
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